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12/4/2013 6:00:00 AM
Frankie goes fishing, gets national shot
Frankie Mueller holds a huge largemouth bass that he caught at Clear Lake.
Frankie Mueller holds a huge largemouth bass that he caught at Clear Lake.

Don Martin
The Great Outdoors

No doubt you have heard and read about some of the accomplishments of Frankie Mueller, who is a senior at the Kingman Academy of Learning.

Besides being a top-notch football player, Mueller is also an avid and excellent angler.

Bass fishing is a lot of fun, but it is also a lot of work, and how this young man finds time to do it I'll never know.

But some way, somehow, he does get away to fish - and now it seems he and his fishing partner are on their way to the big time.

On Oct. 16, Mueller and his fishing partner, Shane Edgar, a sophomore at Sandra Day O'Connor High School in Glendale, paired up to represent Arizona at the Forrest L. Wood/The Bass Federation Western Division of the High School Division Championships at Clear Lake in northern California.

The young anglers weren't familiar with Clear Lake, so a week before the tournament Frankie's grandparents, Corky and Brenda Mueller, took him there to learn the lake and the huge bass that inhabit this large inland impoundment.

Mueller, who has participated in a number of youth bass fishing tournaments and is a member of the Mohave Junior Bass Club in Kingman, found that the larger bass had schooled up and were holding close to an offshore structure near deep water.

This information would prove invaluable as teams from six western states - California, Idaho, Oregon, Colorado, Washington and Arizona - competed in a winner-take-all tournament in which only the top team goes to the FLW/TBF High School National Championship. States that were eligible to send teams to the tournament but elected not to included Utah, Nevada, New Mexico and Wyoming.

On the day of the tournament, using a combination of deep-diving Strike King crankbaits and heavy drop shot rigs topped with local lure manufacturer Canyon Plastic tubes, the team put together a winning strategy.

Mueller/Edgar brought in a five-fish limit that included the tournament's largest bass, a lunker that weighed 6.14 pounds, plus a pair of 5-pound bass.

The fish were caught on the previously located structure at a depth of 25-35 feet.

Their total weight was 23 pounds, 11 ounces, and that was plenty good to win the tournament.

The second-place team from Idaho was more than 5 pounds behind, bringing in a five-fish limit that weighed 18.2 pounds.

While the weight the Arizona team brought in was very impressive, it is interesting to note that the Arizona and Idaho teams were the only ones to bring in a five-fish limit.

Now all that Mueller and his partner can do is wait and continue to sharpen their bass fishing skills.

Winning at the national championships, which will be held on March 9 at Lake Keeowee in South Carolina, could launch these young anglers into a different realm of fishing.

The next level of competition would see sponsors, new boats and possibly the opportunity to fish at a number of colleges that are offering full scholarships to top anglers.

Kingman has produced some great anglers in the past who have fished in some of the most prestigious bass tournaments in the nation.

While getting close, none have ever made it to the top - but maybe in the future we will see the names of Frankie Mueller and Shane Edgar when we watch the bass fishing shows we all enjoy.

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Reader Comments

Posted: Wednesday, December 4, 2013
Article comment by: Jennifer Gregory

I am very proud of you Frankie! Good luck at the National Championships.

Posted: Wednesday, December 4, 2013
Article comment by: MC HAMMER

That looks just like what your dad catches only bigger. You GO Frankie.

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