MOUNT IDA, Ark. – Spencer Shuffield of Bismarck, Ark., weighed a five-bass limit totaling 19 pounds, 12 ounces Saturday to win the Walmart Bass Fishing League Arkie Division event on Lake Ouachita. For his victory, Shuffield earned $6,155.
“I caught a lot of fish today,” said Shuffield. “I went up to Ouachita for a couple of days last week and was able to get onto a good pattern. I’ve spent many hours working with my Lowrance HDS-8 Fishfinder, learning exactly how it works and how to use it. It has been key for me and I wouldn’t have been able to catch a lot of these fish without it. I’ve gotten onto these fish over some deep standing timber. It took me a few hours, but I was able to find them.
“I was using a Swimming Frenzy rig, with four wires each with a blade on it with a 1/2-ounce weighted head,” Shuffield continued. “I’ve got it to where it falls exactly 2 feet per second, so I’m able to just drop it down to the tree-line and I’m finding the suspended fish. The key was finding the groups of fish and getting them active. Once you get them active, they really got going. I hit seven or eight spots on the day where I would pull up and catch five or six bass in a row, with several doubles. I never really caught any big ones; most of them were between 21/2 to 3 pounds. But I caught a lot of fish. I got at least 60 fish, if not more.”
Shuffield not only won the event, he even managed to beat his father, the well-known EverStart pro Ron Shuffield, who finished in third place. The father and son are part of a close-knit fishing family, and the two also compete at the sport’s highest level, the FLW Tour.
Rounding out the top 10 pros:
2nd: Danny Gwinn, Mount Ida, Ark., five bass, 19-9, $2,078
3rd: EverStart pro Ron Shuffield, Bismarck, Ark., five bass, 18-5, $1,383
4th: Brandon Rhoden, Mountain Pine, Ark., five bass, 18-0, $970
5th: Huey Applegate, Jessieville, Ark., five bass, 16-9, $831
6th: Dennis Bean, Hot Springs, Ark., five bass, 15-11, $762
7th: Brian Liles, Texarkana, Ark., five bass, 15-5, $693
8th: Timothy Preator, Little Rock, Ark., five bass, 14-0, $623
9th: Mark McDonnel, Benton, Ark., five bass, 13-14, $554
10th: Adam Wright, Benton, Ark., five bass, 13-1, $485
For complete results, click here.
Thompson nets co-angler title
Bruce Thompson of Little Rock, Ark., weighed a five-bass limit totaling 13 pounds, 7 ounces Saturday to win $2,078 in the co-angler division.
Rounding out the top 10 co-anglers:
2nd: Aaron Loftin, Alexander, Ark., five bass, 13-4, $1,039
3rd: Johnny Manning, Arkadelphia, Ark., five bass, 11-12, $691
4th: Tommy Rigsby, Lonsdale, Ark., five bass, 11-7, $485
5th: Robert Percy, Hot Springs National Park, Ark., five bass, 10-10, $416
6th: Kevin Holmes, Russelville, Ark., four bass, 10-4, $381
7th: Zach Robertson, Hot Springs, Ark., five bass, 9-14, $346
8th: Chris Belt, Van Buren, Ark., four bass, 9-11, $312
9th: Juan Barrientos, Clarksville, Ark., five bass, 8-15, $277
10th: Skip (Clifton) Grise, Hot Springs, Ark., three bass, 8-9, $242
The next BFL Arkie Division tournament is scheduled for April 14 on DeGray Lake in Arkadelphia, Ark. After the fifth Arkie Division tournament is complete, the top 40 boaters and 40 co-anglers based on point standings will qualify for the Oct. 18-20 Regional Championship on the Red River in Natchitoches, La. Boaters will compete for a top award of a Ranger Z518 with a 200-horsepower Evinrude or Mercury outboard and a Chevy Silverado, while co-anglers will fish for a new Ranger Z518 with a 200-horsepower Evinrude or Mercury outboard.
The BFL is a 24-division circuit devoted to weekend anglers, with 120 tournaments throughout the season, five in each division. The top 40 boaters and co-anglers from each division qualify for a regional tournament and compete to finish in the top six, which then qualifies them for one of the longest-running championships in all of competitive bass fishing – the Walmart BFL All-American presented by Chevy. The 2012 BFL All-American is being held May 17 – 19 on the Potomac River in National Harbor, Md. Top winners in the BFL can move up to the EverStart Series or even the Walmart FLW Tour.
FLW is the industry’s premier tournament-fishing organization, providing unparalleled fishing resources and entertainment to our sponsors, fans and host communities. FLW is offering anglers of all skill levels the opportunity to compete for millions in prize money nationwide in 2012 over the course of 191 tournaments across five tournament circuits, each providing an avenue to the sport’s richest payday and most coveted championship trophy – the Forrest Wood Cup. FLW is committed to providing a lifestyle experience that is the “Best in Fishing, On and Off the Water,” through a variety of platforms including tournaments, outdoor expos and the world’s richest fantasy sports game – FLW Fantasy Fishing. For more information about FLW and FLW Fantasy Fishing, visit FLWOutdoors.com or FantasyFishing.com and look for FLW on Twitter and Facebook.