By MIKE CORN
WILSON LAKE -- Fishing tournaments are in the air, and two are planned for next week at Wilson Lake by the Bass Federation.
The Central Division tournament -- bringing in nearly 90 anglers from six states -- will start Wednesday.
The central tournament will continue through Friday, but the weighing trailer will remain on site for the June 25 Kansas High School Fishing State championship.
In its first year, the Kansas high school tournament is only expected to bring in eight to 10 teams of two anglers.
Bass Federation spokesman Mark Gintert isn't surprised by the small size of the tournament, given it is the first of its kind. Plus, he said, the rural nature of Kansas makes it difficult to gather up students.
But, he said, the tournament will run just as it would if dozens of teams were participating, and students will be able to return to school next fall as ambassadors of fishing.
The winning team advances to regional championships.
The tournaments will be a boon to the Russell community, which is serving as a host.
Gintert said it will be a treat for students to be judged with the same weighing equipment as the adult division.
That divisional tournament could include more than 40 boats on the water. Twelve anglers from each of the six states in the division are eligible to fish.
"Those guys can catch some fish," Gintert said of the anglers who will be taking part in the divisional tournament.
Each state can send two anglers to the national tournament.