Young anglers earn a third-place finish at Bassmaster youth championships

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By Darryl G. Smart

Trevor Barnucz and AJ Dube spend most of their spare time fishing. And that love for the sport was on full display this past weekend in Bobcaygeon.

Barnucz, from Delhi, and Dube, from Etobicoke, teamed up for the first time and proved to be a dynamic duo, earning third place at the Ontario BASS Nation Shimano Ontario Youth Championship.

“I had a great time fishing in my first Bassmaster high school national championship,” Barnucz said. “We were only two pounds short from heading to the United States for the regional championship next summer.”

The two-day event was a gruelling but enjoyable one for the pair that were matched up by the York Bassmasters Youth Program. After Day 1 they sat in fourth place out of the 12 teams thanks to their total of 7.33 pounds. 

The team was coached and driven around by Dube’s father Anthony Dube. And because each team had a coach, there was plenty of strategy going on in the boat. Coaches were able to call in plays and take timeouts to discuss strategies or to refocus.

“Most teams struggled to catch their limit of fish, but my teammate AJ and I succeeded, catching five bass both days, hitting seven and a half pounds for both days,” Barnucz said. 

Happy with their result, Barnucz said, they already have their eyes on next year, and taking their game to another level.

“Kawartha Lakes that time of year is usually cold, which really shuts everything down,” Barnucz said. “Both AJ and I have a game plan for next year to come on top and beat the best of the high school anglers in Ontario.”