Georgia’s Marks wins Phoenix Bass Fishing League Regional tournament on Lake Eufaula - Major League Fishing
Georgia’s Marks wins Phoenix Bass Fishing League Regional tournament on Lake Eufaula
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Georgia’s Marks wins Phoenix Bass Fishing League Regional tournament on Lake Eufaula

Strike King co-angler victory goes to Georgia’s Cowart
Image for Georgia’s Marks wins Phoenix Bass Fishing League Regional tournament on Lake Eufaula
Boater Paul Marks of Cumming, Georgia, and Strike-King co-angler Tommy Cowart of Danielsville, Georgia.
October 16, 2023 • MLF • Press Releases

EUFAULA, Ala. – Boater Paul Marks of Cumming, Georgia, brought a three-day total of 15 bass to the scale weighing 54 pounds, 11 ounces, to win the Phoenix Bass Fishing League Presented by T-H Marine regional event on Lake Eufaula in Eufaula, Alabama. For his victory, Marks earned $67,992, including a new Phoenix 819 Pro bass boat with a 200-horsepower Mercury outboard and $10,000, along with the lucrative $7,000 Phoenix MLF contingency bonus. Marks also received automatic entry into the 2024 Phoenix Bass Fishing League All-American Championship, May 29-31, at Cherokee Lake in Jefferson County, Tennessee.

Marks said he roamed from Lakepoint State Park to the dam searching for bass during the event, and his first two days produced solid weights. However, he lost a 5-pounder at the end of Day 1 on Thursday and a 6-pounder late on Friday which would have boosted his weight dramatically.

“Then Saturday was tough for me,” said Marks, who noted he had fished Lake Eufaula only once prior to the regional event. “I had to really beat on them to catch what I caught.”

Marks said he spent most of his time dragging a Picasso Fantasy Football Jig with a Zoom Z Craw trailer, as well as a Texas-rigged worm for his bass. He said he targeted points, ledges, and brush in 8 to 25 feet of water that were holding fish.

“At the end of the day on Friday I thought I had a pretty good chance for a win,” Marks said. “I really wrecked them, and I thought I might catch 20 pounds on Saturday.

“I just don’t have words to describe this experience,” Marks said. “It’s very surreal.”

The top six boaters that qualified for the 2024 Phoenix Bass Fishing League All-American were:

  • 1st:          Paul Marks, Cumming, Ga., 15 bass, 54-11, $67,992 (includes $7,000 Phoenix MFL Contingency Bonus)
  • 2nd:        Aaron Yavorsky, Palm Harbor, Fla., 15 bass, 50-9, $10,992
  • 3rd:        Bradley Enfinger, Donalsonville, Ga., 15 bass, 49-9, $4,991
  • 4th:         Cody Mackie, McMinnville, Tenn., 14 bass, 45-14, $4,198
  • 5th:         Jason Burroughs, Hodges, S.C., 15 bass, 45-14, $3,328
  • 6th:         Brandon Medlock, Lake Placid, Fla., 15 bass, 44-4, $1,799

Rounding out the Top 10 boaters were:

  • 7th:         Emil Wagner, Marietta, Ga., 15 bass, 44-2, $1,899
  • 8th:         Bobby Padgett, Lagrange, Ga., 15 bass, 43-10, $2,399
  • 9th:         Ben McCann, Bradenton, Fla., 15 bass, 42-9, $1,199
  • 10th:      Josh Butler, Hayden, Ala., 15 bass, 42-3, $1,099

Complete results can be found at MajorLeagueFishing.com.

