Grant Hack of Mount Gilead had the opportunity to compete in the Carhartt Bassmaster College Series National Championship at Lake Chickamauga, Tennessee.
In the event, which was held from Aug. 1-3, Hack teamed with Jonathan Stepp to represent The Ohio State University. The duo finished 97th out of 116 two-person teams with a total of three fish weighing 10 pounds and five ounces.
“It was pretty cool,” he said. “We had banquets every night and had different meetings with the companies that sponsored the event. We definitely had our schedules set and booked.”
To advance to the national event, Hack and Stepp had to win the Ohio Bass Nation College Championship, which they did with a total of 13.37 pounds worth of fish. A total of 11 boats took part in that meet.
“It’s not NCAA affiliated,” Hack explained. “It’s clubs. If you have a boat you’re able to use, you’ll automatically be able to fish in events.”
He added there were multiple ways to make the national meet — either by finishing in the top 10 percent of a large event containing roughly 170 boats or by winning the state championship.
Hack, who attends the Marion branch of Ohio State and is majoring in criminology, has loved fishing for the vast majority of his life.
“Honestly, my dad (Tom) has been doing it since the mid-to-late 90s and I just fell in love with it going fishing with him,” he said. “It’s addicting — just the adrenaline. It’s definitely a different sport. You either know it like the back of your hand or you don’t.”
Currently 20 years old, Hack has fished competitively for the last seven years, doing upwards of 25 tournaments per year.
“I still have some local events,” he said of his 2019 season. “Our tournament season in Ohio — April to October is what we see as fishing season.”
Rob Hamilton can be reached at 419-946-3010, ext. 1807. Connect with him on Twitter at @SportsMCS