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Posted By The Bass Hog

LUFKIN, Texas--It’s not like Brandon Palaniuk had never won a Bassmaster Elite Series event. Coming into this week, the 29-year-old pro from Idaho had already claimed Elite Series trophies in 2012 and 2013 and came close to raising that win total with three other second-place finishes.

But for an intense competitor known as the “prodigy,” the four-year victory drought was an itch he desperately needed to scratch — and he did it during this week’s Toyota Bassmaster Texas Fest benefiting Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.

Palaniuk caught 24 pounds, 7 ounces of bass during Wednesday’s opening round and followed with 23-2 and 24-7 the next two rounds. Then he caught he caught 21-12 on Championship Sunday to push his four-day total to 93-12 and hold off a late charge by California pro Brent Ehrler.

Ehrler, who led the first two days, finished second with 91-12.

“I never found a school in practice where I could just go and pound on them and catch multiple fish in one spot,” said Palaniuk, who earned a $100,000 first-place prize and an automatic berth into the 2018 GEICO Bassmaster Classic presented DICK’S Sporting Goods. “It wasn’t until the tournament started to roll around that more and more fish started to transition out and school up on spots.

It was a sign of things to come for Palaniuk when he started Wednesday’s opening round with his biggest fish of the tournament — a largemouth that weighed 8-4. Palaniuk caught the bass in deeper water than what was being fished by most of the field.

That gave him the confidence to stay away from the shallower areas that were holding incredible numbers of bass, but not necessarily the size it would take to win.

“I was torn between deep and shallow,” he said. “There were so many fish shallow, and you could get so many bites, but I just wasn’t getting the big fish that I needed. I just kept telling myself the big fish were out deep, and if I could stick it out and get five to 10 bites a day, I could have a chance to win.”

Palaniuk said he spent a lot of time idling around looking for the usual summer postspawn hot spots, like the tips of points, humps and ledges.

He found lots of smaller fish on those places. But while moving from spot to spot on straight banks, he found a several brushpiles on his Humminbird electronics with incredible numbers of crappie and one or two bigger dots that he believed were bass. In that situation, he used a Neko Rig with a Zoom Magnum Trick Worm — and immediately caught a big fish.

“I knew that if I was hooking 8- or 9-pounders in brushpiles on that lighter line, there was a chance I was going to lose some,” he said. “Those fish are so strong, and that stuff is so thick. And it wasn’t like I was fishing the outsides of it. I was throwing directly into it and trying to get it to drop directly down into the center where the fish were.”

Palaniuk’s key bait for shallower, more aggressive fish was the size 13 Storm Arashi Top Walker in the pro blue color pattern. For deeper fish — since he couldn’t get bass to bite a crankbait — his top two lures were a 10-inch Zoom Ol’ monster worm in the plum color pattern with 1/2-ounce VMC tungsten weight pegged with a VMC stop on a 5/0 heavy-duty VMC extra-wide gap hook, and a Neko Rig Zoom with a green pumpkin magnum trick worm on a 1/0 weedless Neko hook that will debut at the annual ICAST fishing industry trade show in July.

Though Ehrler finished 2 pounds away from his first Elite Series victory, he didn’t go home emptyhanded. For catching the Toyota Big Bass of the week — a 9-1 largemouth on the first day — he earned a $50,000 Toyota Tundra pickup truck.

Courtesy of BASS Communications.


 
Posted By The Bass Hog

BIRMINGHAM, Ala.--The national championship location and dates for the 2017 Carhartt Bassmaster College Series presented by Bass Pro Shops have been decided and released, B.A.S.S. announced today.

The championship will be held on Minnesota’s famed Lake Bemidji, and connected fisheries in Bemidji, Minn., Aug. 10-12. The event is hosted by Bemidji State University (BSU) and Visit Bemidji.

“Visit Bemidji is excited to partner with B.A.S.S. and BSU in development of the 2017 Bassmaster College Series National Championship,” said Susan Goudge, executive director for Visit Bemidji. “The event will be second-to-none with our university campus being located on the shores of beautiful Lake Bemidji.”

Goudge said the scenic lakes and local amenities provide an ideal venue for the nation’s top college anglers.

