EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) In this week's SportScene13 Spotlight, we turn our focus an a pair of anglers from Eau Claire Memorial, as this week's Bryce Kostman and Dylan Kierstead signed their letters of intent to fish collegiately at the top school in their sport, Adrian College in Michigan.
SportScene 13 Spotlight
"This has been an absolute honor to be able to this and to do it with one of my best friends and be able to move on in a sport and be able to fish for a team and not just for club, is unreal", says Dylan.
"I have been dreaming of this moment since I was born practically. I have competed in high school and other tournaments with my father and it is a great day to be able to move forward and hopefully do this as a career someday," says Bryce
Bryce and Dylan have put in the long hours and hard work it takes to be the best at the sport of fishing. Both of the Memorial seniors knew at an early age that fishing was something they could excel at.
"When I was ten I fished my first tournament with my father and that year I think I ended up winning a tournament and from that day on, knowing the success was out there, just the drive and determination to make it as has been there since then," says Bryce.
"When I was 14 I fished my first tournament with a close family friend and I had won it, it was my first tournament and the drive has built extreme since then," says Dylan.
Unlike most prep and college sports, sponsorships are allowed and play a big part in tournament fishing says Bryce's father Todd.
"Since this isn't an NCAA event at the college or state level, a Wisconsin state sport through schools, you can have sponsors that will help pay your entry fees, gas and travel so forth."
That has also taught them a lesson in responsibility
"The also figured out that they ran out of money last year and we were sleeping in trucks to make it happen, to finish those tournaments and do what we had to do. I'm not going to show them much mercy on that. That is life, that is how you have motivation to do it harder, make more money and to get where you need to go."
Bryce and Dylan both hope that their fishing careers continue well past their days at Adrian..
"College is the next step and hopefully do good enough in that to get the ball moving to fish some of these bigger tournaments and get better every day and then be able to fish against the big boys," says Bryce.
"You can't pass up this opportunity, it is kind of a once in a lifetime deal. There is nothing better than being able to have that opportunity", says Dylan.
"Get a degree, first and foremost,in something, says Dylan's father Ryan. Going to school and fish the tour the next four years and get to do what they love to do!"