BURNSIDE, Ky. – The Murray State University duo of Hunter McKinley of Murray, Kentucky, and Brendan Bingham of Louisville, Kentucky, won the YETI FLW College Fishing event on Lake Cumberland presented by Costa Friday with a five-bass limit weighing 19 pounds, 8 ounces. The victory earned the Racer’s bass club $2,400 and a slot in the 2020 FLW College Fishing National Championship.
The duo said that they caught a combined mix of largemouth and smallmouth – 20 to 30 throughout the day – bringing a five-bass limit to the scale consisting of two smallmouth and three largemouth. They credited shad-colored Keitech swimbaits as the key bait for their smallmouth and flipping a green-pumpkin with blue flake and orange-colored Bruiser Baits Crazy Craw for their largemouth.
“It’s nice to be ending my College Fishing career with a win,” said McKinley, a senior graduating in May with a degree in advertising. “We were planning on targeting largemouth, but we started out on smallmouth in the morning hoping for a bonus big bite and we got one. We were fishing on the river near Jamestown until 9:30 or 10 (a.m.) then we switched to flipping for largemouth. We caught 10 to 15 keepers flipping the Crazy Craw – including another nice smallmouth.”
“It was an awesome day – there was at least two or three times that we were both hooked up, back-to-back,” said Bingham, a sophomore majoring in Occupational Safety and Health Administration. “We were mainly targeting laydowns on transition banks. We stayed in one spot – Pumpkin Creek, up by the Jamestown Marina – for most of the day. Our river smallmouth spot was near there as well.
“I think our key for the day was picking up the flipping sticks when the sun came out,” McKinley went on to say. “We made the right decision and it was great to get the win on a really fun day of fishing.”
The top 10 teams that advanced to the 2020 College Fishing National Championship are:
1st: Murray State University – Hunter McKinley, Murray, Ky., and Brendan Bingham, Louisville, Ky., five bass, 19-8, $2,400
2nd: Campbellsville University – Nick Ratliff, Vine Grove, Ky., and Bradley Dunagan, Monticello, Ky., five bass, 19-7, $1,250
3rd: Eastern Kentucky University – Blake Riley, Henderson, Ky., and Corey Elliott, London, Ky., five bass, 17-13, $500
4th: McKendree University – Nathan Doty, Decatur, Ill., and Jacob Louis, Pinckneyville, Ill., five bass, 17-3, $500
5th: Eastern Kentucky University – Kyler Petrey, Richmond, Ky., and Jeffrey Ruber, Dry Ridge, Ky., five bass, 17-1, $500
6th: University of Wisconsin-La Crosse – Gage Griffin, Lake Forest, Ill., and Colby Wolff, Shiwano, Wis., five bass, 16-1
7th: Southern Illinois University – Mason Bishop, Tunnel Hill, Ill., and Kyle Kreger, Du Bois, Ill., five bass, 15-9
8th: Campbellsville University – Adam Carman, Berea, Ky., and Hunter Grant Adams, Campbellsville, Ky., five bass, 14-13
9th: Bellarmine University – Andrew Kuebler, Louisville, Ky., and Zack Ruhland, Fort Mitchell, Ky., five bass, 14-5
10th: Georgetown College – Hunter Osborne, Irvine, Ky., and Samuel Clark, Danville, Ky., five bass, 14-1
Complete results for the entire field can be found at FLWFishing.com.
The YETI FLW College Fishing event on Lake Cumberland presented by Costa was hosted by the Burnside Tourism Commission. It was the first of three regular-season qualifying tournaments for Central Conference anglers. The next event for FLW College Fishing anglers will be the Northern Conference opener, April 26 at Smith Mountain Lake in Huddleston, Virginia.
YETI FLW College Fishing teams compete in three regular-season qualifying tournaments in one of five conferences – Central, Northern, Southern, Southeastern and Western. All participants must be registered, full-time students at a college, university or community college and members of a college fishing club that is recognized by their school. The top 10 teams from each division’s three regular-season tournaments and the top 20 teams from the annual FLW College Fishing Open will advance to the 2020 FLW College Fishing National Championship. Additional teams will qualify for the National Championship if the field size in regular-season events exceeds 100 boats. The Potomac River and Marbury, Maryland, will play host to the 2019 FLW College Fishing National Championship, June 4-6, 2019.
For complete details and updated information visit FLWFishing.com. For regular updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow YETI FLW College Fishing on FLW’s social media outlets at Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.
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 2019 across five tournament circuits. Headquartered in Benton, Kentucky, with offices in Minneapolis, FLW and their partners conduct more than 290 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 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 and YouTube.
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