“Lake Bemidji and area lakes are naturally connected to multiple waterways that include the Mississippi River,” she said. “Bemidji, First City on the Mississippi, looks forward to welcoming the fishing teams, families and B.A.S.S. staff to our beautiful community. And, we’d like to wish the best of luck to all the young anglers.”

“Bemidji State University is proud to join with regional and industry partners as host of this high-caliber competition,” said Mike Mulry, director of engagement marketing at BSU. “We will seize the opportunity to showcase our lakeside campus as an ideal destination for competitive fishermen and all students who love the outdoors.”

To qualify for the national championship, College anglers compete in one of five regionals, and in a Wild Card qualifier for a second chance to reach the championship.

B.A.S.S. also announced that the Bassmaster College Series Wild Card presented by Bass Pro Shops will be held June 8-10 on Lay Lake in Shelby County, Ala.

After three days of championship competition in Minnesota, the best team will be crowned College Series national champions.

From there, the Top 4 teams will advance to the College Bracket, at a location to be later announced, Aug. 14-16. At that point, individual anglers will then vie for a single berth to the 2018 GEICO Bassmaster Classic presented by DICK’S Sporting Goods. The Classic will be held March 16-18 in Greenville, S.C., with fishing competition taking place on Lake Hartwell out of Anderson, S.C.

For more information, please visit Bassmaster.com/college-bass-fishing.

Courtesy of BASS Communications.


 
Posted By The Bass Hog

May 21, 2017--LA CROSSE, Wis. – Pro Bryan Schmitt of Deale, Maryland, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 14 pounds, 10 ounces Sunday to win the FLW Tour at the Mississippi River presented by Evinrude. Schmitt’s four-day total of 20 bass weighing 61 pounds, 6 ounces, was enough to edge second-place pro Joshua Weaver of Macon, Georgia, and win the top prize of $125,000 in the four-day event that featured 160 of the world’s best bass anglers competing in La Crosse.

Already a well-known river expert, Schmitt built his career by picking apart the Potomac and James rivers. Schmitt was able to apply that expertise to Pools 7, 8 and 9 on the Mississippi River this week and earn his first career win on the FLW Tour.

“My knowledge of the rivers I fish back home was 100-percent key for me this week,” said Schmitt, a five-year Tour veteran who has amassed more than $680,000 in FLW competition. “I’ve never been here, but I fell in love with how it was setting up.”

Schmitt said his sweet spot this week was a barricaded pond on the lower end of Pool No. 8. He described it as a section of water near the main-river channel that was surrounded by sandbars which protected fish in multiple phases of the spawn.

“I don’t know if it was there from years and years of current building up the sandbars, but at some point local authorities may have added riprap to make it stay,” said Schmitt. “It had two main trenches that ran through it and had plenty of deep water. At the very top there was a hole in the rock jetty that let current flow in. It had all the right variables – just enough current to bring food in, grass and spawning habitat, and the deep water for when they were done.”

Schmitt said he spent the majority of his tournament in the area, noting that all but three of the fish he weighed in came from it. 

“I think the fish that I was catching were both prespawn and postspawn,” Schmitt said. “Fresh fish were moving in and the big ones that were done were moving out.”

Schmitt said that his primary lure this week was a black and blue-colored prototype Riot Baits Swim Jig with a swimming trailer. He also used a black and blue-skirted vibrating jig with a Riot T3 Tattle Tail Swimbait and a 5-inch Texas-rigged Riot Stick stickbait with a 1/2-ounce tungsten weight.

“Before my main pattern evolved, I caught quite a few by just pitching the stickbait to grass,” said Schmitt. “It got me a lot of key fish on the first two days, but the bigger ones wanted the moving baits.”

The final event on the FLW Tour schedule for the 2017 regular-season happens to be on the Potomac River – a place where Schmitt has three Costa FLW Series wins. Schmitt expressed that he is eager to finish the season on a high note.

“I’ve got the momentum now,” said Schmitt. “After all of this, words can’t describe how excited I am to get back out there and compete on the Potomac.”

Overall there were 50 bass weighing 132 pounds, 2 ounces caught by pros Sunday. All of the final 10 pros brought in five-bass limits.

Cole Herb of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, won the co-angler division and $20,000 Friday with a two-day total of 10 bass weighing 24 pounds, 11 ounces, followed by Jeremiah Shaver of Holmen, Wisconsin, who finished in second place with 10 bass weighing 23 pounds, 11 ounces, worth $7,600.

