(Feb 27, 2018 - Andersonville, TN)
Boater Rob Linkous of Rogersville, Tennessee, caught a five-bass limit weighing 18 pounds, 1 ounce, Saturday to win the 2018 T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Volunteer Division opener on Norris Lake presented by Navionics. Linkous earned $3,545 for his victory.
“I was fishing on the main lake, on the Clinch side,” said Linkous, who earned his first career victory in FLW competition. “I figured out a pattern late Friday while practicing and I just went to the bank and started cranking.”
Linkous said that he caught around 25 fish throughout the day – six keepers. He said the key to his victory was his lure – an Ike’s Demon-colored Rapala DT6 crankbait.
“I was sitting in 17 feet of water and throwing parallel to the bank,” Linkous said. “I would use a fast retrieve, then stop and twitch the bait. The fish would bite on the pause.
“The keepers were coming out of 10 feet of water,” he continued. “Once I had my limit, I cut off the DT6 and gave it to my co-angler to tie on and catch a few. It was his first tournament and he ended up cashing a check as well. It was a fun day on the water.”
The top 10 boaters finished the tournament in:
1st: Rob Linkous, Rogersville, Tenn., five bass, 18-1, $3,545
2nd: Chris Bullock, Lake City, Tenn., five bass, 17-13, $1,773
3rd: Brian Pate, Wise, Va., five bass, 16-5, $1,181
4th: Kyle Smith, Elizabethton, Tenn., five bass, 16-3, $827
5th: Craig Powers, Rockwood, Tenn., five bass, 14-10, $709
6th: Willie Bryan, Sevierville, Tenn., five bass, 14-7, $650
7th: Justin McGaha, Knoxville, Tenn., five bass, 14-2, $1,091
8th: Jimmy Taylor, Clinton, Tenn., five bass, 13-7, $532
9th: Nick Huff, Corbin, Ky., four bass, 13-0, $543
9th: Burton Bryan, Sevierville, Tenn., five bass, 13-0, $443
Tyler Duckworth of Gray, Tennessee, caught a bass weighing 5 pounds, 14 ounces – the heaviest of the event in the Boater Division – and earned the day’s Boater Big Bass award of $445.
Matt Brown of Harriman, Tennessee, won the Co-angler Division and $1,889 Saturday after catching four bass weighing 12 pounds, 8 ounces.
The top 10 co-anglers were:
1st: Matt Brown, Harriman, Tenn., four bass, 12-8, $1,889
2nd: Brandon Harris, Spring City, Tenn., five bass, 11-12, $894
3rd: Bobby Hendricks, Reliance, Tenn., five bass, 11-6, $564
4th: Dan Roberts, Cincinnati, Ohio, five bass, 10-12, $394
5th: David Blakely, Kingsport, Tenn., five bass, 10-5, $338
6th: Chad Ball, Abingdon, Va., three bass, 10-3, $310
7th: John Coker, Knoxville, Tenn., four bass, 9-0, $281
8th: Matthew Rasnick, Elizabethton, Tenn., four bass, 8-15, $253
9th: Scott Standafer, Hamilton, Ohio, three bass, 8-12, $211
9th: Dakota Vance, Lenore, W. Va., three bass, 8-12, $211
Ryan Buchanan of Gray, Tennessee, caught the largest bass in the Co-angler Division – a 4-pound, 9-ounce fish. The catch earned him the day’s Co-angler Big Bass award of $207.
The T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Volunteer Division event on Norris Lake presented by Navionics was hosted by the Anderson County Tourism Council.
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. 18-20 BFL Regional Championship on Lake Norman in Huntersville, North Carolina. 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 2018 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. The 2018 BFL All-American will be held May 31-June 2 at Cross Lake in Shreveport, Louisiana, and is hosted by the Shreveport-Bossier Sports Commission. Top performers in the BFL can move up to the Costa FLW Series or even the FLW Tour.
For complete details and updated information visit FLWFishing.com.
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 2018 across five tournament circuits. Headquartered in Benton, Kentucky, with offices in Minneapolis, FLW and their partners conduct 286 bass-fishing tournaments annually around the world, including the United States, Canada, China, Italy, South Korea, Mexico, Portugal, South Africa and Spain. 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.