BYRDSTOWN, Tenn. – Boater Pat Eichmann of Nancy, Kentucky, caught five bass weighing 20 pounds, 6 ounces, to take top honors at the 2018 T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Mountain Division season-opener on Dale Hollow Lake. For his win, Eichmann earned $7,763.
Eichmann spent his day targeting bass in mid-lake channel swings. He said he had two productive areas – one in the back of a creek channel and the other at a main-lake creek channel wall.
“I started on flats in the morning but they weren’t there,” said Eichmann, who earned his second career win in BFL competition. “Those creek channel walls ended up being the deal. We had a full moon during the tournament and the water temperature was bouncing between 48 and 58 degrees, so I think that’s what got the big females moving in and staging.”
Eichmann said he caught three that he weighed in on a ½-ounce Zorro Baits Casting Booza Bug Jig with a green-pumpkin-colored Zoom Big Salty Chunk, and two on an umbrella rig with neon-blue L&M Bass Snacks Swim Shad trailers.
“When I got around submerged trees I’d use the jig, but if there weren’t any I switched to the umbrella rig,” said Eichmann “I was in 8 to 10 feet of water and had my limit by noon. It was a fun day out there.”
The top 10 boaters finished the tournament in:
1st: Pat Eichmann, Nancy, Ky., five bass, 20-6, $5,763 + $2,000 Ranger Cup Bonus
2nd: Michael Allen, Gainesboro, Tenn., five bass, 19-2, $2,381
3rd: Cole McCourt, Lawrenceburg, Ky., five bass, 18-14, $2,295
4th: Chris Gerrein, Villa Hills, Ky., five bass, 18-13, $1,311
5th: Adam Wagner, Cookeville, Tenn., five bass, 18-5, $1,053
6th: Freddy Adkins, E. Bernstadt, Ky., five bass, 16-5, $873
7th: Brent Anderson, Kingston Springs, Tenn., five bass, 16-4, $794
8th: Lynn Davis, Somerset, Ky., four bass, 15-15, $714
9th: Aaron Bidarian, Lexington, Ky., five bass, 15-13, $635
10th: Adam Militana, Saluda, N.C., five bass, 15-12, $556
Complete results can be found at FLWFishing.com
McCourt weighed a 6-pound, 4-ounce bass – the heaviest of the event in the Boater Division – and earned the day’s Boater Big Bass award of $710.
Brian Hutcheson of Russellville, Kentucky, won the Co-angler Division and $2,381 Saturday after catching a five-bass limit weighing 15 pounds even.
The top 10 co-anglers were:
1st: Brian Hutcheson, Russellville, Ky., five bass, 15-0, $2,381
2nd: Hagen Gray, Butler, Ky., four bass, 14-2, $1,191
3rd: Gene Nornhold Jr., Mount Sterling, Ky., five bass, 11-14, $791
4th: David Mouser, Elizabethtown, Ky., five bass, 11-8, $556
5th: Kenny Strunk, Bronston, Ky., five bass, 11-5, $476
6th: Les Reeves, Rockholds, Ky., three bass, 10-15, $792
7th: Chase Sansom, Salt Rock, W. Va., five bass, 9-13, $377
7th: Matthew Bouldin, Smithville, Tenn., three bass, 9-13, $377
9th: Beavin Cundiff Jr., Fairdale, Ky., four bass, 9-4, $318
10th: J.P. Sims, Cookeville, Tenn., four bass, 9-3, $278
Reeves caught the largest bass in the Co-angler Division weighing in at 5-pounds, 1-ounce.. The catch earned him the day’s Co-angler Big Bass award of $355.
The T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Mountain Division event on Dale Hollow Lake was hosted by Star Point Resort.
The top 45 boaters and co-anglers in the region based on point standings, along with the five winners in each qualifying event, will be entered in the Oct. 25-27 BFL Regional Championship on Lake Chickamauga in Dayton, Tennessee. Boaters will compete for a top award of a Ranger Z518C with a 200-horsepower Evinrude outboard and $20,000, while co-anglers will fish for a new Ranger Z518C with a 200-horsepower Evinrude outboard.
The 2018 BFL is a 24-division circuit devoted to weekend anglers, with 128 tournaments throughout the season, five qualifying events in each division. The top 45 boaters and co-anglers from each division, along with the five winners of the qualifying events, will advance to one of six regional tournaments where they are competing to finish in the top six, which then qualifies them for one of the longest-running championships in all of competitive bass fishing – the BFL All-American. The 2018 BFL All-American will be held May 31-June 2 at Cross Lake in Shreveport, Louisiana, and is hosted by the Shreveport-Bossier Sports Commission. Top performers in the BFL can move up to the Costa FLW Series or even the FLW Tour.
For complete details and updated information visit FLWFishing.com. For regular updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League on FLW’s social media outlets at Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Snapchat.
FLW is the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, providing anglers of all skill levels the opportunity to compete for millions in prize money in 2018 across five tournament circuits. Headquartered in Benton, Kentucky, with offices in Minneapolis, FLW and their partners conduct 286 bass-fishing tournaments annually around the world, including the United States, Canada, China, Italy, South Korea, Mexico, Portugal, South Africa and Spain. FLW tournament fishing can be seen on the Emmy-nominated “FLW" television show, broadcast to more than 564 million households worldwide, while FLW Bass Fishing magazine delivers cutting-edge tips from top pros. For more information visit FLWFishing.com and follow FLW at Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Snapchat.
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