Courtesy of FLW Communications.


 
Posted By The Bass Hog

May 8, 2017--MARBURY, Md. – Aaron Dixon of Bel Alton, Maryland, brought five bass totaling 21 pounds, 9 ounces to the scale Saturday to win the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Shenandoah Division tournament on the Potomac River. For his limit, Dixon earned $3,901.

“I primarily fished north of the takeoff ramp in a protected cove,” said Dixon, who earned his first career-victory in BFL competition. “I worked up and down the bank and was able to target bass in all three phases of the spawn.”

Dixon said the fact that bass were in all three phases was what made his 100- to 150-yard stretch of shoreline unique. He said that spawning bass were 4 feet down on pea gravel, and that pre- and postspawn bass were 6 to 10 feet deep in grass.

“I made long casts using a black and blue-colored (Yamamoto Baits) Senko and was able to hit both depths on the retrieve,” said Dixon. “The key factor was the protection in the cove and the deep water. With the extra-high tide, the bass that were there didn’t have to move – they just stayed in the grass.”

After the bite slowed around 10:30 a.m., Dixon said he encountered problems with his engine mounts and was forced to return early to the takeoff ramp.

“We really only got to fish for four hours because of the mounts,” said Dixon. “Luckily I already had enough in my livewell to win it.”

Complete results can be found at FLWFishing.com. 

Dixon also caught a bass weighing 5 pounds, 14 ounces – the heaviest of the event in the Boater Division – which earned him the day’s Boater Big Bass award of $435.

Craig Wright of Rustburg, Virginia, won the Co-angler Division and $1,833 Saturday after bringing a five-bass limit totaling 17 pounds, 10 ounces to the scale.

Elliot Pilson of Stuart, Virginia, caught the biggest bass among Co-angler Division anglers, a fish weighing 4 pounds, 6 ounces. The catch earned him the day’s Co-angler Big Bass award of $217.

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.

For regular updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow the BFL on Facebook at Facebook.com/FLWFishing and on Twitter at Twitter.com/FLWFishing.

Courtesy of FLW Communications.


 
Posted By The Bass Hog

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. —The Shell Rotella brand of heavy-duty diesel engine oils has signed on as a premier sponsor of B.A.S.S. and 2017 Bassmaster tournament circuits, B.A.S.S. announced today.

The agreement includes the most prestigious bass tournament circuits in the nation, including the GEICO Bassmaster Classic presented by DICK’S Sporting Goods, the Bassmaster Elite Series, the Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Opens Series, the Academy Sports + Outdoors B.A.S.S. Nation presented by Magellan, the Toyota Bonus Bucks Bassmaster Team Championship, the Carhartt Bassmaster College Series presented by Bass Pro Shops and the Costa Bassmaster High School Series presented by DICK’S Sporting Goods.

“Shell Rotella is very excited about the expanded association with B.A.S.S. and the opportunity to work closely with an organization that is committed to bass fishing and outdoor recreation,” said David Waterman, North America marketing manager for Shell Rotella. “Our relationship with B.A.S.S. and bass fishing fans has grown over the past few years and we look forward to our expanded role as a premier sponsor through TV, onsite events and Shell Rotella activations.”

“In addition to being a great partner over the last two years, Shell Rotella was a tremendous help in making our recent Bassmaster Classic in Houston — in their hometown — such a huge success,” said Bruce Akin, B.A.S.S. CEO. “We’re so pleased to have Shell Rotella, which is noted for its high quality heavy duty diesel engine oils, as our newest premier sponsor. Their support for the sport of bass fishing demonstrates their commitment to outdoor recreation.”

Also part of the deal are sponsorship of the “Garage” studio of The Bassmasters TV show on ESPN2 and title sponsorship of the Shell Rotella Bassmaster Get Hooked On Fishing presented by Academy Sports + Outdoors conducted during the recent Bassmaster Classic in Houston.

