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Walmart Bass Fishing League - South Carolina
LAKE HARTWELL (May 18, 2002)
Rikard and Whaley share first place at Wal-Mart BFL Carolina Division tourney
SENECA, S.C. — Greg Rikard, 29, of Leesville, S.C., and Trad Whaley, 28, of Abbeville, S.C., tied for the top spot in Saturday's Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League tournament on Lake Hartwell with five bass weighing 13 pounds, 6 ounces. The catch earned both men $2,606 and 200 points in the 121-angler Boater Division.
Rikard, who also earned a $1,000 bonus from Ranger Boats as the highest-finishing participant in the Ranger Cup incentive program, caught his limit on a Pop-R while fishing docks. Whaley, who also earned a $1,000 bonus from GARMIN for using a fixed-mount GARMIN GPS/Sounder, caught his limit on top-water lures while fishing points. The men topped second-place boater David Williams of Maiden, N.C., by 8 ounces.
Williams finished the one-day tournament with a five-bass catch weighing 12 pounds, 14 ounces worth $1,043.
Mike Holland of Waynesville, N.C. (five bass, 12 pounds, 12 ounces, $834) and Don Graham of Huntersville, N.C., (five bass, 12 pounds, 6 ounces, $765) rounded out the top five boaters.
Narty James of Kannapolis, N.C., earned boater big bass honors and $605 with a 5-pound, 2-ounce bass that he caught on a finesse worm while fishing docks. He finished in 30th place overall with four bass weighing 7 pounds, 15 ounces.
Scott Guyot of Charlotte, N.C., claimed first place and $1,738 in the 121-competitor Co-angler Division with five bass weighing 11 pounds, 13 ounces. He surpassed second-place co-angler David Clemmons of Rock Hill, S.C., by 1 pound, 4 ounces. Clemmons finished with a five-bass catch weighing 10 pounds, 9 ounces worth $869.
Wayne Frierson of Columbia, S.C. (four bass, 9 pounds, 14 ounces, $521); John Proctor of Clemson, S.C. (four bass, 8 pounds, 3 ounces, $417); Tim Carpenter of Mount Holly, N.C. (four bass, 7 pounds, 10 ounces, $347); and Billy Welch of Robbinsville, N.C., (three bass, 7 pounds, 10 ounces, $347) rounded out the top five co-anglers.
Co-angler Douglas Brown of Yemassee, S.C., earned big bass honors and $302 in his division with a 5-pound, 1-ounce bass. He finished 26th thanks to the one fish.
Overall, 42 five-bass limits were caught during the tournament.
The Wal-Mart BFL will visit Lake Wateree June 15 for the fourth of five Carolina Division events. The boater with the most points after the division's season finale, a two-day Super Tournament Oct. 5-6 on Lake Wylie, will be declared the Yamaha “Be the Best” Points Leader and awarded $1,000. The co-angler amassing the most points by the end of the season will receive $500.
The top 30 Carolina Division boaters and co-anglers will advance to regional competition Oct. 22-26 on Lake Seminole near Bainbridge, Ga., where they will go up against top competitors from the Choo Choo, Gator and Piedmont divisions for a shot at qualifying for the Wal-Mart BFL All-American — one of the most lucrative post-season tournaments in competitive angling.
2002 BFL awards could reach $7 million based on full fields.