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Lakecaster Pro Lands Rayburn Super Wal-Mart BFL
By Ed Snyder

Operation Bass/Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League-Cowboy Division
Sunday, September 30, Jasper Wal-Mart Super-Store, Lake Sam Rayburn, TX.

With the competitor field whittled down from the original draw of 282 anglers to the top 21 Boaters & Co-Boaters, final day of competition was expected to provide some exciting moments at the weigh-in scale as all anglers went for broke to try to gain points to make the Regional cut, and hopefully qualify for the National Championship. And as the 4:pm weigh-in tallied its final bass, Goodrich TX, angler, Scott David managed to claim the first place title for the Boaters Division, and Austin TX, angler, Joe Cole JR. topped the Co-Boaters leader-board.

Special Notice- The Wal-Mart BFL Wildcard Tourney will be held on Kentucky Lake on October 30th thru- November 3, 2001. Call Operation Bass for more info:

Part of the Operation Bass tournament group, the Wal-Mart BFL Super Tournaments feature a boater and co-angler format to accommodate anglers of various skill levels. They also use a 400-point scoring system that ensures equitable treatment of all competitors. Under the system, an angler receives 400 points for a win, 399 points for second, 398 points for third and so on. Every angler who receives weight credit during a tournament receives points. This two-day Super Tournament is the final Cowboy Division event in the new 119-event national series for weekend anglers.

The top 30 boaters and top 30 co-anglers in the Cowboy Division will advance to regional competition Oct. 16-20 on the Red River near Shreveport, La., where they will go up against top competitors from the Okie, Arkie and Mississippi divisions for a shot at qualifying for the BFL All-American, which features an estimated purse of $345,000 and ranks as one of the most lucrative post-season tournaments in competitive angling.

BFL-ReCap: Day-1- Leading Boater-(16-3 lbs)- Deryl Janzen of Hemphill TX, fished 8' to 10' grass with white MR. Blitz spinner-baits from south-lake, Buck Bay, to the 147 bridge to make the #1 spot. Day-1-Overall Boater Big Bass-(7-15 lbs)- Mike Cannon of Leesburg TX, was fishing a FLA rigged green/pumpkin Zoom brush-hog along an 8' grass-patch for an 8:30 am big bite that put a 7-15 lb big bass in his boat as well as a $1,410 Big Bass check in his pocket. Day-1- Overall Co-Boater Big Bass-(4-8 lbs)- Steve Howell of San Augustine TX, was fishing a FLA rigged 8" Zoom plum-apple worm along a 10' Black Forest timber-patch when a 4-8 lb bass hit on a 2pm big bite for a $705 payday.

Day-2-Dawned with much the same conditions as day-2 with light to scruffy northeast winds and high bluebird sunshine. But this was a new day with new weights to be caught as all previous marks were nullified.

1st place boater-(12-7 lbs)-Scott David of Goodrich TX, put his Basscat/Mercury bass-rig "way up north" on Ayish Bayou beanie bushes to work Kistler rods and Plueger reels spooled with 20 lb test P-line. The Lakecaster Pro/Angler fished ½ oz white Stanley Titanium spinner-baits with gold willow blades along ridges & drains that had beanie bush drops. The Kickapoo Creek Bait-shop angler managed to catch his 1st place win from an all day shallow bite that occurred in 1' to 2' & 1 / 2 of water.

2nd place boater-(11-14 lbs)-Jeff Buchanan of Lufkin TX, ran his Ranger/Mercury bass-rig to Black Forest shallow grass and "north" of the 147 bridge deep drops to work Kistler rods and Shimano reels spooled with 15 lb test P-line. The Stanley Baits Pro/Angler fished Carolina rigged watermelon/seed Zoom centipedes for his early shallow bite and Texas rigged Zoom red-bug U-Tail worms along 20' drop-offs for his deeper bite.

Ranger Boats Bonus Winner-Chris McCall/Jasper TX-$500

Boater Payout-$29,044

Top Boaters:
1-S.David/Goodrich TX------------------12-7-$8,344
2-J.Buchanan/Lufkin TX-----------------11-14-$4,172
3-D.Wharton/Sam Rayburn TX---------10/15-$2,086
4-B.Hudspeth/Kilgore TX----------------10-13-$1,808
5-T.Owens/Athens TX--------------------10-7-$1,669
6-C.McCall/Jasper TX---------------------10-2-$1,390
7-D.Joiner/Pickton TX---------------------9-8-$1,252
8-D.Janzen/Hemphill TX------------------9-4-$973
9-M.Cannon/Leesburg TX-----------------7-12-$835
10-B.Vote/Kingwood TX-------------------6-13-$696
11-R.Carter/Longview TX-----------------6-12-$668
12-B.Guillory/Jasper TX-------------------4-12-$640
13-S.Pebley/Cooper TX--------------------4-4-$612
14-M.Stegall/Groves TX--------------------3-13-$584
15-D.Duhon/Orange TX---------------------3-9-$556
16-J.Hale/Lufkin TX--------------------------3-5-$529
17-R.G.Wilson/Sherman TX-----------------3-0-$501
18-G.T.Cantrell/Pasadena TX---------------2-6-$472
19-B.Bryant/Nacogdoches TX---------------1-15-$445
20-M.Lowery/Etoile TX-----------------------1-13-$417
21-R.Bowman/Shreveport LA----------------0-0-$397

