(Mar 20, 2017 - SUMMERTON, S.C.)
Bradford Beavers of Ridgeville, South Carolina, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 25 pounds, 13 ounces, Saturday to win the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) South Carolina Division event on Santee Cooper. Beavers took home $3,514 for his victory.
Beavers said he started his day working through trees, in 3 to 5 feet of water, on the upper end of the lake.
“I used a ½-ounce Chris-Mas-colored Katch-Her Lures Jig and caught a couple of keepers,” said Beavers, who notched his first career-win in BFL competition. “It was really windy, so I stayed in protected areas. The wind really dictated where I was able to fish.
“After a couple of hours, I ran down to the lower end and fished flats with stumps in similar depths,” continued Beavers. “I caught three with a Chartreuse-Sexy-Shad-colored Strike King KVD HC Square Bill Silent Crankbait.”
Around noon, Beavers said he returned to the trees and used the jig to round out his limit.
“If it weren’t for the wind, I would’ve fished in completely different areas,” said Beavers. “Normally, you hate bad conditions, but sometimes they work in your favor.”
The top 10 boaters finished the tournament in:
1st: Bradford Beavers, Ridgeville, S.C., five bass, 25-13, $3,514
2nd: Jerry Pelfrey, Laurens, S.C., five bass, 25-6, $1,957
3rd: Ken Ellis, Bowman, S.C., five bass, 22-5, $1,172
4th: Daniel Howell, Prosperity, S.C., five bass, 21-2, $820
5th: Mark Hutson, Moncks Corner, S.C., five bass, 19-4, $673
5th: Timmy Thompkins, Myrtle Beach, S.C., five bass, 19-4, $973
7th: Chris Marshall, Forest City, N.C., five bass, 18-7, $686
8th: Matthew Mollohan, Prosperity, S.C., four bass, 17-8, $527
9th: Sandy Oliver, Hartsville, S.C., five bass, 17-2, $469
10th: Michael Maxfield, Hanahan, S.C., five bass, 15-7, $410
Greg Rikard of Leesville, South Carolina, caught a bass weighing 9 pounds, 8 ounces – the largest of the event – which earned him the day’s Boater Big Bass award of $450.
Charles Dickens of Appling, Georgia, weighed in four bass totaling 15 pounds, 14 ounces Saturday to win the Co-angler Division and $1,757.
The top 10 co-anglers were:
1st: Charles Dickens, Appling, Ga., four bass, 15-14, $1,757
2nd: Wesley Mullins, Bloomingdale, Ga., three bass, 12-8, $879
3rd: Calvin Sharp, Round O, S.C., five bass, 10-12, $585
4th: Paul Foley, Mooresville, N.C., two bass, 9-7, $610
5th: David Hutcherson, Campobello, S.C., two bass, 9-1, $351
6th: Terry Coleman, Sumter, S.C., three bass, 8-14, $372
7th: Audie Brantley, North Augusta, S.C., three bass, 8-13, $293
8th: Jeremy Bouldin, Kings Mountain, N.C., two bass, 8-6, $264
9th: Russ Scalf, Summerville, S.C., two bass, 8-4, $234
10th: Jeff Rikard, Leesville, S.C., three bass, 8-3, $205
Bobby Littlejohn of Spartanburg, South Carolina, caught the biggest bass of the tournament in the Co-angler Division, a fish weighing 7 pounds, 8 ounces. The catch earned him the day’s Co-angler Big Bass award of $225.
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.