The Tigers finished first in the overall standings after handing the University of Alabama at Birmingham and the University of Alabama its first losses of the season last weekend.
Auburn also took first place in individual standings after the team of Daniel Holland and Eric Terrell finished with a total of 21.11 pounds, just above teammates Adam Murphree and Blake Evans, who finished with a total of 18.25 pounds.
“The first day was pretty slow,” Terrell said. “We struggled and only caught four fish—they just happened to be quality fish.
“The second day picked up, and things went a lot better. We caught our fish on beaver bait, which to that point we had not fished before. I caught the two biggest fish on the second day on it and thought if we had thrown that the whole time we could have had an even bigger bag.”
Auburn has an impressive record of 4–0 and is one of only three remaining undefeated teams along with Bethel and the University of North Alabama.
Jann Swaim, who works with the team, said the team does a lot of prefishing to prepare for the tournaments.
“We usually send boats in four different directions, and at the end of the day, we’ll come back together and discuss what the options are, what bait to use and put together a game plan,” Swaim said. “The guys work very close together, and I’d say right now we have the best four group of guys that are in it for the team.”
There are three two-day tournaments and one championship tournament in a season, and whoever has the highest win-loss record at the end of the season wins $2,000, a plaque and several gifts for club members such as rods and reels.
“It’s more for bragging rights than it is for prizes,” Terrell said.
Each school brings four two-man teams that compete for team honors.
The tournament also has an invitational where one two-man team competes against all other two-man teams, including those from their own school for individual honors.
Terrell has been partners with club president Daniel Holland since last year and said chemistry plays a bigger role in fishing together than many may believe.
“Daniel is a slow, methodical fisherman who practically drags bait in front of a fish all day until they eat it,” Terrell said. “I like to run and do things fast and get reaction bites, so we compliment each other. When I throw something fast, he’ll come in behind me and pick up the slower fish.”
The team’s next tournament will take place March 17–19 at Lake Guntersville, and Swaim said he believes the team stands a chance at finishing strong.
“Daniel Holland is an excellent captain,” Swaim said. “The guys have fished together for a few years and have confidence in each other’s abilities. When you have that confidence it creates a bond, and that has paid off so far. If we get through the matches at Guntersville, hopefully, we’ll be able to win this thing.”