Shell Rotella will also be able to participate in activation programs at Elite Series and other events through its popular Rotella Road Show trailer and the Rotella T6 BBQ Grill. The interactive design of the Shell Rotella Road Show trailer includes a number of interesting displays starting with how engine oil protects your engine. A demonstration area shows how engine oils may affect fuel efficiency, wear protection, engine cleanliness and prevent acid corrosion. Engine parts show examples of how low viscosity CK-4 and FA-4 prototype engine oils protected against engine wear.

The Rotella T6 BBQ Grill proved to be a fan-favorite addition to Elite Series events in 2016, when Shell Rotella was a supporting sponsor. The 20-foot barbecue trailer includes a grill and a smoker, and cooking is done by the Shell Rotella BBQ team. The Shell Rotella-sponsored world champion cooking team has won more than 30 barbecue and cooking awards.

As a service to fishing fans, information about upcoming Bassmaster events will be posted on Facebook (@ShellRotella), Twitter (@ShellRotella) and Instagram (@ShellRotellaT).

About Shell ROTELLA® Heavy Duty Engine Oil The Shell ROTELLA® brand is committed to making sure that hard working individuals can count on Shell ROTELLA® engine oils to help keep their trucks and equipment operating properly. The Shell ROTELLA® heavy duty engine oil product portfolio is led by three premium heavy duty engine oils that are part of a tiered, easy to understand ladder of protection. They include Shell ROTELLA® T6 Full Synthetic, Shell ROTELLA® T5 Synthetic Blend Technology and Shell ROTELLA® T Triple Protection® Heavy Duty Engine Oils. Shell ROTELLA® is the No. 1 heavy-duty motor oil brand preferred and used among owner operator truck drivers.

Courtesy of BASS Communications.


 
Posted By The Bass Hog

April 22, 2017--James K. Shinn of New Castle, DE won the American Bass Anglers Ram Truck Open Series Maryland tournament, held April 22nd on the Chesapeake Bay.

Running out of Anchor Boats Marina near North East, Maryland, the New Castle, Delaware angler caught five bass weighing 21.33 pounds. He anchored his bag with a 5.49 pound kicker. For the Boater Division victory, Shinn took home a check for $5,000.

“I stayed on the grass flats all day,” Shinn said. “I was fishing in 3 to 7 feet of water.” His fish were caught on a ¾ oz. rattle trap, a slow retrieve was the ticket.

In second for the boaters, Adam Janerella of Jersey Shore, PA. Adam landed a five-bass tournament limit weighing in at 21.00 pounds with a 4.24-pound kicker. He collected $1,250 for the effort.

“I was fishing the flats, slow rolling a dirty jig swim jig, black and blue with a blue trailer” Janerella said.

Timothy Reams of Morgantown, WV took third for the boaters with five bass weighing 20.48 pounds. He anchored his catch with a 4.33-pound kicker to earn $900.

Reams said “I fished the grass flats all day slow rolling a White and Chartreuse chatter bait. “

Finishing fourth, David Kovack of Lancaster, PA landed a five-bass limit for 19.94 pounds including a 5.16-pound kicker.

John Vanore of Mullica Hill, NJ rounded out the top five boaters with five bass at 17.44 pounds topped by a 6.28-pound kicker.

The biggest bass for the boaters was caught, by John Vanore of Mullica Hill, NJ that weighed 6.29 pounds.  Vanore pocketed $660 for his fish.

In the Co-Angler Division, Cherif A. Zaher of Orangeville, PA won with three bass weighing 13.60 pounds. He sealed his victory with a 4.69-pound kicker to pocket a check for $1,700.

“I was slow rolling a white and blue chatter bait over the grass flats." Zaher said.

Taking second for the co-anglers, John C. Doran Jr. of Millersville, MD. Doran Jr. brought in a three-bass division limit weighing 12.62 pounds including a 4.73-pound kicker. He collected $650 for the effort.

Doran said “I was also fishing the grass flats with a black and blue chatter bait."

David T. Williams of Fredericksburg, VA placed third among the co-anglers with three bass weighing 10.98 pounds. He anchored his catch with a 5.06-pound kicker to earn $450.

Williams said “I was fishing wood with a 3/16 black shaky head and had all of my fish within the first two hours of the morning. “

In fourth place among the co-anglers, Kenneth L. Henderson of Milford, VA brought in three bass for 11.16 pounds.

Andy Jones of Pittman, NJ finished in fifth place with three bass at 10.42 pounds topped by a 6.89-pound kicker.

