Chris Wilkinson of Farmersburg, Indiana, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 14 pounds, 7 ounces, Saturday to win the second FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Buckeye Division tournament of 2016 on the Ohio River, presented by Power-Pole. For his victory, Wilkinson took home $4,905.
“This was my fourth BFL win with FLW, but it had been awhile and you never really know when you’re going to win the next one,” says Wilkinson, who was a 2013 BFL All-American qualifer. “It was awesome to grind out a win in a very tough tournament.
“It was overcast and rainy, and I was looking for and fishing patches of river grass that had the wind blowing into it,” Wilkinson continues. “I caught a small limit early in the morning on a 1/8-ounce white and chartreuse Hawgback Lures spinnerbait, but I knew that the winning fish weren’t there.
“I ended up moving back into a cut that was out of the current and wind and caught a 4-pound, 6-ounce kicker on my third cast. I was throwing a black Hawgback Lures buzzbait, and I ended up upgrading my entire limit there. I caught around 12 keepers on the day.”
Wilkinson credited his G. Loomis rod and Shimano Aldebaran reel as being the difference on a tough day of fishing.
“Once I figured out that the fish were in areas that were out of the current, it was an awesome day,” Wilkinson says. “I fished clean all day long and didn’t lose any.”
The top 10 boaters:
1st: Chris Wilkinson, Farmersburg, Ind., five bass, 14-7, $4,905
2nd: Sean Wieda, Florence, Ky., five bass, 12-7, $2,453
3rd: Miles Johnson, Kettering, Ohio, five bass, 12-1, $1,935
4th: Neal Ramsey, Harrison, Ohio, five bass, 11-2, $1,145
5th: Dick Schaffer, Rockford, Ohio, five bass, 10-13, $981
6th: Cody Seeger, Lewistown, Ohio, five bass, 10-7, $899
7th: Daniel Sepeck, Bethel, Ohio, five bass, 10-1, $818
8th: Scott Manson, Covington, Ohio, four bass, 9-12, $736
9th: Jim Vitaro, Wooster, Ohio, four bass, 8-13, $654
10th: Kyle Weisenburger, Ottawa, Ohio, five bass, 8-11, $572
Complete results can be found here.
Charlie Smith of Union, Kentucky, caught a 4-pound, 11-ounce bass – the biggest of the tournament in the boater division – and earned the day’s Boater Big Bass award of $740.
Weisenburger wins co-angler title
Ron Weisenburger of Continental, Ohio, weighed in five bass totaling 10 pounds, 6 ounces Saturday to earn $2,348 and win the co-angler division.
The top 10 co-anglers:
1st: Ron Weisenburger, Continental, Ohio, five bass, 10-6, $2,348
2nd: Brody Campbell, Oxford, Ohio, five bass, 8-11, $1,174
3rd: J.R. Selke, Waynesville, Ohio, five bass, 7-14, $1,131
4th: Brent Jones, Okeana, Ohio, five bass, 6-3, $548
5th: Steve Garman, Dayton, Ohio, three bass, 6-1, $470
6th: Brett Warrick, Westerville, Ohio, four bass, 5-15, $430
7th: James Wilcox, Cincinnati, Ohio, four bass, 5-11, $391
8th: Tad Bosley, Canton, Ohio, four bass, 5-9, $352
9th: Gary Hoffman, Stoutsville, Ohio, four bass, 5-8, $293
9th: Aaron Kuhlmann, Hamilton, Ohio, four bass, 5-8, $293
Selke caught the biggest bass of the tournament in the co-angler division, a fish weighing 2 pounds, 15 ounces and earned the day’s Co-angler Big Bass award of $350.
The top 50 boaters and 50 co-anglers based on point standings will qualify for the Oct. 13-15 Regional Championship on Kentucky and Barkley lakes in Gilbertsville, Kentucky. 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.