|Texas Pro-Angler Denise Sustaita|
Fishing has been in my blood since I was a child growing up in the Houston area. I remember my dad waking me and my brother up in the wee hours of the morning, before the sun even came up, to head to Texas City to go wade fishing. As the 146 draw bridge lowered, my excitement escalated because I knew we were closer to walking into the cold waters, where the fun would begin. Fishing came natural for me, especially so since my dad, uncles and aunts fished several local tournaments on a regular basis. I remember my dad coming home from his tournaments and I would be so excited to ask, “did you win dad?” My dad would always reply, “did I go fishing – of course I won!”
I grew up spending a lot of time camping and fishing throughout Texas. Although we went to various campgrounds and lakes, we spent the most time on Lake Sam Rayburn where my parents owned a lake house. I was very fortunate to be able to fish one of the best fisheries in Texas on a regular basis. It wasn’t until about 5 years ago that I fished my first bass tournament on Sam Rayburn, where I weighed in an 8lb 14 oz bass. Needless to say, I was hooked on tournament fishing!
It didn’t take long for me to realize there was a lack of clothing and accessories for lady anglers, so I started making my own designs for myself. The items that I created were so well received by other ladies that about a year later, Reel Girls Fish was created to offer my designs to lady anglers everywhere.
I never thought that life would take me in the direction of pursuing a sport that I am so passionate about. Last year, while I was running my booth at the Bassmaster Classic, I met a wonderful young lady that was a member of the LBAA. She invited me to fish the upcoming tournament, which happened to be in Texas. This was a huge decision for me to make because I had never fished alongside anyone other than a family member. Not only that, I didn’t think I was good enough. She talked me into going to Dallas and just “trying it.” I made the decision to commit and give it my best. Fishing that first LBAA tournament was a life changing experience for me. I can’t tell you how happy I am that I took that chance, it has taught me to be a better angler and a better person. I have met some of the best women in the sport of fishing and am honored to be a part of it all and to now call these ladies my friends. I look forward to many more years of fishing with the LBAA and to all of the new friends that I will make along the way.
Sponsors: Hag’s Tornado Baits (http://www2.hagstornadobait.com/), Livingston Lures, Hummingbird, Minn Kota, Talon, Santone Lures, Navionics, Tournament Saver Pro, Bass Minder, Impulse Rods, Lew's P-Line, The Rod Glove, Round Valley TUngsten Weights, Easy Spool 2000, Costa Sunnglasses, Kick'n Bass Attractants and Kim Tindall & Associates.