Koza Kids On A Tournament Roll
Brad Gill | February 21, 2019
Brother and sister Carter and Lee Rose Koza, of Marietta, won two different high school bass tournaments on Lake Seminole in February. The first tournament was Feb. 9 at the FLW High School Open, where they competed with 41 other boats and weighed in 23-lbs., 2-ozs. for the victory.
“The fish were definitely in prespawn mode,” said Carter, who was also featured in the February 2019 issue of GON in the Map-of-the-Month article on Lake Allatoona.
“The fish were staged in a ditch that ran along a bank, and they were feeding up before they went in to spawn in a pocket. We caught all of the fish on a green-pumpkin ChatterBait with a Suicide Shad for the trailer fished on St. Croix Legend Glass prototype rods.”
Carter, 16, is in the tenth grade, and his sister Lee Rose is 18 and a senior. Both anglers attend and were representing Mount Paran Christian School in Kennesaw.
“We both enjoy the chance to be able to find fish before tournaments, and of course catch the fish on tournament day,” said Lee Rose. “The social aspect of fishing tournaments is also something we both cherish. We have met some of our closest friends that share a love for the sport of fishing from all across the state of Georgia that we will keep for the rest of our lives.”
The two plan to continue fishing together until Lee Rose graduates high school and then moves off to college.
“I cannot wait to begin fishing in college,” said Lee Rose. “I will be studying business marketing/communications at Carson-Newman University this fall and will be on their fishing team.”
The second Seminole tournament the Koza siblings won was the Georgia BASS Nation High School tournament on Feb. 17. There were 123 teams fishing in that event, and Carter and Lee Rose brought in 18.31 pounds, although they struggled early on the tournament.
“We caught one in the morning, about 3 pounds, and then we went three hours without a bite,” said Carter, who said he will be fishing in college and plans to fish professionally. “We fished ditches, points, grasslines, depressions but didn’t catch anything. We then pulled up on this point that had the old Spring Creek river channel running around it and started to fish it. We then caught three good fish on a Carolina rig and a 6-pounder and a 3-pounder on a Suicide Shad swimbait.”
Winning just one of these high school tournaments is something young angers will carry with them for a long time, but the odds of winning on back-to-back weekends seems nearly impossible.
“It’s a feeling I will always cherish. It is the same feeling that keeps me fishing competitively and to the best of my ability,” said Carter.
Lee Rose added, “The feeling of winning two back-to-back first-place trophies is very rewarding. Carter and I spent numerous hours of practice and research, and it definitely paid off. It’s a feeling I will never forget. I want to give a huge thanks to my dad Jamie Koza for all he has taught me this past year about tournament fishing.”
Carter and Lee Rose’s dad Jamie Koza is the owner of The Dugout, which has long been the hub of Lake Allatoona fishing.
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