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    Walmart Bass Fishing League - Gulf Coast

    PEARL RIVER (Feb. 16, 2002)


    Perkins wins Wal-Mart BFL Gulf Coast Division opener


    SLIDELL, La. — Hank Perkins, Collinsville, Miss., topped 51 Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League competitors Saturday on the Pearl River with five bass weighing 14 pounds, 6 ounces. The catch earned him $2,020 and 200 points in the Boater Division.

    Perkins, 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 Mann's Baby 1 Minus that he was casting to grass in approximately 3 feet of water. The catch topped second-place boater Herbert Dicharry, Gulfport, Miss., by 1 pound, 3 ounces. Dicharry finished the one-day tournament with a five-bass catch weighing 13 pounds, 3 ounces worth $1,010.

    Ted Marodis, Biloxi, Miss. (five bass, 12 pounds, 10 ounces, $606); Jason Kilpatrick, Satsuma, Ala. (five bass, 11 pounds, 12 ounces, $485); and Larry Mixon, Bogalusa, La., (five bass, 11 pounds, 6 ounces, $444) rounded out the top-five boaters.

    Marodis and 26th-place finisher Jeff Seube, Arabi, La., tied for boater big bass honors with identical 3-pound, 13-ounce bass. Both men received a $127 bonus for their catch.

    Alan Hults, Gautier, Miss., claimed first place and $1,010 in the 51-competitor Co-angler Division with five bass weighing 10 pounds, 15 ounces. He squeaked by second-place co-angler Cade Thomas, Bogalusa, La., by 4 ounces thanks to a Storm Subwart that he was casting to shallow grass. Thomas finished with a four-bass catch weighing 10 pounds, 11 ounces worth $505.

    Steven Duty, Collins, Miss. (three bass, 7 pounds, 13 ounces, $303); Matt Hults, Gautier, Miss. (four bass, 6 pounds, 5 ounces, $242); and Howard Morgan, Saucier, Miss. (five bass, 5 pounds, 14 ounces, $222) rounded out the top-five co-anglers.

    Co-angler William Hill, Gulfport, Miss., earned big bass honors and $127 in his division with a 3-pound, 9-ounce bass.

    Overall, 13 five-bass limits were caught during the tournament.

    The Wal-Mart BFL will visit the Mobile Delta March 23 for the second of five Gulf Coast Division events. The boater with the most points after the division's season finale, a two-day Super Tournament Sept. 28-29 on the Pearl 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 Gulf Coast Division boaters and co-anglers will advance to regional competition Oct. 29-Nov. 2 on Lake Hamilton near Hot Springs, Ark., where they will go up against top competitors from the Louisiana, Okie and Ozark 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.