MARBURY, Md. – The 2004 Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League Northeast Division season kicked off Saturday on the Potomac River near Marbury, and Todd Schaaf of Hume, Va., claimed the win thanks to a five-bass catch weighing 16 pounds, 9 ounces. He bested 199 Boater Division competitors to earn $5,011 and 200 points.
Schaaf caught his tournament-winning bass using a black and blue jig in the upper river. The win is Schaaf’s second career BFL victory, and both wins came on the Potomac River.
Rounding out the top five boaters are Gerald Beck of Lexington, N.C. (five bass, 15 pounds, 14 ounces, $2,506); Randy Dustin of Falconer, N.Y. (five bass, 14 pounds, 15 ounces, $1,704); Jamie Hartman of Poland, N.Y. (five bass, 14 pounds, 12 ounces, $1,303); and Ken Golub of Pittsford, N.Y. (five bass, 14 pounds, 2 ounces, $1,102).
Golub earned a $500 bonus from Ranger Boats as the highest-finishing participant in the Ranger Cup incentive program. Tim Creighton of Buffalo, N.Y., claimed Boater Division big-bass honors and $995 thanks to a 5-pound bass.
Jodey Bruce of Sunbury, Pa., earned $2,505 as the Co-angler Division winner thanks to a four-bass catch that weighed 11 pounds, 4 ounces. He edged past 199 Co-angler Division competitors thanks to a white spinnerbait.
Rounding out the top five co-anglers are Jim Gallagher of Southampton, Pa. (four bass, 10 pounds, 14 ounces, $1,253); Marty Riegal of Cortland, N.Y. (four bass, 10 pounds, 13 ounces, $852); Mark Mongan of Hagerstown (five bass, 9 pounds, 11 ounces, $651); and Andy Miller of Burlington, N.J. (three bass, 9 pounds, 9 ounces, $551).
John Ehrhardt of Torrington, Conn., earned $498 as the Co-angler Division big-bass winner with a 5-pound, 8-ounce bass that he caught on a Brush Hog.
The Northeast Division’s next stop will be July 10 on Lake Champlain in Ticonderoga, N.Y. Each BFL division features four one-day events followed by a two-day Super Tournament to round out the regular season. The top 30 Northeast Division boaters and co-anglers based on year-end points standings will advance to the Kerr Lake regional near Henderson, N.C., Oct. 5-9, where they will compete against Buckeye, Carolina and Savannah River division anglers for a slot in the 2005 All-American. The winning boater at the All-American receives $100,000 cash, making it one of the most lucrative and prestigious championship events in bass fishing.
Every angler who receives weight credit in a tournament earns points, with 200 points going to the winner, 199 for second, 198 for third, and so on except for Super Tournaments, which award 300 points to the winner, 299 for second, 298 for third, and so on. These points determine angler standings. The Northeast Division boater who amasses the most points at the end of the regular season will earn $1,000 as the Yamaha “Be the Best” points leader, and the co-angler earning the most points will earn $500 as the Yamaha “Be the Best” points leader in the Co-angler Division.
The $6.3 million Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League features 24 divisions nationwide. In BFL competition, boaters and co-anglers are randomly paired, with boaters supplying the boat and fishing against other boaters and co-anglers fishing from the back deck against other co-anglers. For more information or to enter a tournament, call (270) 252-1000 or click here.
Wal-Mart and many of America’s most respected companies support FLW Outdoors and its six tournament trails. Wal-Mart has been the title sponsor of FLW Outdoors since 1997. For a complete list of FLW Outdoors sponsors and for more information about the premier products and services they offer, please visit FLWOutdoors.com’s sponsor page.