(Jun 27, 2016 - WINNECONNE, WI.)
Clayton Reitz of Morton, Illinois, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 16 pounds, 6 ounces, Saturday to win the second FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Great Lakes Division tournament of 2016 on the Wolf River Chain of lakes. For his victory, Reitz earned $4,575.
“I decided to head west from the takeoff ramp and fish a rock pile on Lake Poygan,” said Reitz, who notched his fifth win in FLW competition. “It was a little deeper than other people were fishing. I caught three smallmouth on a green-pumpkin Chompers Ultra Tube.
“After that I hit some seawalls in 10 feet of water on the lower end of Poygan using a ½-ounce chrome-colored Blitz Lures Blitz Blade,” Reitz continued. “I was slow rolling it about a foot off of the bottom and the bass bit it without much force. I probably picked apart 15 stretches of wall and was able to catch three more smallmouth.”
Reitz said he managed to cull out his previous catches throughout the afternoon to complete his winning limit.
“After those first three in the morning, it was a grind,” said Reitz. “It took most of the afternoon to get my final three keepers. I didn’t catch many by the end of the day, but they were the right ones.”
The top 10 boaters finished the tournament in:
1st: Clayton Reitz, Morton, Ill., five bass, 16-6, $4,575
2nd: Nathan Huss, Elkhart Lake, Wis., five bass, 14-0, $2,288
3rd: Theodore Johnson, Waupaca, Wis., five bass, 13-14, $1,525
4th: Cade Laufenberg, Winona, Minn., five bass, 13-13, $1,733
5th: John Berrens, Weyauwega, Wis., five bass, 13-4, $915
6th: Wayne Meetz, Neenah, Wis., five bass, 13-3, $1,139
7th: Geoff Williams, New London, Wis., five bass, 13-2, $763
8th: Jeff Benson, Holmen, Wis., five bass, 12-8, $686
9th: Mark McCartney, Davis Junction, Ill., five bass, 12-2, $610
10th: Jeff Krisher, Madison, Wis., five bass, 12-1, $534
Laufenberg caught a bass weighing 3 pounds, 12 ounces – the biggest of the tournament in the pro division – and earned the day’s Boater Big Bass award of $665.
Matthew Frisk of Sparta, Wisconsin, weighed in five bass totaling 11 pounds, 13 ounces, Saturday to win the co-angler division and earn $2,288.
The top 10 co-anglers were:
1st: Matthew Frisk, Sparta, Wis., five bass, 11-13, $2,288
2nd: Mike Wilmoth, Eau Claire, Wis., five bass, 11-2, $1,144
3rd: Cody Wissink, Arcadia, Wis., five bass, 9-4, $762
4th: Michael Taylor, Tipton, Iowa, three bass, 8-4, $534
5th: Ben Rockey, West Bend, Wis., four bass, 7-13, $458
6th: Alexandru Spiac, Chicago, Ill., three bass, 7-6, $419
7th: Tom Lyskawka, Arlington Heights, Ill., four bass, 7-3, $381
8th: Craig Fanning, Elwood, Ill., three bass, 7-2, $343
9th: Charles Novotny, Fort Atkinson, Wis., four bass, 7-0, $305
10th: Brad Wessling, Milwaukee, Wis., three bass, 6-14, $267
Chueyee Thao of Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin, caught the biggest bass of the tournament in the co-angler division, a fish weighing 4 pounds, 11 ounces and earned the day’s Co-angler Big Bass award of $332.
The top 50 boaters and 50 co-anglers based on point standings will qualify for the Oct. 13-15 Regional Championship on Kentucky Lake in Gilbertsville, Kentucky. Boaters will compete for a top award of a Ranger Z518C with a 200-horsepower Evinrude or Mercury outboard and $20,000, while co-anglers will fish for a new Ranger Z518C with a 200-horsepower Evinrude or Mercury outboard.
The BFL is a 24-division circuit devoted to weekend anglers, with 120 tournaments throughout the season, five in each division. The top 50 boaters and co-anglers from each division qualify for a regional tournament and are competing to finish in the top six, which then qualifies them for one of the longest-running championships in all of competitive bass fishing – the BFL All-American. Top winners in the BFL can move up to the Costa FLW Series or even the Walmart FLW Tour.
FLW is the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, providing anglers of all skill levels the opportunity to compete for millions in prize money in 2016 across five tournament circuits. Headquartered in Benton, Kentucky, with offices in Minneapolis, FLW conducts more than 235 bass-fishing tournaments annually across the United States and sanctions tournaments in Canada, China, Mexico and South Korea. FLW tournament fishing can be seen on the Emmy-nominated “FLW" television show, broadcast to more than 564 million households worldwide, while FLW Bass Fishing magazine delivers cutting-edge tips from top pros.