Boater Trent Suratt of Lawrenceburg, Tennessee, brought five bass to the weigh-in stage Saturday totaling 20 pounds, 3 ounces, to earn the win and $4,394 at the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Mississippi Division tournament on Pickwick Lake.
“I was on the upper end of the lake, just below Wilson Dam, targeting chunk rock in 4 to 7 feet of water where smallmouth and largemouth like to get in and bed,” says Suratt, who notched his first career win in FLW competition. “I stayed in one area all day – it was pretty much a flat on the main river that was probably 100 by 100 yards in size.
“I caught five keepers – three smallmouth and two largemouth,” continues Suratt. “I had two fish at 11 [a.m.] and three more between 11 and 1 [p.m.]. It was a midday bite – that’s how it’s been the last couple of weeks. They haven’t come up to feed to feed until 11 or noon.”
Suratt says he caught his fish on a shaky head with a 5-inch, green-pumpkin-colored YUM Dinger. He used 10-pound-test Yo-Zuri braided line with an 8-pound-test Sunline Super FC Sniper fluorocarbon leader and a 7-foot, 3-inch Fitzgerald Stunner HD medium-heavy spinning rod.
The top 10 boaters:
1st: Trent Suratt, Lawrenceburg, Tenn., five bass, 20-3, $4,394
2nd: Don Perkins, Guntersville, Ala., five bass, 19-12, $2,397
3rd: Taurian Parks, Yazoo City, Miss., five bass, 19-7, $1,564
4th: Todd Rackley, Sheffield, Ala., five bass, 19-4, $1,025
5th: Blake Daugherty, Batesville, Miss., five bass, 18-9, $879
6th: Justin Atkins, Florence, Ala., four bass, 18-2, $1,985
7th: Mitch Mitchell, Muscle Shoals, Ala., five bass, 18-1, $695
7th: Jade Keeton, Florence, Ala., five bass, 18-1, $695
9th: Jeff Suratt, Leoma, Tenn., five bass, 17-15, $736
10th: Heath Gilmore, Meridian, Miss., five bass, 17-11, $513
Complete results can be found at FLWFishing.com.
Atkins caught a 9-pound, 2-ouncer – the heaviest of the event in the Boater Division – and earned the day’s Boater Big Bass award of $630.
Sawyer wins co-angler title
Thomas Sawyer of Byhalia, Mississippi, won the Co-angler Division and $2,512 Saturday after catching five bass weighing 19 pounds, 9 ounces.
The top 10 co-anglers:
1st: Thomas Sawyer, Byhalia, Miss., five bass, 19-9, $2,512
2nd: John Swords, Collierville, Tenn., five bass, 15-2, $1,098
3rd: Kevin Crutcher, Collierville, Tenn., four bass, 13-11, $733
4th: George Welch, Hernando, Miss., five bass, 12-11, $513
5th: Richard Baker, Jackson, Tenn., five bass, 12-10, $439
6th: Larry Stewart Jr., Clinton, Miss., four bass, 11-12, $603
7th: Zach Smith, Ripley, Miss., three bass, 10-10, $366
8th: Jimmy Tisdale, Ellisville, Miss., four bass, 10-2, $330
9th: Ryan LeCompte, Picayune, Miss., four bass, 9-10, $343
10th: Don White, Columbus, Miss., three bass, 9-6, $406
Sawyer also caught the largest bass in the Co-angler Division, a fish weighing in at 6 pounds, 5 ounces. The catch earned him the day’s Co-angler Big Bass award of $315.
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. 17-19 BFL Regional Championship on Lake Guntersville in Guntersville, Alabama, presented by Mercury. Boaters will compete for a top award of a Ranger Z518L with a 200-horsepower outboard and $20,000, while co-anglers will fish for a new Ranger Z518L with a 200-horsepower outboard.