Walmart Bass Fishing League - Buckeye
SANDUSKY BAY (June 2, 2001)
SANDUSKY, Ohio — Jim Hull of Sidney, Ohio, outpaced 140 competitors Saturday with five bass weighing 17 pounds, 8 ounces to win $4,676 and 200 points on the boater side of the Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League (BFL) Buckeye Division tournament on Sandusky Bay.
Hull edged out Joe Balog of Independence, Ohio, by 3 ounces in the one-day event that set out from Bickley's Boat Dock. Balog finished with a five-bass catch weighing 17 pounds, 5 ounces to win $2,338. Hull caught his limit using green tubes while fishing ridges in the main body of the bay.
Jeff Domonkos of Middleburg, Ohio, took third place and collected $1,169 with five bass weighing 17 pounds, 2 ounces. He also earned an additional $500 as the highest finishing participant in the Ranger Cup incentive program.
Ken Jones of Shelby, Ohio, placed fourth and earned $1,013 with five bass weighing 17 pounds, 1 ounces, while Robert Otto of Dayton, Ohio, placed fifth and earned $935 with five bass weighing 17 pounds.
Balog won the boater Big Bass Award and collected $700 with a 6-pound, 4-ounce bass that he caught on a melon colored tube while fishing dropoffs.
First place in the Co-Angler Division and $2,375 went to Phillip Kirk of Hamilton, Ohio, who topped 140 competitors with five bass weighing 16 pounds, 12 ounces. Second place in the division and $1,1188 went to Steve Harrison of Middletown, Ohio, with five bass weighing 16 pounds, 11 ounces, while Jeff Hahn of Atwater, Ohio, took third place and $594 with five bass weighing 16 pounds, 4 ounces.
Neal Lawrence of Columbus, Ohio, won the co-angler Big Bass Award of $347 with a 5-pound, 3-ounce bass that he caught on a brown tube while fishing a reef.
Overall, 1,103 bass were caught during the tournament, including 160 five-bass limits.
The BFL will visit the Ohio River June 30 for the third of five events in the Buckeye Division. The boater with the most points after the division's season finale, a two-day Super Tournament Sept. 8-9 on Sandusky Bay, will be declared the Points Champion and awarded $1,000. The co-angler amassing the most points by the end of the season will receive $500.
The top 30 boaters and top 30 co-anglers in the Buckeye Division will advance to regional competition Oct. 9-13 on Chautauqua Lake near Jamestown, N.Y., where they will go up against top competitors from the Northeast, Piedmont and Michigan divisions for a shot at qualifying for the $250,000 All-American.
Awards for the 2001 BFL season could reach $5.7 million based on full fields at each tournament.