FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: BROOKELAND, TEXAS – The Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit at Sam Rayburn Reservoir has set the stage for another dramatic finale on Sunday – the top 10 is stacked with a former FLW Cup champion, a Phoenix Bass Fishing League (BFL) All-American Champion and two semi-local anglers with a wealth of experience on Sam Rayburn – all in striking distance to win the tournament, and the top prize of $135,000.
Berkley pro John Cox of DeBary, Florida, who has led the tournament the entire way, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 13 pounds, 3 ounces to retain his lead with a three-day total of 53-6.
Pro Corey Neece of Bristol, Tennessee, (52-10), who started the day in seventh place, vaulted into second after bringing in the largest limit of the day Saturday weighing 20-7. Darold Gleason of Many, Louisiana, (50-1), Alabama’s Sam George (46-3) and Tommy Dickerson of Orange, Texas, (45-8) round out the top five.
With just a 12-ounce cushion heading into the final day, Cox is ready to see how it all shakes out on Championship Sunday.
“I am honestly so thrilled to have caught 13 pounds today,” said Cox, who has four previous wins in FLW pro competition. “Nothing felt right. I pulled up to my magic spot and everything seemed okay – the wind was blowing a little bit from a different direction, but no big deal. I threw out there and caught a 12-incher and that was it. I tried to stay there and wait, but it just wasn’t happening.
“I ended up just running around until I saw something that looked good, then I’d stop and fish. I probably stopped 100 times, and about every 10th stop I’d catch something.”
Cox had caught his fish earlier this week on a Berkley Frittside crankbait, but when his main area fizzled he was forced to switch to a Z-Man ChatterBait to cover more water.
“I couldn’t really throw the crankbait today, because I was moving too fast,” Cox said. “I had the trolling motor on 100 and was always looking for my next cast.
“Nothing came on the same thing,” he continued. “One came off of an isolated stick. One came off of a laydown. One came on a rocky point. One came off of a drain in the back of a pocket. I got so lucky to catch what I did.”
The upside for Cox after Day Three was that he survived, and still has the lead going into the final day.
“I was looking at my past results and it really seemed like I bombed on a lot of Day Threes last year,” Cox went on to say. “I was thinking that I blew it again today and was going to drop to fifth or sixth and really have to get lucky and catch a big fish tomorrow. I still think I’ll need some big fish – Neece caught 20 (pounds) today and he’s on something magical – but I’m hoping my little area turns back on, and if it doesn’t we’ll scramble again and see what happens.”
The top 10 pros advancing to the final day of competition Sunday on Sam Rayburn Reservoir are:
1st: John Cox of DeBary, Fla., 15 bass, 53-6
2nd: Corey Neece of Bristol, Tenn., 10 bass, 52-10
3rd: Darold Gleason of Many, La., 15 bass, 50-1
4th: Sam George of Athens, Ala., 15 bass, 46-3
5th: Tommy Dickerson of Orange, Texas, 15 bass, 45-8
6th: Jonathan Canada of Helena, Ala., 15 bass, 45-8
7th: Kerry Milner of Bono, Ark., 15 bass, 45-2
8th: Scott Dobson of Clarkston, Mich., 15 bass, 43-8
9th: Ron Nelson of Berrien Springs, Mich., 15 bass, 43-7
10th: Alex Davis of Albertville, Ala., 15 bass, 43-4
Finishing in 11th through 30th are
11th: Bill McDonald of Greenwood, Ind., 15 bass, 42-12, $11,000
12th: Jake Ormond of Sterlington, La., 15 bass, 42-9, $11,000
13th: Joshua Weaver of Macon, Ga., 15 bass, 42-4, $11,000
14th: Mitch Crane of Columbus, Miss., 15 bass, 42-0, $11,000
15th: Bradford Beavers of Summerville, S.C., 15 bass, 41-15, $11,000
16th: Hunter Freeman of Monroe, La., 12 bass, 41-12, $11,000
17th: Mike Surman of Boca Raton, Fla., 15 bass, 41-5, $11,000
18th: Miles Burghoff of Soddy Daisy, Tenn., 15 bass, 41-3, $11,000
19th: Grae Buck of Harleysville, Pa., 15 bass, 41-2, $11,500
20th: Matt Becker of Finleyville, Pa., 15 bass, 40-3, $11,000
21st: Greg Bohannan of Bentonville, Ark., 13 bass, 38-7, $10,500
22nd: Jeff Dobson of Bartlesville, Okla., 15 bass, 37-12, $10,500
23rd: Chris McCall of Palmer, Texas, 14 bass, 37-9, $10,500
24th: Tim Frederick of Leesburg, Fla., 13 bass, 37-0, $10,500
25th: Miles Howe of San Juan Capistrano, Calif., 13 bass, 36-12, $10,500
26th: Tyler Stewart of West Monroe, La., 15 bass, 35-15, $10,500
27th: Mark Fisher of Wauconda, Ill., 15 bass, 35-10, $10,500
28th: Spencer Shuffield of Hot Springs, Ark., 15 bass, 34-0, $10,500
29th: Scott Ashmore of Broken Arrow, Okla., 13 bass, 32-14, $10,500
30th: Joey Cifuentes of Clinton, Ark., 13 bass, 32-3, $10,500
Full results for the entire field can be found at FLWFishing.com.
Overall there were 138 bass weighing 354 pounds, 14 ounces, caught by pros Saturday. Of the final 30 pros, 23 of them were able to bring a five-bass limit to the scale.
In Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit competition, the full field of 154 pro anglers competed in the two-day opening round on Thursday and Friday. The top 30 pros based on their two-day accumulated weight advanced to Saturday. Now, only the top 10 pros continue competition Sunday, with the winner determined by the heaviest accumulated weight from the four days of competition.
The Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit at Sam Rayburn Reservoir is hosted by the Jasper County Development District.
The final 10 anglers will take off at 7:30 a.m. CST Sunday from the Umphrey Family Pavilion, located at 5438 Sam Rayburn Parkway, in Brookeland. Sunday’s championship weigh-in will be held at the pavilion, beginning at 4 p.m.
Television coverage of the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit at Sam Rayburn Reservoir will premiere in 2020. The 2020 Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit will have 156 two-hour airings on network television, including 26 consecutive weeks of Friday night primetime airing on Outdoor Channel and 130 airings on Sportsman Channel for a total of 312 hours of Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit programming.
The popular FLW Live on-the-water broadcast will air Sunday, featuring live action from the boats of the tournament’s top pros each day. Host Travis Moran is joined by former FLW pro Todd Hollowell to break down the extended action each day from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. The on-the-water broadcast will be live streamed on FLWFishing.com, the FLW YouTube channel and the FLW Facebook page.
For complete details and updated information visit FLWFishing.com. For regular updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit 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 across five tournament circuits. Headquartered in Benton, Kentucky, FLW and its partners conduct more than 290 bass-fishing tournaments annually around the world, including the United States, Canada, China, Italy, South Korea, Mexico, Namibia, Portugal, South Africa, Spain, and Zimbabwe.
FLW tournament fishing can be seen on the Emmy-nominated “FLW” television show while Bass Fishing magazine delivers cutting-edge tips from top pros. Acquired by Major League Fishing in late 2019, FLW is expanding its programming in 2020 to the Outdoor Channel and the Sportsman Channel as well as on-demand at MyOutdoorTV (MOTV).
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