PAA Supports Timmy Horton High School Event

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PICKWICK LAKE, Ala. – Adam Neill is proud to say there is something fishy about some of the assistance he is receiving to help pay his tuition at the University of Alabama this fall.

Neill, who graduated from Florence High School in May, caught five bass weighing 16.86 pounds Saturday, May 18, 2013 to win the senior division of the Timmy Horton High School Bass Anglers Challenge fishing tournament on Pickwick Lake. His prize, a $3,000 college scholarship.

“As much as it costs to go to college now, any help you receive to help pay your tuition mean a lot. To fish in a bass tournament that didn’t cost a dime to enter and go home with a $3,000 scholarship is a tremendous help,” Neill said. He plans to major in business and marketing at Alabama.

The tournament, which was organized by Horton, a professional angler from Muscle Shoals, and the Colbert County
Tourism and Convention Bureau, offered $20,000 in college scholarships to students in grades 7-12. The Professional Anglers Association provided the weigh-in stage and technical assistance for the tournament.

Zeke Gossett, a sophomore at Pell City High School, won a $2,500 scholarship for finishing second in the senior division with a 15.72 pounds catch. Ethan Rickard, who also graduated from Florence High in May, finished third with 15.35 pounds and won a $1,500 scholarship.

Rickard also won a $500 scholarship for catching the largest bass in the senior division, a 6.66-pound largemouth.

Rickard, who will attend the University of North Alabama in the fall, said the tuition assistance will help.

“Every penny I get to help pay my tuition is welcomed,” he said.

Andrew Warbington, a home school student from Northport, finished fourth in the senior division with 14.64 pounds and received a $700 scholarship. Jonathan Peters, of Central High in Florence, won a $300 scholarship for his fifth-place finish.

Austin Brown, a 7th grader at Plainview School won the junior division with a 14.57-pound catch. He said the money will help, but he is unsure where he will attend college. “I’ve still got a long time to decide where I want to go to school.”

The junior division was for students in grades 7-9.

Garrett Jones, a freshman at Hartselle High finished second in junior division with 13.67 pounds. He received a $2,500 scholarship. Jacob Jefferys, a Muscle Shoals freshman, was third with 10.48 pounds. He won a $1,500 scholarship.

Jackson Ross Napier won a $700 scholarship for finishing fourth among the juniors. Colton Cox of Russellville won a $300 scholarship for finishing fifth.

The top schools based on the combined weight of their top five anglers were Hartselle, Muscle Shoals, Florence, Belgreen and Russellville.

Highlights of the tournament will be broadcast on Pursuit Channel.