Lakecaster Online

26.91 lbs wins the Bass 'N Bucks 2004 season kick off on Sam Rayburn
By Patty Lenderman

December 7, 2003
Twin Dikes Marina, Lake Sam Rayburn

The morning of competition greeted the 265 teams who came to fish the kick off tournament for the 2004 season of Bass 'n Bucks with a blanket of frost and temps in the 30's. Judging by the big bass and the big stringers that came across the scales, the bass seem to like it that way. Top six places weighed in stringers of over 20 pounds, but it was Glen Freeman and Harold Allen that tipped the scales at 26.91 lbs to win $12,000 in cash, including their $2,000 Champion Boat bonus. "When you're fishing against this bunch and culling 4 pounders, it sure feels good" Harold said.

With over $52,000 guaranteed in prize money paid out in 30 overall places plus three big bass places, the teams hit Sam Rayburn on a mission. Limit after limit was weighed and tallied along with several hawgs. James Ausmus and Harry Thomas brought in the biggest bass of the tournament at 11.81 lbs. That was after Kevin Wing and David Ozio weighed in their 10.47 lb'r and Ben Matsubu and Craig Dowling brought in their 9.31 big bass, taking 2nd and 3rd place big bass honors respectively.

It was an incredible weigh in, with All Star Rods giving several of the participants rods from their new line that will be available early January. They have also started a series specially built for serious youth anglers. All of these models will be available at the Houston Boat and Travel show at the Reliance Center in Houston January 9-19.

The bite was an aggressive one with many anglers throwing rattle traps and crank baits. Harold Allen and Glen Freeman, however caught them on a Texas rigged June bug straight tail worm. "We started out with lipless crank baits, rattle traps and hot spots. We had our first limit in 30 minutes, and stayed there for another hour. We had found some (fish) in another area with a drop off, but had left them alone during practice. We went in on them cold. The bite was pretty steady from 10:00 through the rest of the day, and we caught them in up to 18' of water at the drop off. We caught about 3 limits throughout the day" Harold and Glen reported. Harold fished the B.A.S.S. Open Championship Thursday and Friday, and just missed the first cut off by a pound. "The fish were on the same biting pattern on both lakes, just a little deeper on Rayburn". This team is sponsored by Champion Boats, Shimano, Lowrance, Reaction and Yum.

The father and son team of Pete and Lynn Shivers of Kirbyville, TX took second place overall throwing ½ ounce perch colored rattle traps. They found their fish somewhat shallow, in 4-6' depths in grassy area. Around 9:30am was their best bite, and they were able to cull their original 16 lb stringer to their 2nd place overall weight of 22.78 lbs, which included their 6.27 lb kicker fish.

Randy Turner and Jerry McMullen captured 3rd place with 21.68 lbs throwing DD-22's. Throwing in 14'-16' depths over scattered grass, they caught their first limit by 10:00. They caught three more keepers throughout the day which was just enough to land their $3,200 check.

Big Bass of the tournament was weighed in by Harry Thomas and James Ausmus. "She sure is pretty" James commented, and said they caught her around 10:00 on a red crawfish colored crank bait at 15' in a creek channel. The $1,000 first place big bass prize money was sponsored and presented by Kicker Fish Bait Company.

Top 10 overall:
1st 26.91 lbs $10,000 Glen Freeman / Harold Allen
2nd 22.78 lbs $ 4,400 Pete Shivers / Lynn Shivers
3rd 21.68 lbs $ 3,200 Randy Turner / Jerry McMullen
4th 20.80 lbs $ 3,000 James Ausmus / Harry Thomas
5th 20.37 lbs $ 2,200 Glenn Kirk / Mike Metcalf
6th 20.31 lbs $ 2,100 Craig Dowling / Ben Matsubu
7th 19.84 lbs $ 2,040 Kevin Wing / David Ozio
8th 19.83 lbs $ 2,020 Wes Dawson / Teddy Joe Cloide
9th 19.41 lbs $ 2,010 Chris Fontenot / Dan Self
10th 19.13 lbs $ 2,000 Dean Jones / Larry Bell

Top 3 Big Bass:
1st 11.81 lbs $1,000 James Ausmus / Harry Thomas
2nd 10.47 lbs $ 500 Kevin Wing / David Ozio
3rd 9.31 lbs $ 250 Craig Dowling / Ben Matsubu

The next Bass 'N Bucks event will be February 8th, 2004 at the Sam Rayburn Pavillion. All participants who are Champion Boat owners are eligible to win the Champion Bonus, worth $2,000 for a first place finish or $1,000 for the highest finisher should the winner not be in a Champion Boat. Dave and Tricia Concienne want to thank all of the participants and sponsors for a great season kick-off event. For more information on any of the Bass 'N Bucks events, call 409-727-8941, visit their website at or email to

Sponsors include: Champion Boats - All Star Graphite Rods - Kicker Fish Bait Co. - Minn Kota - Rat-L-Trap - Costa Del Mar - Mercury Motors - Lowrance Electronics - Continental Batteries - Dual Pro Charger -Aqua Innovations - - Super 8 Motel - Check it Stick - McFerrin Isurance - BassMedics - Ann's Tackle Shop - Need More Tackle - Rayburn Tackle - Piney Point Plaza - Holiday Inn Express - Toledo Town & Tackle

Harold Allen and Glen Freeman hoist their winning 26.91 lb stringer with the help of Dave Concienne, tournament director

2nd place honors went to the father/son team of Pete and Lynn Shivers, showing the best of their limit weighing in at 22.78 lbs
< photos by Patty Lenderman >

Jerry McMullen and Randy Turner won 3rd place overall with 21.68 lbs

James Ausmus came in first place for Big Bass, and shows us what a Rayburn Hawg looks like at 11.81 lbs

(L-R) Dave Concienne congratulating the top three teams: (1st) Harold Allen / Glen Freeman, (2nd) Pete and Lynn Shivers, (3rd) Jerry McMullen and Randy Turner

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