GROVE, Okla. – Mike Tyner of Stillwater, Okla., topped 191 Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League competitors Saturday on Grand Lake with five bass weighing 19 pounds, 14 ounces. The catch earned him $4,848 and 200 points in the Boater Division.
Tyner, who also earned a $1,000 bonus from Ranger Boats as the highest finishing participant in the Ranger Cup incentive program, caught his limit on a white spinner bait with gold blades while fishing rock banks in 2 to 4 feet of water. The catch topped second-place boater Terry Butcher of Talala, Okla., by 2 pounds, 11 ounces. Butcher finished the one-day tournament with a five-bass catch weighing 17 pounds, 3 ounces worth $2,424.
Chester Gibbs of Wagoner, Okla. (five bass, 16 pounds, 11 ounces, $1,454); Lee Sanders of Stillwater, Okla. (four bass, 13 pounds, $1,164); and Kirk Washburn of Harrah, Okla., (five bass, 12 pounds, 15 ounces, $1,067) rounded out the top five boaters.
Kirk Smith of Edmond, Okla., earned boater big bass honors and $955 with a 6-pound, 8-ounce bass that he caught on a black and blue jig while fishing a rock bank in 2 to 4 feet of water. He finished in 29th place overall with two bass weighing 8 pounds, 6 ounces.
Ron Grider of Edmond, Okla., claimed first place and $2,411 in the 191-competitor Co-angler Division with five bass weighing 14 pounds, 5 ounces. He surpassed second-place co-angler Eric Kromhout of Locust Grove, Okla., by 2 pounds, 8 ounces. Kromhout finished with a five-bass catch weighing 11 pounds, 13 ounces worth $1,206.
Bradley Morrison of Rudy, Ark. (five bass, 11 pounds, 5 ounces, $723); Clifford Blalock of Choctaw, Okla. (three bass, 9 pounds, 10 ounces, $579); and Trenton Whitehouse of Bristow, Okla., (four bass, 9 pounds, 8 ounces, $530) rounded out the top five co-anglers.
Co-angler Robbie Black of Francis, Okla., earned big bass honors and $475 in his division with a 5-pound, 7-ounce bass. He finished 18th thanks to the one bass.
Overall, 12 five-bass limits were caught during the tournament.
The Wal-Mart BFL will visit Lake Eufaula May 11 for the third of five Okie Division events. The boater with the most points after the division’s season finale, a two-day Super Tournament Sept. 7-8 on Keystone Lake, will be declared the Yamaha “Be the Best” Points Leader and awarded $1,000. The co-angler amassing the most points by the end of the season will receive $500.
The top 30 Okie Division boaters and co-anglers will advance to regional competition Oct. 29-Nov. 2 on Lake Hamilton near Hot Springs, Ark., where they will go up against top competitors from the Louisiana, Ozark and Gulf Coast divisions for a shot at qualifying for the Wal-Mart BFL All-American – one of the most lucrative post-season tournaments in competitive angling.
2002 BFL awards could reach $7 million based on full fields.