The biggest bass for the co-anglers was caught by: Andy Jones of Pittman, NJ that weighed 6.89 and Andy pocketed $290 for his fish.

Slated for May 13th, the next divisional tournament will be held on the Potomac river out of Smallwood state park near Marbury Maryland. At the end of the season, the best anglers from across the nation advance the 2018 Ray Scott Championship, slated for the Red River in Shreveport-Bossier Louisiana in April 2018.

Courtesy of American Bass Anglers.


 
Posted By The Bass Hog

May 6, 2017--DAYTON, Tenn. – Alabama angler William Weidler of Bessemer, brought a five-bass limit weighing 22 pounds, 3 ounces to the scale Saturday to win the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division finale on Lake Chickamauga presented by Lowrance. Weidler’s two-day total of 10 bass weighing 45 pounds, 2 ounces, was enough to earn him the win by a 1-pound, 7-ounce margin and a check for $48,200.

Normally a three-day event, the tournament was shortened to two days of competition after Thursday, Day One, was canceled due to strong winds and dangerous conditions. The tournament resumed Friday and Saturday with the full field fishing each day. The pro and co-angler winners were determined by the cumulative weight of two days of competition instead of three.

“I think I’m still in shock,” said Weidler, who was fishing in just his third career Costa FLW Series event. “I wasn’t even entered in this tournament and I just decided to get in on Tuesday, this week. To come up here and get the win… I am blown away.”

“After my finish last week, I figured I might just have a chance. I’m a shallow-water fisherman – I caught all of my fish this week swimming a jig in 18 inches of water or less,” Weidler said. “I caught around 35 keepers on Friday and around 30 today. I was fishing transition areas, spawning bays and bluegill beds.”

Weidler said that his most productive area this week was just five minutes from the launch ramp – near the lower end of the island at the mouth of the Hiwassee River. He said that every fish that he caught came on the jig, a black and blue-colored ½-ounce Dirty Jigs No-Jack Swim Jig with an H&H Lures Swamp Frog.

“The frog comes black with white feet, but I dye the feet blue to match the black and blue of the swimjig,” Weidler said.

“The key for me this week was just having patience,” Weidler went on to say. “Around 1 (p.m.) today I didn’t have much weight in the livewell and I started hearing the little voices in my head. But the sun came out and it warmed up, and then some clouds moved in and it got a little overcast. I just knew that they were going to start biting, and they did. I was fishing a bluegill bed and I ended up culling everything in my livewell. It was a magical spot.”

Mike Miller of Trinity, North Carolina, caught a bass weighing 9 pounds, 15 ounces Friday – the biggest of the tournament in the Pro Division. For his catch, Miller earned the day’s Boater Big Bass award of $300.

Also decided Saturday, pro Buddy Gross of Chickamauga, Georgia wrapped up the Costa FLW Series Strike King Angler of the Year Title in the Southeastern Division. With finishes of 8th place at Lake Okeechobee, 1st place at Lake Seminole and a 36th place showing at Lake Chickamauga, Gross accumulated a total of 708 points to take home the title and the $2,000 prize package.

Chase Whisenhunt of Trussville, Alabama, won the Co-angler Division and a new Ranger Z175 boat with a 90-horsepower Evinrude outboard motor. Whisenhunt earned his win with a two-day total of eight bass weighing 28 pounds, 7 ounces.

Puckett caught the biggest bass of the tournament in the Co-angler Division Saturday, a massive largemouth weighing 10 pounds, 7 ounces, and earned the day’s Co-angler Big Bass award of $200.

Co-angler Craig Rozema of Simpsonville, South Carolina won the Costa FLW Series Strike King Co-angler of the Year Title in the Southeastern Division. With finishes of 42nd place at Lake Okeechobee, 2nd place at Lake Seminole and a 6th place finish at Lake Chickamauga, Rozema accumulated a total of 703 points to take home the title and the $800 prize package.

Courtesy of FLW Communications.


 
Posted By The Bass Hog

May 3, 2017--BETHEL ISLAND, Calif. – As many as 400 pros and co-anglers are set to compete in the Costa FLW Series Western Division event at the California Delta, May 11-13. The tournament, which is presented by Power-Pole, is the second of three regular-season events scheduled in the Western Division. Pros will be competing for a top award of up to $40,000 in cash and a new Ranger Z518C boat with a 200-horsepower Evinrude outboard.

