“The apprentice has become the master,” laughs Reitzel as he watches his son Ty catch a beautiful 6 pound, 23 inch largemouth bass fish off a crank bait lure in Shadowlake Pond, and then release it back into the water.
Feb 04, 2019
The Woodlands Country Club Tennis Pro Regan Reitzel is a beloved fixture in our community — known for his incredible coaching skills and gregarious personality. But – did you know his killer backhand ground stroke also helps him accurately cast a fishing line across many beautiful lakes and ponds in The Woodlands?
The Reitzel family enjoys fishing in The Woodlands, which offers catch-and-release style fishing in its over 40 bodies of water (including ponds and lakes). They own kayaks and often picnic lakeside on weekends for family fun. His wife, Jill, has a pink fishing rod, which lights up when she reels in (for which he used to mock her – until she caught a 6 pound bass with it!) When relaxing at home, they curl up on the sofa to watch “Fish My City with Mike Iaconelli”, Wimbeldon or a NBA game together.
Reitzel was raised in The Woodlands. He graduated McCullough High School in 1989 (yes, McCullough was the high school in The Woodlands’ early days) and went on to play competitive tennis in high school and then at Washburn University. He and Jill have 3 sons: 14 year-old Ty, 12 year-old Toby and 4 year-old Brody.
Self-taught, Reitzel started fishing when he was 11 years old. His tennis doubles partner at the time was a friend named Chris Magill—and the two would bring along their fishing gear and fish after tournaments.
Ty, the Reitzel’s oldest son, has really taken to the sport of fishing and joined The Woodlands High School at College Park fishing team (yes, it’s a real team). Ty also makes YouTube videos of all his fishing adventures in a series called “Bassin with Tytato” which can be viewed here.
Retizel and Ty fish year round together in The Woodlands anytime of the day, although, they find the fish bite better very early in the morning.
“Our favorite places to fish are Deepdale Pond, Shadowlake Pond, Lake Woodlands and the Bear Branch Reservoir,” explains Reitzel. “Sometimes we plan the trips and wake-up super early while other times we just wing it and hop on our bikes with our fishing rods and see where the vast system of hike and bike trails in The Woodlands takes us.”
Reitzel explains that Ty has the patience and skills to catch a fish at any pond or lake they go to.
“Unlike me, Ty is very good about adapting to the surroundings and changing lures or bait,” he muses. “I, on the other hand, am very stubborn and stick with plastic worms for bait!”
For Reitzel, tennis and fishing go hand-in-hand, literally, because both sports require patience and strong wrists for accuracy of swing, serve and casting. More importantly, Reitzel says he likes playing tennis and enjoys fishing because in both you’re usually out in nature spending quality time with friends and/or family.
“The apprentice has become the master,” laughs Reitzel as he watches Ty catch a beautiful 6 pound, 23 inch largemouth bass fish off a crank bait lure in Shadowlake Pond, and then release it back into the water.
The Reitzels gather up their fishing gear and load their kayaks back onto the trailer. They will soon meet up with Jill and Brody at Knox Jr. High to cheer on Toby who is a Knox Knight basketball player.
At moments like these, Reitzel thinks of his father, who, with his own hands, built him a tennis/basketball court when he was young to practice on. He feels grateful to live in a community where amenities to play all kinds of sports and to have fun in nature with his own family now run rampant in the area.
If you are ever looking for Regan Reitzel … just check the local fishing holes or tennis courts—you may “catch” him there! To learn more about fishing in The Woodlands, click here.