The top four boaters from each division that earned a $1,000 bonus for placing highest in the event were:

Choo Choo:         Bobby Padgett, LaGrange, Ga., 8th Place, $1,000
Gator:                      Aaron Yavorsky, Palm Harbor, Fla. 2nd Place, $1,000
Music City:          Cody Mackie, McMinnville, Tenn., 4th Place, $1,000
Savannah River: Jason Burroughs, Hodges, S.C., 5th Place $1,000

Marks took home an extra $7,000 as the highest finishing Phoenix MLF Bonus member. Boaters are eligible to win up to an extra $7,000 per event in each Phoenix Bass Fishing League tournament if all requirements are met. More information on the Phoenix MLF Bonus contingency program can be found at PhoenixBassBoats.com.

Tommy Cowart of Danielsville, Georgia, weighed in 10 bass over three days totaling 34 pounds, 5 ounces to win the top Strike King co-angler prize package of $50,000, including a new Phoenix 819 Pro bass boat with a 200-horsepower Mercury outboard.

The top six Strike King co-anglers that qualified for the 2024 Phoenix Bass Fishing League All-American were:

  • 1st:           Tommy Cowart, Danielsville, Ga., 10 bass, 34-5, $50,000
  • 2nd:          Pop Catalin, Cookeville, Tenn., 11 bass, 25-15, $5,502
  • 3rd:          Brian Carroll, Glencoe, Ala., 10 bass, 22-0, $3,006
  • 4th:           Tyler Nekolny, Coral Springs, Fla., 12 bass, 21-13, $2,001
  • 5th:           Randy Paquette, Sarasota, Fla., 12 bass, 21-12, $1,000
  • 6th:           Lamar Oxford, Dale, Ind., 12 bass, 21-2, $900

Rounding out the Top 10 Strike King co-anglers were:

  • 7th:           Justin Stephenson, Jasper, Ala., 10 bass, 20-6, $800
  • 8th:           Timothy Jones, Honea Path, S.C., 10 bass, 20-6, $1,200
  • 9th:           Chad Bleiler, Old Hickory, Tenn., 10 bass, 20-5, $600
  • 10th:        Johnny Suratt, Lawrenceburg, Tenn., 11 bass, 18-8, $550

The top four Strike King Co-anglers from each division that earned a $500 bonus for placing highest in the event were:

Choo Choo:         Brian Carroll, Glencoe, Ala., 3rd Place, $500
Gator:                      Tyler Nekolny, Coral Springs, Fla., 4th Place, $500
Music City:          Pop Catalin, Cookeville, Tenn., 2nd Place, $500
Savannah River: Timothy Jones, Honea Path, S.C., 8th Place $500

The Phoenix Bass Fishing League Presented by T-H Marine Regional Tournament on Lake Eufaula was hosted by the Eufaula Barbour County Chamber of Commerce. It featured the top pros and Strike King co-anglers from the Choo Choo, Gator, Music City and Savannah River divisions. 

The 2023 Phoenix BFL Presented by T-H Marine is a 24-division circuit devoted to weekend anglers, with 128 events throughout the season, five qualifying tournaments in each division. The top 45 boaters and Strike King co-anglers from each division, along with the five qualifying event winners, advance to one of six BFL Regional tournaments where they 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 Phoenix BFL All-American.

The top 45 boaters and Strike King co-anglers plus tournament winners from each Phoenix Bass Fishing League division will also earn priority entry into the Toyota Series, the pathway to the Tackle Warehouse Invitationals and ultimately the Bass Pro Tour. 

Proud sponsors of the 2023 MLF Phoenix Bass Fishing League Presented by T-H Marine include: 13 Fishing, Abu Garcia, B&W Trailer Hitches, Berkley, Black Rifle Coffee, E3, Epic Baits, Favorite Fishing, General Tire, Grundéns, Gill, Lew’s, Lowrance, Mercury, Mossy Oak, Mystik Lubricants, Onyx, Phoenix, Polaris, Power-Pole, Strike King, Tackle Warehouse, T-H Marine, Toyota, Wiley X and YETI.

For complete details and updated tournament information, visit MajorLeagueFishing.com. For regular Bass Fishing League updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow MLF5’s social media outlets at FacebookInstagram, and YouTube.