“Everything is running a little late on the Delta this year,” said Costa FLW Series pro Mark Lassagne of San Ramon, California, who finished 15th on the Delta when the Series visited in 2016. “Three weeks ago, it got really warm and the fish were moving up and had started spawning. Then a bunch of nasty weather came in and it cooled off. It’s starting to warm up again, but we are 100-percent going to see fish in all three phases of the spawn in this event.

“The weather is going to be the huge factor,” Lassagne continued. “If the wind doesn’t blow and it’s clear, this is going to be a really good sight-fishing tournament. It could be a good topwater time. Drop-shotting Yamamoto Senkos and Roboworms are always strong. ChatterBaits could definitely come into play. Swimming a jig, spinnerbaits, squarebill crankbaits – it’s changing day-to-day.”

Lassagne said that although the Delta has more than 1100 miles of shore line to fish, the lake is fishing somewhat smaller than normal. He expects areas like Frank’s Tract, Mildred Island and Mandeville Island to be extremely popular for tournament anglers.

“There is always the possibility of seeing a 30-pound bag,” Lassagne said. “I think someone is going to catch 30 pounds on the first day, then back it up with 15 pounds on Day Two and another 15 to 18 pounds on Day 3. My guess is that it will take right around 60 pounds to win this event.”

Anglers will take off from Russo’s Marina, located at 3995 Willow Road in Bethel Island, at 6 a.m. PDT each day. Weigh-ins will be held at the park each day beginning at 2 p.m. Takeoffs and weigh-ins are free and open to the public. The event is hosted by Russo’s Marina and the Sugar Barge RV Resort & Marina.

In Costa FLW Series regular-season competition, payouts are based on the number of participants competing in the event. At the California Delta, pros will fish for as much as $40,000 and a Ranger Z518C boat with a 200-horsepower Evinrude outboard if Ranger Cup qualified. Co-anglers will cast for a Ranger Z175 boat with a 90-horsepower Evinrude outboard, and an additional $5,000 if Ranger Cup qualified.

The Costa FLW Series consists of five U.S. divisions – Central, Northern, Southeastern, Southwestern and Western. Each division consists of three tournaments with competitors vying for valuable points that could earn them the opportunity to fish in the Costa FLW Series Championship. The 2017 Costa FLW Series Championship is being held Nov. 2-4 on Kentucky Lake in Paris, Tennessee.

For complete details and updated information visit FLWFishing.com. For regular updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow the Costa FLW Series on Facebook at Facebook.com/FLWFishing and on Twitter at Twitter.com/FLWFishing.

Courtesy of FLW Communications


 
Posted By The Bass Hog

May 4, 2017--LA CROSSE, Wis. – The FLW Tour, the most competitive circuit in professional bass fishing, is set to compete on the Mississippi River May 18-21 in an event presented by Evinrude, when 322 of the world’s most decorated bass pros and co-anglers will be casting for top awards of up to $125,000 cash in the Pro Division and up to $25,000 cash in the Co-angler Division. The event, which is hosted by Explore La Crosse, is the sixth stop of 2017 – the Tour’s 22nd season.

FLW Tour anglers will launch in Pool No. 8, and have the option to lock upriver to Pool No. 7 or downriver to Pool No. 9. These three impoundments provide an ample amount and variety of cover for bass to reside. Vast swaths of vegetation, wing dams, rock jetties, backwater pools and shallow laydowns will all be targeted by anglers.

“I’m hoping the weather warms up a little as the tournament approaches,” said Yamamoto Baits pro Tom Monsoor of La Crosse, a 14-year Tour veteran and six-time Forrest Wood Cup qualifier. “If it does, it’s going to be on fire and they’re really going to catch them. The bass are getting ready to spawn, but this cold snap we’ve had has kind of shut them down. It’s going to all come down to the temperature for this event.

“If the weather warms, both smallmouth and largemouth bass are going to be very active,” Monsoor continued. “They’ll be able to catch both species together in the same spot, which is going to surprise some of the competitors. There are several great backwater lakes in all three pools. Each of them has the potential to produce what’s needed to win this tournament – that’s how good they are.”

