(Feb 13, 2017 - PROSPERITY, S.C.)
Chris Marshall of Forest City, North Carolina, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 22 pounds, 9 ounces, Saturday to win the first T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) South Carolina Division tournament of 2017 on Lake Murray. For his win, Marshall took home $6,237.
Marshall said he spent his day fishing docks near spawning areas. He said he used one bait to catch his limit – a Chris Crawl-colored Katch-Her Lures Flipping Jig.
“My day got off to a slow start,” said Marshall, who logged his third career win in BFL competition. “I didn’t catch a bass until 1 p.m. I knew the warm temperatures would drive them up shallow at some point, but it took almost all day.”
Marshall said he caught everything he weighed in between 1 and 2 p.m.
“I probably hit around 150 docks throughout the event,” said Marshall. “I ran around and just kept skipping the jig. My key catches came right below the mid-lake line.”
Even though Marshall was ex
pecting the bass to be a bit shallower, he said he was glad he stayed committed to the jig bite.
“I only had seven bites and probably burned 35 gallons of fuel, but it eventually paid off,” said Marshall.
The top 10 boaters finished the tournament in:
1st: Chris Marshall, Forest City, N.C., five bass, 22-9, $4,237 + $2,000 Ranger Cup Bonus
2nd: Brad Fowler, Townville, S.C., five bass, 20-8, $2,019
3rd: David Kneece, Gilbert, S.C., five bass, 20-5, $1,345
4th: Bradford Beavers, Ridgeville, S.C., five bass, 20-0, $942
5th: Herman Vining, Gilbert, S.C., five bass, 19-2, $907
6th: Joey Sabbagha, Prosperity, S.C., five bass, 18-3, $1,040
7th: Carson Orellana, Mooresville, N.C., five bass, 17-3, $673
8th: Matthew Mollohan, Prosperity, S.C., five bass, 15-12, $606
9th: Adam Beckum, Martinez, Ga., five bass, 15-11, $538
10th: Chris Epting, Chapin, S.C., five bass, 15-10, $471
James Buchanan of Monroe, North Carolina, caught a 6-pound, 5-ounce bass – the largest of the event – which earned him the day’s Boater Big Bass award of $545.
Pete Kenny of Ashburn, Virginia, weighed in four bass totaling 18 pounds, 3 ounces Saturday to win the co-angler division and earn $2,306.
The top 10 co-anglers were:
1st: Pete Kenny, Ashburn, Va., four bass, 18-3, $2,306
2nd: Rodney Tapp, North Augusta, S.C., three bass, 15-3, $1,022
3rd: Ryan Edwards, Stuart, Fla., three bass, 13-0, $649
4th: Tim Chadwick, Elloree, S.C., five bass, 11-9, $454
5th: Lee Inman, Inman, S.C., four bass, 11-3, $389
6th: James Meadows, Goose Creek, S.C., three bass, 9-2, $356
7th: James Atkinson, Ridgeway, S.C., four bass, 9-1, $324
8th: Lorne Debord, Warrenville, S.C., two bass, 8-10, $292
9th: Dalton Dowdy, Chapin, S.C., four bass, 8-2, $259
10th: Ryan Frisch, Eatonton, Ga., four bass, 7-13, $227
Kenny also caught the biggest bass of the tournament in the co-angler division, a fish weighing 7 pounds, 3 ounces, and earned the day’s Co-angler Big Bass award of $262.
The top 45 boaters and co-anglers in the region based on point standings, along with the five winners in each qualifying event, will be entered in the Oct. 19-21 BFL Regional Championship on Lake Lanier in Gainesville, Georgia. Boaters will compete for a top award of a Ranger Z518C with a 200-horsepower Evinrude outboard and $20,000, while co-anglers will fish for a new Ranger Z518C with a 200-horsepower Evinrude outboard.
The 2017 BFL is a 24-division circuit devoted to weekend anglers, with 128 tournaments throughout the season, five qualifying events in each division. The top 45 boaters and co-anglers from each division, along with the five winners of the qualifying events, will advance to one of six regional tournaments where they 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 performers in the BFL can move up to the Costa FLW Series or even the 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 2017 across five tournament circuits. Headquartered in Benton, Kentucky, with offices in Minneapolis, FLW conducts more than 274 bass-fishing tournaments annually across the United States and sanctions tournaments in Canada, China, Mexico, South Africa 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.