(Apr 11, 2017 - Iuka, MS)
Boater Dustin Lippe of Lampe, Missouri, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 16 pounds, 5 ounces, Saturday to win the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Ozark Division event on Table Rock Lake. Lippe took home $4,948 for his victory.
“It was really windy and a tough day on the water, but I was very happy to get the win,” said Lippe, who earned his first career win in FLW competition. “I only had five keepers all day long, but they were all the same size – a good quality fish. I fished a 10-mile stretch, from the dam down to lower end of the lake. I was focusing on staging areas where I figured the fish would be getting ready to move up.”
Lippe said that he caught his fish on a Luck-E-Strike Rick Clunn STX Jerkbait and a peanut butter and jelly-colored Bass X football jig with a green-pumpkin twin-tailed trailer and an Alabama rig.
“I’ve been smashing them on a jig for the past couple of weeks, but it was a bit too windy for it to be as effective as it had been,” Lippe said. “The key for me was really my Denali Lithium rods. It was a light bite and I couldn’t really feel the fish hit, but I could feel the rod load up and that really helped me in the windy conditions.”
The top 10 boaters finished the tournament in:
1st: Dustin Lippe, Lampe, Mo., five bass, 16-5, $4,948
2nd: Randall Hutson, Washburn, Mo., five bass, 15-8, $2,474
3rd: Dustin Blevins, Harrison, Ark., five bass, 14-5, $1,649
4th: Nick Morris, Princeton, Mo., three bass, 14-4, $1,910
5th: Joel Douglas, Blue Eye, Mo., five bass, 13-11, $990
6th: Andy Newcomb, Camdenton, Mo., five bass, 13-10, $907
7th: Wes Endicott, Joplin, Mo., five bass, 13-8, $825
8th: Brian Hansen, Fenton, Mo., five bass, 13-7, $742
9th: Tim Kube, Imperial, Mo., five bass, 12-14, $860
10th: Richard Bower III, Jefferson City, Mo., five bass, 12-12, $577
Morris caught a 5-pound, 11-ounce bass, which was the heaviest of the tournament in the Boater Division. The catch earned him the day’s Boater Big Bass award of $755.
Alex Torkleson of Sand Springs, Oklahoma, weighed in four bass totaling 13 pounds, 8 ounces Saturday to win the Co-angler Division and the top prize of $2,469.
The top 10 co-anglers were:
1st: Alex Torkleson, Sand Springs, Okla., four bass, 13-8, $2,469
2nd: Joshua Pullins, Bonne Terre, Mo., five bass, 11-15, $1,235
3rd: Alan Quick, Springfield, Mo., five bass, 9-7, $823
4th: Joe Dietz, O’Fallon, Mo., four bass, 9-6, $676
5th: Brian Huber, Saint Peters, Mo., five bass, 9-3, $494
6th: Joe Cook, Rogersville, Mo., four bass, 8-10, $453
7th: Steve Grigsby, Washington, Ill., four bass, 8-6, $412
8th: Trey Schroeder, Crestwood, Mo., four bass, 8-4, $420
9th: Rich Purington, Platsmouth, Neb., two bass, 7-9, $701
10th: Tom O’Connor, Reeds Spring, Mo., three bass, 7-0, $288
Purington weighed a 5-pound, 8-ounce bass which earned him the day’s Co-angler Big Bass award and $372.
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. 5-7 BFL Regional Championship on Kentucky Lake in Gilbertsville, Kentucky. 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.