The second annual Louisiana High School Bass Classic is set for March 23.

The tournament is sponsored by Ascension Christian High in Gonzales, and students there are working to promote fishing as a competitive sport among area high school students.

Ascension Christian High Principal Mark Pellegrin said the Louisiana High School Bass Classic is the first attempt to coordinate a fishing competition among area high school students.

Pellegrin said fishing, like other sports, should be a part of the high school experience.

“High schools provide students with competitive sports all year; however, fishing isn’t one of them,” Pellegrin said.

“I think it’s a great opportunity for schools to encourage students to participate in one of the most-competitive sports in Louisiana, fishing,” he added.

He added that organizing an annual competitive fishing tournament gets young people involved in learning more about the sport and gives youth an opportunity to appreciate the wealth of natural resources in south Louisiana and the importance of conservation.

Wesley Johnson, president of the East Ascension Sportsman’s League, a local nonprofit conservation organization, agrees with the idea of organizing a tournament for high school students.

“The East Ascension Sportsman’s League is excited and honored to be a sponsor of the Louisiana High School Bass Classic,” Johnson said. “We strive to get our high school kids involved with nature and conservation. We can’t think of a better way of doing that than sponsoring a high school bass tournament.”

Students at Ascension Christian High have been working on plans for the Louisiana High School Bass Classic for several months.

Student Tournament Director Seth Mangrum, a student at Ascension Christian High, said this tournament is the only one of its kind.

“This tournament gives high school students an opportunity to compete on a level playing field to win cash and prizes,” Mangrum said.

“It also gives teenagers an opportunity to enjoy a little friendly competition and bragging rights for their high school,” Mangrum said. “It’s going to be a great tournament as we continue to get more and more schools to participate.”

Tournament entries must be two-member teams and one member must be a high school student. Boats will launch from the Manchac Boat Launch in North Pass. Entry fee is $40 per boat.

For more information, contact Ascension Christian High School at (225) 622-2800.