Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Area Angler State Bass Champ Again

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Area Angler State Bass Champ Again

Article excerpt

Byline: Joe Julavits, Times-Union outdoors editor

For the second time in four years, Jacksonville's Jerry Shawver II has earned the title Florida state bass champion. Not bad for a guy who doesn't have much time to fish.

Shawver, who belongs to the First Coast Christian Bass Club, teaches math at Parker High School and a night class at FCCJ. He's working on a second masters degree at Jacksonville University and is active in his church. Two daughters, ages 8 1/2 months and 2 1/2 years, keep Shawver and his wife occupied around the house.

"There's a lot on my plate. Right now I'm down to fishing just one day a week, if I'm lucky," Shawver said.

"I've got two great grandmothers willing to help out and an understanding wife. I'm fortunate it has all worked out."

It worked out last weekend at North Carolina's Kerr Reservoir, where Shawver finished second overall to South Carolina's Nelson Walker in the Citgo B.A.S.S. Federation Southern Divisional tournament. Shawver caught a three-day total of 33 pounds, 15 ounces to place first among the 12-man Florida team and claim state champion honors. He also won the title in 1998.

Shawver's finish qualified him to compete against other state champions and several foreign titlists next spring in the Citgo B.A.S.S. Federation Championship, the amateur bass fishing championship. Five anglers from that event will qualify for the 2003 Bassmasters Classic, bass fishing's premier contest.

Shawver's main competition for the state title came from none other than Palatka's Terry Scroggins, who has won just about everything in sight this season, including the B.A.S.S. tour event in Palatka and the 500-plus-boat Wolfson Children's Hospital Bass Tournament. Scroggins will fish in next month's Bassmasters Classic.

"I think the biggest thing [in the North Carolina tournament] was being able to hold off Terry," Shawver said. "He's had a great year.

"He helped us out as a team and helped me with a pattern. …

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