(Mar 4, 2018 - BAINBRIDGE, Ga.)
Local pro Matt Baty of Bainbridge, won the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division event at Lake Seminole presented by T-H Marine Saturday after bringing a limit of bass weighing 20 pounds, 3 ounces to the scale. Baty’s two-day total of 45-0 gave him the win by a 2-pound, 3-ounce margin in the wind-shortened event and earned him a winner’s check worth $56,200.
“I found my spot about three weeks ago after we had gotten quite a bit of rain,” said Baty, who earned his second career win on Lake Lanier in FLW competition. “I’ve fished it a few times over the years, and it never really had any grass before. This year there was a small patch of deep grass, and there was a current over it. The fish were holding to the grass.
“During my practice I caught a 6-pounder there, but I had foul-hooked it in the eye,” Baty continued. “I left the area and was hoping that it would be productive for me come tournament time. I ended up catching that same 6-pounder during the tournament – I could tell by the messed up eye.”
Baty described his area as a creek channel bend. He said he sat his boat in 8 feet of water and cast his baits out to 18 feet, flowing with the current. He credited a gizzard shad-colored Jenko CD20 crankbait, a 1-ounce Buddha Bait Swagger Jig with a 4-inch shad-colored Big Bite Baits Cane Thumper and a Carolina-rigged Zoom Trick Worm as his key baits for the event. He estimated that he caught around 20 keepers on Friday and another 15 on Saturday.
“The first day I caught most of my fish on the Jenko crankbait. The second day the big ones came on the Swagger Jig, but I used the Carolina rig to fill out my limit. I did get one big one with the Carolina rig. I truly believe that Spike-It Aerosol Garlic Oil scent on my baits was a big difference-maker.”
The top 10 pros on Lake Seminole finished:
1st: Matt Baty, Bainbridge, Ga., 10 bass, 45-0, $56,200
2nd: Rick Tindell, Leesburg, Ga., 10 bass, 42-13, $23,650
3rd: Hensley Powell, Whitwell, Tenn., 10 bass, 40-14, $16,100
4th: Jason Smith, Dawson, Ga., 10 bass, 39-7, $14,000
5th: Kurt Mitchell, Milford, Del., 10 bass, 39-4, $13,000
6th: Troy Gibson, Mountain Home, Ark., 10 bass, 38-9, $10,000
7th: Wes Logan, Springville, Ala., 10 bass, 38-8, $8,600
8th: John Cox, DeBary, Fla., 10 bass, 33-7, $7,600
9th: Bradley Enfinger, Colquitt, Ga., 10 bass, 31-12, $6,600
10th: Koby Kreiger, Bokeelia, Fla., 10 bass, 31-10, $4,800
Tindell and Brandon Classon of Leesburg, Georgia, both caught an 8-pound, 6-ounce bass Friday – the biggest of the tournament – and split the day’s Boater Big Bass award of $300.
Shawn York of Sarasota, Florida, won the Co-angler Division and a Ranger Z175 with a 90-horsepower outboard motor with a two-day total catch of nine bass weighing 28 pounds, 11 ounces. Terry Holsapple of Greenup, Illinois, finished runner-up with 10 bass weighing 27-14, good for $7,050.
The top 10 Co-anglers on Lake Seminole finished:
1st: Shawn York, Sarasota, Fla., nine bass, 28-11, Ranger Z175 with a 90-horsepower outboard motor
2nd: Terry Holsapple, Greenup, Ill., 10 bass, 27-14, $7,050
3rd: Chuck Laslie, Havana, Fla., 10 bass, 27-2, $5,600
4th: William Cusic III, Lakeland, Fla., 10 bass, 25-5, $4,500
5th: Eulon Lee, Eclectic, Ala., eight bass, 23-8, $3,800
6th: Alan Engberg, Greenville, Ala., seven bass, 22-14, $3,300
7th: David Sullivan, Gaffney, S.C., 10 bass, 22-2, $2,800
8th: Cal Culpepper, Hamilton, Ga., nine bass, 21-10, $2,150
9th: Scap Cicero, Wetumpka, Ala., 10 bass, 20-3, $1,660
10th: Robert Russell, Smyrna, Tenn., seven bass, 19-12, $1,410
Harold Driver of Powder Springs, Georgia, caught the biggest bass of the tournament in the Co-angler Division Friday, a bass weighing 7 pounds, 7 ounces that earned him the day’s Co-angler Big Bass award of $200.
The Costa FLW Series on Lake Seminole presented by T-H Marine was hosted by the Bainbridge Convention & Visitors Bureau. It was the second of three FLW Series Southeastern Division tournaments in the 2018 season. The next Costa FLW Series tournament will be a Southwestern Division tournament, held March 22-24 on Grand Lake in Grove, Oklahoma.
The Costa FLW Series consists of five U.S. divisions – Central, Northern, Southeastern, Southwestern and Western – along with the International division. Each U.S. division consists of three regular-season tournaments with competitors vying for valuable points that could earn them the opportunity to compete in the season-ending Costa FLW Series Championship. The 2018 Costa FLW Series Championship is being held Nov. 1-3 on Lake Guntersville in Guntersville, Alabama, and is hosted by the Marshall County Convention and Visitors Bureau.
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.