Monsoor said the dominant cover for largemouth bass will likely be wood, while smallmouths should converge near rock.

“I’m going to utilize a jig because you can catch both species with it,” said Monsoor. “The rest of the field will be running a variety of lures including ChatterBaits, spinnerbaits, buzzbaits, frogs, worms – they’re going to use just about everything. Whatever technique each angler specializes in, they’re going to catch them doing it.”

“It could take more weight to win, but it will depend on how consistent the guys can be,” said Monsoor. “It’s anybody’s game – believe me. These guys are going to come up here and find bass that have never been fished. They’re going to look at things different than everyone else, and someone’s going to find spots that are new and unique. It’s going to be a fun tournament.”

Competitors will take off at 6:30 a.m. CDT each day from Veterans Freedom Park, located at 1 Clinton St., in La Crosse. Thursday and Friday’s weigh-ins, May 18-19, will be held at Veterans Freedom Park beginning at 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday’s weigh-ins, May 20-21, will also be held at Veterans Freedom Park, but will begin at 4 p.m.

In FLW Tour competition, pros and co-anglers are randomly paired each day, with pros supplying the boat, controlling boat movement and competing against other pros. Co-anglers fish from the back deck against other co-anglers. The full field competes in the two-day opening round. Co-angler competition concludes following Friday’s weigh-in, while the top 20 pros based on their two-day accumulated weight advance to Saturday. Only the top 10 pros continue competition Sunday, with the winner determined by the heaviest accumulated weight from the four days of competition.

The total purse for the FLW Tour at Mississippi River presented by Evinrude is more than $800,000, including $10,000 through 50th place in the Pro Division.

Courtesy of FLW Communications.


 
Posted By The Bass Hog

May 4, 2017--MINNEAPOLIS – Fishing League Worldwide (FLW), the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, and Bass Pro Shops, a leading national retailer of outdoor gear and apparel, announced today a partnership supporting nationwide high school fishing tournaments in an effort to promote both organizations and grow the sport. Effective immediately, Bass Pro Shops will assume title sponsorship of the FLW High School Fishing Opens.

"FLW and Bass Pro Shops share the same passionate audience," said FLW President of Marketing Trish Blake. "Both organizations excel within the outdoors industry. By forming this partnership, we are able to leverage each other's strengths and build upon the synergies between us."

The 2017 Bass Pro Shops FLW High School Fishing Opens is a 24-event series featuring tournaments for High School Fishing anglers around the country. The tournaments are free to enter, and the top 10 percent of teams in each event advance directly to the High School Fishing National Championship, held June 27-July 1 on Pickwick Lake in Florence, Alabama. Qualifiers in tournaments held after June 10 will advance to the 2018 High School Fishing National Championship.

“Bass Pro Shops is deeply committed to helping young people connect with nature through fishing and outdoor recreation,” said noted conservationist and Bass Pro Shops founder/CEO Johnny Morris. “We are very proud to support Fishing League Worldwide and their efforts to grow the sport of fishing with anglers of all ages.”

Per terms of the agreement, Bass Pro Shops will receive exposure at more than 274 FLW-sanctioned bass fishing tournaments and Expos, and through multiple FLW media channels, which include FLWFishing.com and FLW Bass Fishing magazine. Bass Pro Shops gift cards will be featured each month in the FLW Monthly Member Giveaways, and the brand will headline exclusive content across FLW’s social media outlets, which are viewed by hundreds of thousands of outdoor enthusiasts.

In addition to the High School Fishing events, Bass Pro Shops will also be the presenting sponsor of multiple YETI FLW College Fishing tournaments. Select tournaments across all circuits will have registration and/or weigh-in hosted at Bass Pro Shops store locations, and FLW will be showcased in the annual Bass Pro Shops Gone Fishing events planned for summer.

Visit FLWFishing.com for more details or to find out how to start a club at your school.

About FLW

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. For more information visit FLWFishing.com and follow FLW at Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Snapchat.

About Bass Pro Shops®

Under the visionary conservation leadership of Johnny Morris, Bass Pro Shops is known as a national leader in protecting habitat and introducing families to the outdoors and has been named by Forbes as “one of America’s Best Employers.”

Courtesy of FLW Communications.