(Apr 13, 2016 - Lakeport. CA)
FLW College Fishing is headed to Clear Lake on April 23 for the second of three regular-season bass-fishing tournaments in the Western Conference. A full field of college teams will be competing for a top award of $2,000 and a berth in the FLW College Fishing National Championship.
“This is going to be a really exciting tournament,” said Costa FLW Series pro Joe Uribe Jr., who has four previous top-10 finishes on Clear Lake in FLW competition. “The fish are getting bigger and bigger at Clear Lake every year. Already this spring I’ve heard of a 14- and a16-pounder being caught, and there is just an abundance of 4½- to 5½-pound fish there. And there really is no home lake advantage there – you can catch them so many different ways and teams can really fish their strengths.
“The lake is completely full right now and the water levels are the highest that I have ever seen it,” Uribe continued. “That’s going to open up a lot of new cover and areas to fish. The tournament is also taking place during a full moon phase, so another wave of fish will be moving up to spawn. Teams are going to find fish in all three phases of the spawn.”
Because of the high water levels, Uribe expects a lot of weedless-type baits to be in play. Topwater baits, frogs, big swimbaits, ChatterBaits and drop-shot rigs were all mentioned as possible tournament winners.
“Clear Lake is a really special place,” Uribe went on to say. “You are never really ‘out’ of it on Clear Lake. The big fish tend to group up, and you can pull up on one spot and load the boat with 30 pounds very easily, especially in the late afternoon. You might have a tough day, but don’t ever give up because you never know when you’ll stumble into some big ones.”
Uribe predicted a five-bass limit weighing 25 to 30 pounds would likely win the tournament.
Anglers will take off from Konocti Vista Casino Resort & Marina located at 2755 Mission Rancheria Road in Lakeport, California, at 6:30 a.m. PDT Saturday. Weigh-in will be held at the marina beginning at 1:30 p.m. Takeoff and weigh-in are free and open to the public.
Schools are allowed to register up until the morning of the tournament. Entries may be made either by phone or at CollegeFishing.com.
Schools currently registered to compete in the Clear Lake tournament, which is hosted by the Konocti Vista Casino Resort & Marina, include:
California Polytechnic State University – Clayton Lauchland, Lodi, Calif., and Christopher Leclair, Santa Clarita, Calif.
California Polytechnic State University – Johan Eide, Sebastopol, Calif., and Colton Farquer, Oakdale, Calif.
California State University – Rick Zatarain, Long Beach, Calif., and Seth Meyer, Lancaster, Calif.
California State University – Cole Thomas, Lakewood, Calif., and Via Thao, Long Beach, Calif.
California State University-Chico – Cole Lauchland, Lodi, Calif., and Alec O’Rourke, Newcastle, Calif.
California State University-Chico – Andrew Loberg, Rocklin, Calif., and Travis Bounds, Roseville, Calif.
California State University-Chico – Carson Leber, Dixon, Calif., and Lucas Boxwell, Auburn, Calif.
California State University-Chico – Michael Woods, Olivehurst, Calif., and Chas Brannon, Santa Maria, Calif.
California State University-Chico – David Griswold, Oroville, Calif., and Jeremy Andreasen, Chico, Calif.
California State University-Chico – Jakob Conlan and Frank Tomasello, both of Morgan Hill, Calif.
California State University-Chico – Kevin Chen and Koulton Westbrook, both of Vacaville, Calif.
California State University-Chico – Travis Strain and Sean Huber, both of Chico, Calif.
California State University-Sacramento – Jeff Taluban, Salinas, Calif., and Daniel Rodriguez, Selma, Calif.
California State University-Sacramento – Gerardo Reyna, Colusa, Calif., and Edward Worden, Shasta Lake, Calif.
Humboldt State University – Joseph Schiavoni, Fairfield, Calif., and Alex Robbins, Novato, Calif.
Humboldt State University – Drew White, Auburn, Calif., and Graeme Lock, La Crescenta, Calif.
Humboldt State University – Jeffrey Teel, Vacaville, Calif., and Spencer Butler, Fairfield, Calif.
Humboldt State University – Tristan Merlaud, Sebastopol, Calif., and Rudy Directo, Alpine, Calif.
Oregon State University – Brandon Hua, Hillsboro, Ore., and Alex Cowlthorp, Beaverton, Ore.
Oregon State University – Eric Strickler, Florence, Ore., and Max Kitzmiller, Wilsonville, Ore.
Oregon State University – Zach MacDonald, Willits, Calif., and Zach Martinez, Linden, Calif.
University of Idaho – Tanner Mort, Coeur D’Alene, Idaho, and Austin Turpin, Moscow, Idaho
University of Southern California – Nick Nikchevich, Thousand Oaks, Calif., and Elliott Beckstrom, Santa Cruz, Calif.
FLW College Fishing teams compete in regular-season qualifying tournaments in one of five conferences – Central, Northern, Southern, Southeastern and Western. The top 10 teams from each regular-season tournament will advance to the 2016 FLW College Fishing National Championship.
College Fishing is free to enter. All participants must be registered, full-time students at a college, university or community college and members of a fishing club recognized by their college or university.
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 2016 across five tournament circuits. Headquartered in Benton, Kentucky, with offices in Minneapolis, FLW conducts more than 235 bass-fishing tournaments annually across the United States and sanctions tournaments in Canada, China, Mexico 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.