(Sep 19, 2016 - Grove,)
Benjamin King of Garnett, Kansas, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 14 pounds, 2 ounces, Sunday to win the FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Okie Division Super Tournament on Grand Lake, with a two-day total of 10 bass weighing 29 pounds, 7 ounces. King pocketed $8,349 for his victory.
King said he split his tournament between two patterns – dragging a worm near flats with docks and flipping a creature bait to willows. He said his areas were spread out between Sailboat Bridge and Drowning Creek.
“I used a Mesu Baits Shaky-Head Jig with a worm on the flats, and I flipped a green-pumpkin Reaction Innovations Sweet Beaver in the willows,” said King, who earned his first career win in FLW competition. “I dragged the worm on the bottom from 6 inches to 2 feet of water.”
King said he moved a lot, fishing 15 to 20 areas each day of the event.
“I kept running because I wasn’t catching much,” said King. “The first day I had five keeper bites, and the second day I had six.”
King said his Ardent Apex Elite reel and 7’6” Medium-Heavy Ardent Edge rod were essential to his victory.
“The Ardent equipment was really the difference maker for me,” said King. “It loaded up well, even with that little bait. I felt like I could cast a mile. If I saw one blow up on the flats, I was able to reach it.”
The top 10 boaters finished the tournament in:
1st: Benjamin King, Garnett, Kan., 10 bass, 29-7, $6,349 + $2,000 Ranger Cup Bonus
2nd: Sawyer Grace, Russellville, Ark., 10 bass, 27-8, $3,175
3rd: Chris Torkleson, Sand Springs, Okla., nine bass, 27-5, $2,317
4th: Cade Alsbury, Cave Springs, Ark., 10 bass, 26-6, $1,481
5th: Ryan Wilbanks, Wagoner, Okla., nine bass, 26-3, $1,270
6th: Brandon Mosley, Choctaw, Okla., 10 bass, 25-14, $1,164
7th: Sean McAllister, Checotah, Okla., 10 bass, 24-12, $1,058
8th: Joel Baker, Talala, Okla., 10 bass, 24-8, $1,052
9th: Brett Stearnes, Joplin, Mo., nine bass, 24-3, $1,732
10th: Spencer Grace, Dardanelle, Ark., 10 bass, 22-15, $741
Stearnes caught a bass weighing 5 pounds, 7 ounces – the biggest of the tournament in the pro division – and earned the Boater Big Bass award of $885.
Jason Sandidge of Centerton, Arkansas, won the co-angler division and earned $3,175 with a two-day cumulative catch of eight bass weighing 20 pounds, 6 ounces.
The top 10 co-anglers were:
1st: Jason Sandidge, Centerton, Ark., eight bass, 20-6, $3,175
2nd: Steve Bradfield, Claremore, Okla., six bass, 15-13, $1,808
3rd: Justin Lillie, Owasso, Okla., five bass, 13-15, $1,059
4th: Chris Zins, Oklahoma City, Okla., four bass, 12-8, $741
5th: Justin Newell, Muskogee, Okla., four bass, 11-1, $635
6th: Dick Hindman, Sapulpa, Okla., four bass, 10-15, $582
7th: Kyle Pride, Skiatook, Okla., five bass, 10-11, $529
8th: Marc Logan, Jones, Okla., three bass, 10-2, $476
9th: Paul Loveland, Grove, Okla., three bass, 9-9, $644
10th: Luke Frazier, Skiatook, Okla., four bass, 9-8, $570
Bradfield caught the biggest bass of the tournament in the co-angler division, a fish weighing 4 pounds, 7 ounces, and earned the Co-angler Big Bass award of $221.
The top 50 boaters and 50 co-anglers based on point standings will qualify for the Oct. 27-29 Regional Championship on Lake Dardanelle in Russellville, Arkansas. 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.
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.