BY JUSTIN LEBLANC AND MATT TIMPANARO
As David Reynolds sits in his classroom on a Monday morning, all he can think about was the weekend he had. The bass fishing tournament on Lake Ontario he just attended is playing in his head over and over.
What could I have done better? Should I have tried a new spot?
On the outside, Reynolds seems relaxed, but to the unknowing eye he is restless and cannot wait to go back to the lakes and fish.
David Reynolds, a high school biology teacher at Shenendehowa High School East, has a hobby not many people know about, well in the high school that is. Reynolds frequently attends bass fishing tournaments through the year.
“I try to go out and fish almost every weekend, whether its a tournament or just with my kids,” he said.
Reynolds grew up in Newburgh, then went on to attend college at Oswego and then went to New Paltz where he earned a masters degree in biology.
“I always loved the outdoors, and at New Paltz many of my classes involved hands on activities outdoors.” he said.
Reynolds participates in a large number of tournaments yearly. He decides to do these for one major reason, because he loves it.
“The tournaments allow me to go against other great fishermen from the state,” he said. “I love the competition, and the friendships I’ve made through years of these competitions.”
Mr. Reynolds is not well known for this hobby inside of school, but outside of school, Reynolds has been seen on television numerous times.
“At first the cameras and all the media scared me, but I got used to it and it doesn’t bother me as much now,” he said.
Prem Patel, one of Reynolds former students discussed with us how he did not know about the other side of Reynolds when he is outside of the classroom.
“I did not realize he was such a successful fisherman“ Prem explained, “It makes sense he has a love for the environment being a bio teacher and all.”
Reynolds ended this fishing season in 2nd place, falling to the leader by only a few points.
“I fell a few points off first, it honestly stunk because it meant I lost out on a couple grand. Nobody wants to fall a few points of extra thousands of dollars.” Reynolds said
“ Had I caught one more fish or just a little bigger of a bass I would’ve been the best in this Season.”
Reynolds still took second place, showing how truly talented he is. Reynolds also acts as a mentor to his former students, like Luke Leblanc.
“I love talking with Reynolds about new bait and fishing spots. Although I only fish locally, I hope to one day be a competitor in season and also in tournaments. Reynolds also gives me hints on technique and one day we will fish together.”