Walmart Bass Fishing League - Hoosier
PATOKA (May 18, 2002)
BIRDSEYE, Ind. — Ron Haseker Jr. of Louisville, Ky., topped 198 Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League competitors Saturday on Lake Patoka with five bass weighing 16 pounds, 7 ounces. The catch earned him $4,986 and 200 points in the Boater Division.
Haseker, 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 crankbait and a split-shot rig that he was fishing in creeks and flooded brush. The catch topped second-place boater Shawn Bruntlett of Indianapolis, Ind., by 2 ounces.
Bruntlett finished the one-day tournament with a five-bass catch weighing 16 pounds, 5 ounces worth $2,493.
Dale Fess of Greenville, Ind. (four bass, 16 pounds, 1 ounce, $1,346); Marty Sisk o f Evansville, Ind. (five bass, 16 pounds, 1 ounce, $1,346); and Guy Linville of Indianapolis, Ind., (five bass, 13 pounds, 10 ounces, $1,097) rounded out the top five boaters.
Haseker and Fess tied for boater big bass honors with a 5-pound, 4-ounce bass each. Both anglers receive $495 for their catch.
Don Miles of Mishawaka, Ind., claimed first place and $2,437 in the 192-competitor Co-angler Division with three bass weighing 11 pounds, 1 ounce. He surpassed second-place co-angler Lawrence Hatton of Lexington, Ind., by 4 ounces. Hatton finished with a four-bass catch weighing 10 pounds, 13 ounces worth $1,218.
Jeffrey Jones of Marengo, Ind. (three bass, 10 pounds, 5 ounces, $731); Todd Owens of Middletown, Ohio (four bass, 9 pounds, 12 ounces, $585); and Gary Melson of Louisville, Ky., (four bass, 8 pounds, 12 ounces, $536) rounded out the top five co-anglers.
Miles and Bryan Abbott of Lafayette, Ind., tied for co-angler big bass honors. Each man received $240 for a 4-pound, 13-ounce bass. Abbott finished 12th with two bass weighing 7 pounds, 7 ounces.
Overall, 13 five-bass limits were caught during the tournament.
The Wal-Mart BFL will visit Lake Monroe June 29 for the third of five Hoosier Division events. The boater with the most points after the division's season finale, a two-day Super Tournament Sept. 7-8 on the Ohio River, 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 Hoosier Division boaters and co-anglers will advance to regional competition presented by Yamaha Oct. 15-19 on Kentucky Lake near Gilbertsville, Ky., where they will go up against top competitors from the Great Lakes, Illini and Michigan 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.