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5 Bass/22.70 Earns $Ten Grand$ Via Rayburn Team/Splash
By Ed Snyder

- ( 20 lb sacks and 9 lb bass dominate tournament )-

Sealy Outdoors Team/Splash Circuit
Sunday, February 20, 2000, Twin Dikes Marina, Lake Sam Rayburn, TX.

"We never left sight of Twin Dikes Marina, stated the team which had just digitized the top weight for winning the Sealy Outdoors Team/Splash with 5 bass/22.70 lbs. The team had competed against 204 other teams for the win which had "eight" 20 -plus- lb catches weighed-in against them, showing just how close the finish was that would see a top 25 money cutoff of 16.03 lbs that paid out $40,650 in cash & prizes.

With Rayburn buffeted by "brisk" postfront bluebirds, 408 anglers teamed up to compete in the first Sealy Outdoors team/splash bass event for the new Millennium, and with Rayburn providing recent 20 lb "heavy-weights" plus a 13.77 lb trophy for the Texas"Share-A-Lunker" program, the hunt for some major "folding money" bass was on for this "Prime-time" team tournament. And as the teams began filing in with their "blue-bird" catches, the tournament leaderboard would tally an impressive catch of 769 bass weighing 2,006 lbs.

"This is our first event of the season, informed Tournament Director, Bob Sealy, as he went on to explain that they would be holding four team/splash tournaments this year, two on Lake Sam Rayburn, and two on Lake Toledo Bend, with a team/splash championship held as a "split" lake event with 1st day competition on Toledo and 2nd day competition on Rayburn. "We'll be paying out $40,650 in cash & prizes per tournament event, Bob explained, "which is paid out "regardless" of the tournament entry field, "which also includes a $10,000 Triton Bass Boat draw "per tournament" for the anglers who fish our team circuit. "This is our team/splash bass tournament circuit, Bob advises, explaining that Sealy Outdoors also holds the McDonalds Big Bass Splash events, the Shimano Saltwater Big Trout Splash events, the Mega Whitetail Bucks Hunting Contest, the Shimano Big Bass Tournament, Texas Fish & Game Trophy Bass Quest, as well as other Bass Tournament Benefits which are held throughout the year. "We're a fully developed Hunting & Fishing events group, stated Bob Sealy , "explaining that his company works with corporate, organizational, and private entities to provide what they are needing for their fund raiser projects and promotions.

(1st place-5 bass/22.70 lbs)-James Ausmus/Thomas Harry kept their Raycraft/Mercury within site of the marina all day long as they worked Shimano rods and Shimano reels spooled with 17# mono while fishing Tx rigged bloodline & watermelon/chartreuse Ringworms along 9' to 12' mid-cove flats. The winning duo kept within Rayburn Bay all day long where they caught 22 bass from an allday bite for their $10,000 win.

(2nd place-5 bass/22.56 lbs lbs)-Ranger/Evinrude helped to get us there, answered Bob Bryant and Sid Abernathy as they explained how they finished with a 2nd place catch by fishing Shimano rods and Shimano reels spooled with 14 & 16# Triple-Fish line. "We worked 1/2 oz red Traps and 1/2 to 3/4 oz Stanley white/chartreuse spinner baits for our early bite, they stated, further telling of changing to gold Husky Jerks for a late bite which put better fish in the boat. The anglers managed to catch most of their bass from a northlake 3'-to-6' grass-hump for a prime-time bite of between noon and 2:pm for nailing their 2nd place check for $5,000.

(3rd place-5 bass/22.14 lbs)-David Blumb/Randall Ward fished from the deck of their Skeeter/Yamaha while working Allstar/Lews rods and Browning reels spooled with 20# Stren. The 3rd place anglers fished TX rigged green/pumpkin Zoom lizards and 1/2 oz red Traps along northlake point-drops from 2' to 8'. "Logs & laydowns were the key for our luck, the anglers stated as they caught a slow & steady all day bite for 15 bass that culled to their $2,650 3rd place check.

Overall Big Bass-(9.80 lbs)-Dallas Miller and John R. Clark fished 1/2 oz Pelican black/brown/amber jigs around northlake 8' to 10' stickups where Dallas managed to nail a 9:30am big bass bite for the 9.80 lb "overall" that paid him $1,000.

2nd Big Bass-(9.05 lbs)-Eddie Carpenter and James Shaw worked watermelon/red Zoom centipedes along Black Forest shallow 6' grass-flats where James Shaw hooked a 1:pm big bass bite of 9.05 lbs for a 2nd place big bass check of $750.

Top 5 teams;
1-James Ausmus/Thomas Harry-------------------------5 bass/22.70 lbs-$10,000
2-Sid Abernathy/Bob Bryant-----------------------------5 bass/22.56 lbs-$5,000
3-David Blumb/Randall Ward----------------------------5 bass/22.14 lbs-$2,650
4-Billy Baker/Sonny Viola---------------------------------5 bass/22.12 lbs-$1,650
5-Eddie Carpenter/James Shaw--------------------------5 bass/20.87 lbs-$1,600

"Luck-O-The-Draw" Triton Bass Boat valued at $10,000 tickets were pulled by 6 yr old Chelsey Lummus of Dayton TX, as ticket#61 was called-"BUT"-ticket#61 quickly became "HISTORY" for being "AWOL"prompting chelsey to draw ticket# 122 , giving father & son team, Calvin & Brandon Booth of Ft Worth TX, the "2nd chance" keys to a Triton bass boat & trailer.

All bass were live released via the Sealy Outdoors Bass recovery team with 759 bass weighing 2,006 lbs.

For more information on this, as well as other Sealy Outdoors events contact (409)-698-2591 -or clic to- <>

Tournament Sponsors; Triton Boats, OMC/Johnson, Polaris, Academy, McCoy's, Texas Fish & Game, Bennington Marine, Texas Dodge Dealers, The Texas Fishing Show, Latch Oil, Lufkin Marine, Texas State Networks, Jasper Chamber of Commerce, Holiday Inn Express, Ramada Inn Jasper, Best Western, Rayburn Country Resort, The Stump Restaurant, Piney Point Plaza, Needmore Tackle, "and" the Team/Splash Anglers.

1st place team

2nd place team
< photos by Ed Snyder >

overall big bass

2nd big bass

Boat draw winners

top 5 teams

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