Raymond Jones III of Statesville, North Carolina, took top honors at the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Piedmont Division tournament on Lake Gaston Saturday after bringing a five-bass limit weighing 16 pounds, 11 ounces to the scale. For his win, Jones pocketed $7,473.
“The Piedmont Division is really strong so I’m very fortunate to come out with a win,” said Jones, who earned his first career-victory in BFL competition. “In practice I was able to find some water that wasn’t clear, but wasn’t completely muddied up either. It was mid-lake, and that’s where I ended up spending my day."
Jones said he lost three solid bass in the morning, but was able to grind out a limit by 10 a.m.
“I had a milk run that we followed until lunchtime,” said Jones. “We’d catch them in that mid-lake stained water and then leave it alone to replenish. I had plenty of bites the rest of the day, but only caught eight keepers.”
Jones said he used a homemade spinnerbait and two soft-plastics to catch his fish.
“The spinnerbait was the reaction bait,” said Jones. “I covered a lot of water with it, and then worked them over with the soft-plastics. It was a one-two punch with the soft-plastics. Sometimes I had to rotate body-style, and their colors, to trigger bites.”
The top 10 boaters finished the tournament in:
1st: Raymond Jones III, Statesville, N.C., five bass, 16-11, $5,473 + $2,000 Ranger Cup Bonus
2nd: James Blankenship, Siler City, N.C., five bass, 16-10, $2,936
3rd: Jeffrey Thomas, Broadway, N.C., five bass, 16-8, $1,756
4th: Jerry Davis, Lexington, N.C., five bass, 15-5, $1,230
5th: Ryan Harrell, Roanoke Rapids, N.C., five bass, 15-0, $1,155
6th: Burley Langford, South Chesterfield, Va., five bass, 14-12, $967
7th: Chris Daves, Spring Grove, Va., five bass, 14-4, $879
8th: Ryan Powroznik, Prince George, Va., five bass, 14-3, $791
9th: Cavin Young, Prince George, Va., five bass, 14-2, $703
10th: Josh Wagy, Dewitt, Va., five bass, 13-15, $584
10th: Kenny Beale Jr., Blairs, Va., five bass, 13-15, $584
Complete results can be found here.
George Lambeth of Thomasville, North Carolina, caught a bass weighing 5 pounds, 12 ounces – the heaviest of the event in the Boater Division – which earned him the day’s Boater Big Bass award of $830.
Michael Davis of New London, North Carolina, won the Co-angler Division and $2,836 Saturday after bringing a five-bass limit totaling 16 pounds, 7 ounces to the weigh-in stage.
The top 10 co-anglers were:
1st: Michael Davis, New London, N.C., five bass, 16-7, $2,836
2nd: David Williams, Fredericksburg, Va., five bass, 13-13, $1,318
3rd: Donald Talbard, Ringgold, Va., four bass, 9-12, $879
4th: Arthur Clark, Cary, N.C., three bass, 9-2, $665
5th: Hank Cooke, Emporia, Va., three bass, 9-1, $527
6th: Stephen Kocell, Waxhaw, N.C., five bass, 8-14, $483
7th: Brian Transon, Sherrills Ford, N.C., four bass, 8-9, $439
8th: Lewis Brown, Asheboro, N.C., three bass, 8-7, $395
9th: Larry Freeman Jr., La Crosse, Va., three bass, 7-10, $352
10th: Chris Teague, Lincolnton, N.C., three bass, 7-8, $308
Complete results can be found here.
Hubert Roman of Lexington, North Carolina, caught the biggest bass among Co-angler Division anglers, a fish weighing 5 pounds, 7 ounces. The catch earned him the day’s Co-angler Big Bass award of $415.
The top 45 boaters and co-anglers in the region based on point standings, along with the five winners in each qualifying event, will be entered in the Oct. 12-14 BFL Regional Championship on the James River in Williamsburg, Virginia. Boaters will compete for a top award of a Ranger Z518C with a 200-horsepower Evinrude outboard and $20,000, while co-anglers will fish for a new Ranger Z518C with a 200-horsepower Evinrude outboard.