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Microsoft gives devices to Mentor Role Model

Halifax budget rises with grant-funded projects

Water main break floods streets in South Boston

A water line break Wednesday morning at the intersection of Moore Street and North Main in South Boston sent water gushing through the neighborhood, forcing the full or partial closure…


Comets fall in state semi-finals





Funderburk, Moser win BASS Nation tourney

South Boston News
Matthew Funderburk, a ninth grader at Bluestone High School and Chase Moser, a 10th grader at Halifax High School won the BASS Nation of Virginia Junior State Qualifying Tournament Nov. 4. / November 14, 2018
The Mecklenburg High School Anglers and Mecklenburg County Youth Bassmasters each had solid performances at the BASS Nation of Virginia Junior State Qualifying Tournament on Nov. 4 at Occoneechee State Park in Clarksville.

The Mecklenburg High School Anglers’ Matthew Funderburk, a ninth grader at Bluestone High School and Chase Moser, a 10th grader from Halifax High School, won the tournament and continued their quest for not only a state title but also a national title. MHSA had five teams compete in the event. May is the projected month for the state tournament.

The Mecklenburg County Youth Bassmasters had two teams qualify for the states. Logan Brewer and Hunter Brewer placed eighth in the high school division; Brandon Cook and Trevor Wallace placed sixth in the middle school division.

Each of these student-athlete fishing programs is in their first year of competition. MHSA is led by Jeff Edwards and the MHSA board of directors. MCYB, a club offered through the Mecklenburg County school system, is under the direction of coaches Aleko Mangum and Steve Whitten.

Edwards said he was pleased with the way his teams performed and was proud of the win by Moser and Funderburk. The two combined for a third place finish, which also qualified them for the states, at the BASS Junior State Qualifier #1 held on the James River on Oct. 6. Edwards noted that the initial season has been a good one for the organization.

“We had five teams in, 10 kids and we had a first place finish. The same two kids (Moser and Funderburk) that got third and made state won the tournament this time,” Edwards said. “They’ve got a third and a first now and their leading in points for the state. Then we had an 11th place finish out of 57 boats. So we were strong our being our first year.”

Edwards said he hopes to get more teams qualified for state competition before the regular season is over. The teams have one more qualifier to compete in before the states begin.

“We have one more qualifier March 23-24 and that’s at Smith Mountain Lake,” Edwards continued. “We’ve got one more qualifier to get more kids on my team to the states. However now we’re in a points race as well, and you can bypass state and go straight to the nationals in their high school team tournament. We’re very excited for all our sponsors that have helped us put this thing together and be able to afford the things we afford for our group.”

Mangum and Edward seemed to echo each other thoughts. Mangum said he, too, was very pleased with the school club’s first year of competition.

“Not only did the kids perform well, they had fun and that’s what’s important,” Magnum said. “A lot of kids and adults never get to experience anything like this. And the kids had a big support system there.”

Mangum noted that the youth director for the tournament mentioned that the crowd at Occoneechee was one of the largest, if not the largest he’d seen at a kids’ tournament.

Mangum and Edwards both share a familiar struggle — acquiring enough boat captains for the teams. Both men stated that it’s hard to have students who want to fish and not have enough boats to carry them. Rules call for one team per boat and each vessel must be properly insured.

Mangum said not having enough captains is a problem confronting many teams in the student competition.

“I’ve got kids that don’t have boats to fish,” Mangum said. “It’s not just a Mecklenburg problem, it’s a state problem. It’s like that basically all over the state. We need to get more people out to help these kids.”

Both men said they were happy with the support the community has shown and they look for the programs to only get bigger and better. Brunswick Academy, which also has a fishing club this year, competed in Clarksville.

“Moving forward, I think it’s just gonna snowball as long as everybody stays together,” Edwards concluded. “Coach Mangum and I both face the same problem right now, we’re just boat captain-poor at the time. That would really make a difference for these kids to be able to get more boat captains.”

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