All bass recovered and live released by the BFL fish recovery team.
Day-1 Boater tally-269 bass weighing 609 lbs.

1st place Co Boater-(9-10 lb)-fished with Scott Bailey and John Hale to catch his win by working castaway rods and Shimano reels spooled with 17 lb test Berkley Big Game mono. The Austin TX, angler fished 3/8 oz Stanley golden bream spinner-baits with Zoom smoke trailers and chrome/blue ¼ oz Rattle Traps to catch his winning co-boater weight.

Day-2-Overall Big Bass-(6-2 lbs)-caught by Chris Key of Bryan TX, who fished with Tony Owens of Athens TX, today around Veach Basin grass-islands. Chris used a Berkley rod and Shimano reel spooled with 20 lb test Berkley mono while fishing a 3/8 oz white Boogerman buzz-bait for his 7:30 am big bite-(no big bass money for day-2)-

Co-Boater Payout-$14,522

Top Co-Anglers:
1-J.Cole JR/Austin TX----------------9-10-$4,172
2-C.Key/Bryan TX--------------------6-2-$2,086
3-D.weeks/Big Sandy TX------------4-12-$1,043
4-C.Dellard/Burleson TX-------------4-11-$904
5-J.Chumley/Diboll TX---------------4-8-$835
6-D.Jorgensen/Austin TX-------------3-12-$695
7-R.A.Whittle/Freeport TX------------2-8-$626
8-S.Bailey/Longview TX---------------2-4-$487
9-D.Hicks/DeRidder LA----------------2-3-$417
10-B.Boyett/Willis TX------------------2-0-$348
11-R.Pinkston/Center TX---------------1-13-$334
12-B.Mayo/Tyler TX--------------------1-13-$320
13-R.Willis/Spring TX-------------------1-10-$306
14-B.Parrish/Center TX-----------------1-8-$292
15-R.Leggett/Alvin TX-------------------0-0-$278
16-V.Gustafson/Plugerville TX----------0-0-$264
17-B.Keller/Bryan TX--------------------0-0-$250
18-J.Mastro/Lufkin TX-------------------0-0-$236
19-C.Dubroc/Hessmer LA---------------0-0-$222
20-J.Walker/Garland TX-----------------0-0-$209
21-D.Hocking/Houston TX---------------0-0-$199

Day-1 Co-Boater Tally- 159 bass weighing 354 lbs.
Day-2 N/A

Nationwide, the BFL is divided into 22 divisions-each featuring four one-day qualifying tournaments and a two-day Super Tournament. Entry fees in each qualifying event are $150 for boaters and $75 for co-anglers. Entry fees for Super Tournaments are doubled, as are payouts.

Awards for the 2001 BFL season could reach $5.7 million based on full fields at each tournament. Additionally, Ranger Boats will award a new Ranger 518VX Comanche bass boat to the highest placing participant in the Ranger Cup incentive program at the Wal-Mart BFL All-American. Ranger Cup participants are also eligible to win a $500 to $1,000 bonus at each BFL tournament. Anglers using a fixed-mount GARMIN sonar are also eligible to win a $1,000 bonus at each BFL tournament as part of the GARMIN Grand Giveaway.

Sponsors of the 2001 Wal-Mart BFL are ALPO Pet Foods, BC Powder, BFGoodrich Tires, Black & Decker, Chevy Trucks, CITGO, Coleman, Conseco, Energizer, EverStart Batteries, Frito-Lay, FujiFilm, Garmin, Kellogg's, Land O'Lakes, Mercury Marine, Minn Kota, Pepsi, Poulan, Pure Fishing, Ranger Boats, Snickers Cruncher Bar, Stren, Shop-Vac, Timex, US Bank, Visa, Weed Eater, Wrangler and Yamaha Outboards. ACDelco is an associate sponsor of the Wal-Mart BFL. "and" the BFL Super Team Anglers

Jeff Buchanan of Lufkin TX takes 2nd Boater Division

Scott David of Goodrich TX wins 1st place Boater Division Title

< photos by >

Chris McCall of Jasper TX lands the $500 Ranger Cup Bonus

Chris Key of Bryan TX with his 6-2 lb day-2 Big Bass

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