Out of the 23 sport clubs available on campus, one that may not so familiar is the Fishing club. The Fishing Club is treated just like any other sports club, and has been around since 2007. They go to tournaments, they act as a team, and they fish anywhere that they fancy. The club has 12 members right now and Adrien Briens, president of Fishing Club, would like to make the club more well-known. Generally the club was meant to be small, but now they are seeking to expand it and become a larger presence on campus.
“We are open to everyone from beginner fishermen or fisherwomen, to students that have fished their whole life,” said Briens.
The club fishes for all species of fish, but their main focus is freshwater bass. They fish at a variety of places all over the West Coast, but their “home” lakes are Clear Lake, Lake Sonoma and Spring Lake.
The main purpose of the club is to allow students that love to fish to be able to fish all the time and develop further knowledge, skills and sportsmanship by competing with other colleges in fishing tournaments.
“We fish all the time and we all have different specialties so we don’t really plan fishing trips, except for our tournaments,” said Briens. “We just go to fish and always have a great time whether we are catching them or not.”
The club has about 10 sponsors that hook them up with free fishing gear. They also represent and advertise the club with their newly made custom jerseys. They compete against every major school such as Chico State, Oregon, Arizona State and Boise State in the FLW College tournaments. FLW College fishing is the world’s largest tournament circuit for collegiate anglers. There are more than 600 clubs nationwide that compete against each other for prize money between $500 to $5,000. The experience students receive by fishing in the FLW College tournaments can be worth more than the money, because students are competing against the world’s top anglers. Briens and his partner Ernie Gorham qualified for and competed in the FLW College National Championship in South Carolina this past March that will be televised on NBC News on May 31.
With the prize money that the club receives from tournaments, they plan to get a bass fishing boat for the club that will be used for tournaments and for fishing in general. Although the members of the club are serious about their fishing tournaments, they are generally laid back and just like to have a fun and relaxed time around nature.
“Fishing is something that I love to do and would be interested in joining the club at school because I have been trying to go the past couple of weekends,” said student Zach Steinkopf.
Dedicated fishers or students looking to go fishing with a group of people who are interested in the Fishing club are able to find more information at http://sonoma.edu/campusrec/sports/clubs/fishing.html.