WHITEHALL, N.Y. – George Yund of Albany, N.Y., topped 150 Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League competitors Saturday on Lake Champlain with five bass weighing 18 pounds, 7 ounces. The catch earned him $4,047 and 200 points in the Boater Division.
Yund caught his limit using a Snag Proof Tournament Frog in the chestnut trees and following it up with a rattle back jig. The catch topped second-place boater Ted Oman of Bloomsburg, Pa., by 10 ounces. Oman finished the one-day tournament with a five-bass catch weighing 17 pounds, 13 ounces worth $2,023. Oman also received a $500 bonus from Ranger Boats as the highest-finishing participant in the Ranger Cup incentive program.
James Fleming of Lockport, N.Y. (five bass, 17 pounds, 8 ounces, $1,214); Kevin Bishop of Hilton, N.Y. (five bass, 16 pounds, 8 ounces, $971); and Jack Ackerman of Ulster, Pa., (five bass, 16 pounds, 5 ounces, $890) rounded out the top five boaters.
Tim Henrich of Green Bay, Wis., earned boater big-bass honors and $750 with a 5-pound, 8-ounce bass. He finished in 111th place overall.
Ed Kerkhoff of McConnellsburg, Pa., claimed first place and $2,023 in the 150-competitor Co-angler Division with five bass weighing 17 pounds, 4 ounces. He surpassed second-place co-angler Warren Barrett of Belchertown, Mass., by 1 pound, 9 ounces thanks to a Senko lure that he was using in about 3 feet of water. Barrett finished with a five-bass catch weighing 15 pounds, 11 ounces worth $1,012.
Leonce Bedard of Sterling, Conn. (five bass, 15 pounds, $607); Chad Shutty of Barnesboro, Pa. (five bass, 14 pounds, $486); and Dean Puderbaugh of Unityville, Pa., (five bass, 11 pounds, 14 ounces, $445) rounded out the top five co-anglers.
Co-angler Daniel Hornbaker of Wachung, N.J., earned big-bass honors and $375 in his division with a 5-pound, 11-ounce bass. He finished 14th with a four-bass catch weighing 10 pounds, 7 ounces.
The BFL will visit Cayuga Lake Sept. 14-15 for the Northeast Division’s final regular-season event, a two-day Super Tournament. The boater with the most points after the Super Tournament 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 Northeast Division boaters and co-anglers will advance to regional competition Oct. 15-19 on Lake Gaston near Littleton, N.C., where they will go up against top competitors from the Buckeye, Mountain and Savannah River 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.
Sponsors of the 2002 Wal-Mart BFL are Wal-Mart, ALPO Pet Foods, BC Powder, BFGoodrich Tires, Castrol, Chevy Trucks, Conseco, Energizer, EverStart Batteries, Evinrude, Faded Glory, Frito-Lay, FujiFilm, GARMIN, Kellogg’s, Land O’Lakes, Minn Kota, Newell Rubbermaid, Pepsi, Poulan, Ranger Boats, Shop-Vac, Snickers, Stanley Works, Stren, U.S. Bank, Weed Eater and Yamaha Outboards.