(Jun 2, 2017 - Florence, AL)
Boater Marshall Deakins of Dunlap, Tennessee, extended his lead at the 34th annual T-H Marine Bass Fishing League (BFL) All-American on Pickwick Lake Friday with five bass weighing 20 pounds, 11 ounces, bringing his two-day cumulative total to 10 bass weighing 45 pounds, 1 ounce. Deakins will begin the final day of competition with a commanding 10-pound, 10-ounce advantage over second-place angler Brent Anderson of Kingston Springs, Tennessee, who has a two-day total of 10 bass weighing 34 pounds, 7 ounces.
The BFL All-American features 98 of the best boaters and co-anglers from across the 24-division T-H Marine BFL circuit casting for cash prizes of up to $120,000 in the Boater Division and $60,000 in the Co-angler Division. In addition to the six-figure payout, the top boater will receive an invitation to compete for bass fishing’s most coveted prize – the Forrest Wood Cup – held Aug. 11-13 on Lake Murray in Columbia, South Carolina.
“I caught a lot of small ones today and had 15 pounds in the boat for a long time,” said Deakins, who is competing in his first career All-American. “I was throwing the same Profound Lures football-head jig that I did yesterday, and hit seven or eight areas. I caught fish at each of them, but most were 2- to 2½-pounders.”
Deakins said the areas that he targeted were between Waterloo and the end of Seven Mile Island. He said most of his fish today were relating to shell beds and rocks.
“I’m working the jig slow and letting the current do the fishing,” said Deakins. “I’m throwing up the ledges and along them. There was one area – a 50-yard stretch – that had a pile of rocks sticking out from the ledge, and that’s where they were positioned.”
Deakins said he capped of his limit at 2 p.m. with his two biggest fish of the day. He said he plans to return to his same areas from Days One and Two to finish out the event.
“They are the only areas I’ve got, and I’ve caught big ones from them this week,” said Deakins.
The top 10 boaters advancing to the final day of competition on Pickwick Lake are:
1st: Marshall Deakins, Dunlap, Tenn., 10 bass, 45-1
2nd: Brent Anderson, Kingston Springs, Tenn., 10 bass, 34-7
3rd: Jeff Knight, Cleveland, Tenn., 10 bass, 34-6
4th: Justin Atkins, Florence, Ala., 10 bass, 34-4
5th: Brandon Gray, Bullock, N.C., 10 bass, 32-13
6th: Ronald Nutter, Saint Louisville, Ohio, 10 bass, 32-11
7th: Mike Brueggen, La Crosse, Wis., 10 bass, 32-2
8th: Brad Fowler, Townville, S.C., 10 bass, 31-11
9th: William Merrick, Mount Juliet, Tenn., 10 bass, 31-11
10th: Lloyd Pickett Jr., Bartlett, Tenn., 10 bass, 31-4
Overall there were 208 bass weighing 572 pounds, 13 ounces caught by 47 boaters Friday. The catch included 34 five-bass limits.
Alex Hester of Crossville, Tennessee, leads the Co-angler Division with a two-day total of 10 bass weighing 28 pounds, 2 ounces, followed by Randy Westerfield of Constantine, Mich., in second place with nine bass weighing 27-5.
The top 10 co-anglers are:
1st: Alex Hester, Crossville, Tenn., 10 bass, 28-2
2nd: Randy Westerfield, Constantine, Mich., nine bass, 27-5
3rd: Greg Ravitsky, Ashburn, Va., 10 bass, 25-3
4th: Dennis Taylor, Murray, Ky., eight bass, 23-14
5th: Jim Budde, Waterloo, Ill., 10 bass, 23-7
6th: Pat Kendrick, Bumpass, Va., eight bass, 22-11
7th: Jacob Harris, Bonne Terre, Mo., nine bass, 22-6
8th: Brody Campbell, Oxford, Ohio, eight bass, 21-14
9th: Peter Balishin, Sharps Chapel, Tenn., eight bass, 21-4
10th: Jim Stone, Greenwood, Ind., nine bass, 21-1
Overall there were 148 bass weighing 356 pounds even caught by 47 Co-anglers Friday. The catch included 16 five-bass limits.
The final 10 boaters will take off from McFarland Park located at 200 Jim Spain Drive in Florence at 7 a.m. CDT Saturday. Saturday’s championship weigh-in will be held at McFarland Park, and will begin at 3:30 p.m. Takeoffs and weigh-ins are free and open to the public.
The 2017 BFL All-American on Pickwick Lake is being hosted by the Florence/Lauderdale Tourism Bureau.
Television coverage of the T-H Marine BFL All-American at Pickwick Lake will premiere in high-definition (HD) on NBC Sports Network (NBCSN) Oct. 11 from Noon-1 p.m. EDT. The Emmy-nominated "FLW" television show airs on NBCSN, the Pursuit Channel and the World Fishing Network and is broadcast to more than 564 million households worldwide, making it the most widely distributed weekly outdoors-sports television show in the world.
The 2017 BFL is a 24-division circuit devoted to weekend anglers, with 128 tournaments throughout the season, five qualifying events in each division. The top 45 boaters and co-anglers from each division, along with the five winners of the qualifying events, will advance to one of six regional tournaments where they 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 performers in the BFL can move up to the Costa FLW Series or even the FLW Tour.
For a full schedule of events, complete details and updated information visit FLWFishing.com.
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 2017 across five tournament circuits. Headquartered in Benton, Kentucky, with offices in Minneapolis, FLW conducts more than 274 bass-fishing tournaments annually across the United States and sanctions tournaments in Canada, China, Mexico, South Africa 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.