Leesville BASSMasters gathered for our annual Christmas dinner at Winston's Grille in North Raleigh to celebrate the conclusion of our 2018 season. Normally, we hold our celebration in December, but Mother Nature had other plans and scuttled our plans with a December 9 snowstorm that led Winston's to close their doors that day. But getting together with the Leesville family is what's truly important, not necessarily when it happens.
After a great meal with our spouses and significant others, end of year trophies for the 2018 season were handed out to our Top 3 finishers along with the Big Fish for the year.
Coming in 1st place, our Champion for 2018 was Mark Cannon who was one of our rookies for 2018. Mark won three tournaments during the season and consistently finished in the Top 3 in the majority of the derbies. Mark also took Big Fish honors in more than half of the tournaments as well. Second place for 2018 went to longtime Leesville member Duke Bevard, who finished the season strong winning three of the last four tournaments of the year. Rounding out the Top 3 in third place was Wes House, who also took home Big Fish for the 2018 season with a 6.53 pound hawg caught at our first tournament at Kerr Lake in early March.
While we celebrated the 2018 season tonight, it's hard to believe that the 2019 season is set to kick off in just a few short weeks. At our February meeting, we'll draw the location for our annual Money Tournament. The Top 6 finishers from 2018 will each submit their choice from our regularly scheduled 2019 trail stops and one entry will be selected at random for a "tournament within a tournament" format. We'll also be drawing for our first tournament of 2019: a two-day tournament at Buckhorn Reservoir in Bailey, NC on March 2 & 3. Buckhorn is a small lake, but it has tons of potential to produce some big sacks.
2018 was a very good year for Leesville, and we're looking forward to the start of yet another season of fishing, fun, and friendship.