Fishing & Boating News

Benton’s Barga Wins FLW Bass Fishing League LBL Division Finale on Kentucky Lake

Futch wins co-angler title

by: Brian Johnson, FLW

Stephen Barga of Benton, KY, weighed a 5-bass limit totaling 19 pounds, 6 ounces, to win the (BFL) LBL Division Super Tournament on Kentucky and Barkley lakes with a 2-day total of 10 bass weighing 40 lbs, 2 ozs
Photo by courtesy FLW Outdoors
(Sep 13, 2016 - GILBERTSVILLE, Ky.)

Stephen Barga of Benton, Kentucky, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 19 pounds, 6 ounces, Sunday to win the FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) LBL Division Super Tournament on Kentucky and Barkley lakes with a two-day total of 10 bass weighing 40 pounds, 2 ounces. For his win, Barga pocketed $7,717.
Barga said he spent the event focusing on wood, stumps and brush piles in the Jonathan Creek area.

“I had two key stretches that I ran between each day of the tournament,” said Barga, who earned his first win in FLW competition. “One was about 50 yards long, and the other was a 30-foot stake bed. The stake bed ended up being very valuable. I caught a key bass off of it each day.”

Barga said he used a chartreuse and white-colored War Eagle Spinnerbait to catch nearly 15 keepers over the two-day event.

“I just slow-rolled the War Eagle and caught five keepers on Day One,” said Barga. “Most of my fish were about six feet down. On Day Two, I followed the same pattern from Saturday and had every fish that I weighed in by 8 a.m.”

The top 10 boaters finished the tournament in:
               1st:          Stephen Barga, Benton, Ky., 10 bass, 40-2, $5,717 + $2,000 Ranger Cup Bonus
               2nd:         Matt Robertson, Central City, Ky., 10 bass, 35-4, $2,759
               3rd:          Josh Malone, Alma, Ill., 10 bass, 29-10, $1,839
               4th:          Tim Smiley, White Pine, Tenn., 10 bass, 29-4, $1,587
               5th:          Drew Boggs, Lebanon, Tenn., 10 bass, 28-5, $1,103
               6th:          Billy Schroeder, Paducah, Ky., eight bass, 28-2, $1,012
               7th:          Scott Patton, Paris, Tenn., eight bass, 26-9, $920
               8th:          Dan Morehead, Paducah, Ky., nine bass, 23-15, $828
               9th:          Gerald Andrews, Benton, Ky., nine bass, 23-12, $736
               10th:        Sam Boss, Paducah, Ky., eight bass, 23-5, $644

Edward Gettys of Paris, Tennessee, caught a bass weighing 6 pounds, 13 ounces – the biggest of the tournament in the pro division – and earned the Boater Big Bass award of $720.

Brian Futch of Vienna, Illinois, won the co-angler division and earned $2,759 with a two-day cumulative catch of six bass weighing 20 pounds, 6 ounces.

The top 10 co-anglers were:
               1st:          Brian Futch, Vienna, Ill., six bass, 20-6, $2,759
               2nd:         Ricky Boehringer, Troy, Ohio, seven bass, 17-1, $1,479
               3rd:          Danny Nicklin, Highland, Ill., eight bass, 16-15, $919
               4th:          Thomas  White, Iron City, Tenn., five bass, 16-7, $694
               5th:          Jeff Scrimager, Mattoon, Ill., five bass, 15-11, $552
               6th:          Jesse Gustafson, Gilbertsville, Ky., five bass, 15-7, $506
               7th:          Kevin Teitsort, Paducah, Ky., five bass, 14-14, $460
               8th:          Danny Robinson, Fairland, Ind., five bass, 14-6, $414
               9th:          Michael Luce, Ledbetter, Ky., four bass, 14-3, $728
               10th:        Billy Watson, Murfreesboro, Tenn., six bass, 14-3, $322

Luce caught the biggest bass of the tournament in the co-angler division, a fish weighing 6 pounds, 11 ounces, and earned the Co-angler Big Bass award of $360.

The top 50 boaters and 50 co-anglers based on point standings will qualify for the Sept. 29 - Oct. 1 Regional Championship on Lake Chickamauga in Dayton, Tennessee. Boaters will compete for a top award of a Ranger Z518C with a 200-horsepower Evinrude or Mercury outboard and $20,000, while co-anglers will fish for a new Ranger Z518C with a 200-horsepower Evinrude or Mercury outboard.

The BFL is a 24-division circuit devoted to weekend anglers, with 120 tournaments throughout the season, five in each division. The top 50 boaters and co-anglers from each division qualify for a regional tournament and 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 winners in the BFL can move up to the Costa FLW Series or even the Walmart FLW Tour.

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 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.