Fishing tourney leaders change format to avoid cancelling amid coronavirus pandemic

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Robbie Pels unloads what turned out to be the winning fish for weigh in on March 21 at the XtremeBass Challenge at Roland Cooper State Park.

BY TODD PRATER | Selma Sun Staff 

Most major sporting events have been canceled due to the coronavirus except for some fishing tournaments that changed their size and format to prevent large crowds. 

Saturday March 21, the XtremeBass Challenge came to Roland Cooper State Park. As it has been in the past, registration and weigh in was at the large pavilion. But unlike tournaments in the past at Roland Cooper, there were no large crowds at the pavilion at registration or at weigh in. Tournament Director John McAlpine devised a format that not only prevented large crowds, and the 70 boats were weighed in in just over an hour. 

Registration and signin that morning were curbside. Anglers drove up to the signin tent. One helper checked the live wells while McAlpine or one other helper handled the paperwork. No anglers get out of their truck and there was no physical contact.

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