APPLING, Ga. – Boater Deron Johnson of Anderson, S.C., won the Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League Savannah River Division tournament on Clarks Hill Saturday with a five-bass catch weighing 17 pounds, 6 ounces. The victory earned Johnson $4,390 and placed him one step closer to qualifying for the Lake Seminole Regional Championship in Bainbridge, Ga., Oct. 25-27, where he could ultimately win a new 519VX Ranger boat and a Chevy truck.
Rounding out the top five boaters are Tanner Brown of Starr, S.C., (five bass, 16-12, $2,582); Ronnie Wald of Seneca, S.C., (five bass, 16-6, $1,722); Kip Ashmore of Evans, Ga., (five bass, 16-1, $1,205) and Randy Childers of Anderson, S.C., (five bass, 14-2, $990).
Hans Cansler of Aiken, S.C., took home the Boater Division Snickers Big Bass award, earning $805 for a 6-pound, 11-ounce bass.
David Carmichael of Lincolnton, Ga., earned $2,577 as the co-angler winner Saturday thanks to three bass weighing 12 pounds, 9 ounces.
Rounding out the top five co-anglers are James Wood of Pickens, S.C., (five bass, 10-13, $1,288); Jake Carter of Westminster, S.C., (five bass, 10-2, $858); Mike Thrift of Easley, S.C., (four bass, 9-14, $601) and Ronald Bryant of Batesburg, S.C., (five bass, 9-11, $515).
Carmichael earned $397 as the co-angler Big Bass winner after catching a 6-pound, 12-ounce bass.
The Savannah River Division’s next event will be April 28 on Lake Hartwell in Clemson, S.C., followed by a tournament June 16 on Lake Russell in Elberton, Ga. The final event of the regular season will be a two-day Super Tournament held Sept. 29-30 on Clarks Hill in Thomson, Ga.
Following the end of regular-season competition, the top 40 boaters and 40 co-anglers based on year-end points standings in the division will advance to the no-entry-fee Lake Seminole Regional Championship where they will compete against top qualifiers from three other BFL divisions. At the Regional Championship boaters will fish for a new Ranger boat and Chevy truck and co-anglers will fish for a new Ranger boat. The top six boaters and top six co-anglers at the Regional Championship will also advance to the 2008 All-American presented by Chevy. With a total purse of $1 million, a potential $140,000 cash prize going to the winning boater and as much as $70,000 going to the winning co-angler, the All-American is one of the most prestigious and lucrative events in bass fishing. The winning boater and winning co-angler at the All-American also advance to the no-entry-fee $2 million 2008 Forrest Wood Cup. This event, featuring a top award of $1 million, is the sport’s biggest championship.
The $8.8 million Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League features 28 divisions nationwide. In BFL competition, boaters and co-anglers are randomly paired. Boaters supply the boat and fish from the front deck against other boaters while co-anglers compete from the back deck against other co-anglers.
Named after the legendary founder of Ranger Boats, Forrest L. Wood, FLW Outdoors administers the Wal-Mart FLW Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Series, Stren Series, Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League, Wal-Mart Texas Tournament Trail presented by Abu Garcia, Ranger Owners Tournament Championship Series, Wal-Mart FLW Walleye Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Walleye League, Wal-Mart FLW Kingfish Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Kingfish Series, Wal-Mart FLW Redfish Series and Wal-Mart FLW Striper Series. These circuits will offer combined purses of nearly $43 million through 241 events in 2007.
Wal-Mart and many of America’s largest and most respected companies support FLW Outdoors and its tournament trails. Wal-Mart signed on as an FLW Outdoors sponsor in 1997 and today is the world’s leading supporter of tournament fishing. For more information about Wal-Mart, visit Wal-Mart.com.
For more information about FLW Outdoors and its tournaments, browse FLWOutdoors.com or call (270) 252-1000.