(Jun 18, 2017 - MARBURY, Md.)
Yamamoto Baits pro Tom Monsoor of La Crosse, Wisconsin, won the FLW Tour on the Potomac River presented by Costa Sunglasses Sunday after bringing a five-bass limit to the scale weighing 15 pounds, 2 ounces. Monsoor’s four-day cumulative total of 20 bass weighing 66 pounds, 11 ounces was enough to fend off second-place finisher pro Chad Warren of Sand Springs, Oklahoma, by 5 ounces. Monsoor earned $100,000 and his first career Tour victory.
“I’ll tell you what, to finally win my first Tour event is the coolest thing that has ever happened,” said Monsoor, who had eight previous top-10 finishes in Tour competition. “I’ve won a lot of tournaments and awards over the years, but never an FLW Tour event. I could die tomorrow and be a happy man. I don’t want to, obviously, but I’ve had a good life.”
Monsoor said he spent his week picking apart two areas of the Potomac River – a 100- to 200-foot stretch near an area known as Mason’s Neck, and a 100-yard section of water in Quantico Bay. This week, Mason’s Neck gave Monsoor the number of fish he needed to put together limits, while Quantico Bay produced the bigger bites that helped him best the field.
“I started at Mason’s Neck today and like each morning this week, I got a limit by 8:30 (a.m.),” said Monsoor. “I culled one fish and then headed to Quantico. I made the run because I knew it would be out of the wind, and you can’t beat Mother Nature. I figured I’d go to the only place I knew that was protected and that was it.”
Monsoor said he caught two fish from Mason’s Neck that culled before his day concluded.
“The limit-spot in Mason’s Neck was about 2-feet-deep and had black, nasty weeds,” said Monsoor. “The big-fish spot in Quantico Bay was around 4-feet-deep and had clean weeds. I think that’s why the bigger fish were there this week.”
Monsoor said every fish he weighed in during the tournament was caught on a black and blue-colored swimjig with a Yamamoto Baits Flappin’ Hog trailer of the same color.
“It has two tails that flap like an old jig ‘n pig, only this one is cooler,” said Monsoor. “The fish liked the Flappin’ Hog because it wasn’t overwhelming. It was simple – there wasn’t too much going on with it.
The top 10 pros finished on the Potomac River:
1st: Yamamoto Baits pro Tom Monsoor, La Crosse, Wis., 20 bass, 66-11, $100,200
2nd: Chad Warren, Sand Springs, Okla., 20 bass, 66-6, $30,100
3rd: Chris Johnston, Peterborough, Ontario, Canada, 20 bass, 65-8, $25,000
4th: Cody Meyer, Auburn, Calif., 20 bass, 64-11, $20,000
5th: Michael Neal, Dayton, Tenn., 20 bass, 64-3, $19,000
6th: Brandon McMillan, Clewiston, Fla., 20 bass, 63-2, $18,000
7th: Jeff Sprague, Point, Texas, 20 bass, 59-8, $17,000
8th: Mike Surman, Boca Raton, Fla., 20 bass, 59-1, $16,000
9th: Brandon Cobb, Greenwood, S.C., 20 bass, 57-11, $15,000
10th: Andy Young, Mound, Minn., 17 bass, 52-8, $14,000
Overall there were 47 bass weighing 128 pounds, 13 ounces caught by pros Sunday. Nine pros brought a five-bass limit to the scale.
Bryan Thrift of Shelby, North Carolina, clinched the 2017 FLW Tour Angler of the Year title Friday after accumulating 1,122 points in the annual Angler of the Year race. Thrift’s incredible regular-season was highlighted by four top-10 finishes including two back-to-back second-place efforts. Along with the title, Thrift earned $100,000 and an automatic berth into the 2018 Forrest Wood Cup.
Bradley Dortch of Atmore, Alabama, claimed the FLW Tour Rookie of the Year award, which is awarded to the rookie pro angler who finishes the season with the highest point total.
Ryan Cannon of Bullard, Texas, won the Co-angler Division and $20,000 Friday with a two-day catch of 10 bass weighing 33 pounds, 6 ounces, followed by Richie Eaves of Nauvoo, Illinois, who finished in second place with 10 bass totaling 30 pounds, 3 ounces, worth $7,750.
Gary Haraguchi of Redding, California, won the FLW Tour Co-angler of the Year title and a new Ranger Z518C boat with a 200-horsepower Evinrude outboard.
In FLW Tour competition, pros and co-anglers are randomly paired each day, with pros supplying the boat, controlling boat movement and competing against other pros. Co-anglers fish from the back deck against other co-anglers. The full field of anglers competed Thursday and Friday. Co-angler competition concluded following Friday’s weigh-in, while the top 20 pros based on their two-day accumulated weight advanced to Saturday. Only the top 10 pros continued competition Sunday, with the winner determined by the heaviest accumulated weight from the four days of competition.
Throughout the season, anglers were also vying for valuable points in hopes of qualifying for the 2017 Forrest Wood Cup, the world championship of professional bass fishing. The 2017 Forrest Wood Cup will be on Lake Murray in Columbia, South Carolina, Aug. 11-13.
The FLW Tour at the Potomac River presented by Costa Sunglasses was hosted by the Charles County Board of Commissioners. The next event for FLW Tour anglers is the final event of the 2017 tournament-season – the Forrest Wood Cup championship.
Television coverage of the FLW Tour at the Potomac River presented by Costa Sunglasses will premiere in high-definition (HD) on NBC Sports Network (NBCSN) Sept. 20 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.
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.