Walmart Bass Fishing League - Piedmont
Kerr (Sept. 18-19, 2004)
HENDERSON, N.C. — Henderson resident Ray Griffin earned $8,539 Sunday as winner of the two-day, season-ending Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League Piedmont Division Super Tournament on Kerr Lake. His two-day total of 26 pounds, 1 ounce topped 168 fellow competitors in the Boater Division.
Griffin caught 13 pounds, 3 ounces Saturday to advance to Sunday’s competition, where he caught 12 pounds, 14 ounces to post the heaviest two-day weight and claim the win. He caught his tournament-winning bass on a jig-and-pig in the flooded bushes. Griffin’s 5-pound, 2-ounce bass claimed Boater Division big-bass honors and $1,680; he caught his big bass on a jig. He also earned a $1,000 bonus from Ranger Boats as the highest-finishing participant in the Ranger Cup incentive program, and he earned another $1,000 from Garmin for using Garmin electronics exclusively during the event. Griffin finished the season ranked third in the Piedmont Division. This was his fourth career win.
Rounding out the top five boaters are K.R. Redden of Farmville, Va. (21 pounds, 9 ounces, $4,270); Larry Inman of Greensboro (20 pounds, 9 ounces, $2,313); Joseph Peede of Raleigh (19 pounds, 15 ounces, $1,957); and Chris Jennings of Altavista, Va. (17 pounds, 14 ounces, $1,601).
Douglas Haney of Wilson earned $4,219 as winner of the Co-angler Division with a two-day total of 16 pounds, 13 ounces. He caught his bass on a spinnerbait in the main lake. The victory came in Haney’s second career BFL event.
Rounding out the top five co-anglers are Jerry Gray of Glen Allen, Va. (12 pounds, 10 ounces, $2,109); Steve Lowe of Danville, Va. (11 pounds, 15 ounces, $1,143); Scott Haigler of Bahama (10 pounds, 4 ounces, $967); and Gary Vick of Wilson (9 pounds, 11 ounces, $791).
Jeffery Lynn of Hagerstown, Md., claimed co-angler big-bass honors with a 4-pound, 4-ounce bass he caught on a Fat Free Shad. He earned $830 for his big bass.
Each of the BFL’s 24 nationwide divisions features four one-day tournaments and one two-day Super Tournament within the regular season. In Super Tournament competition, the entire field competes on day one and the top 20 percent advances to day two, with the winners determined by the heaviest two-day catch weights. More money is awarded at Super Tournaments as well as more points that count toward year-end angler standings. In a Super Tournament, 300 points are awarded for first place, 299 for second, 298 for third, and so on.
Maurice Freeze of Kannapolis earned $1,000 as the Yamaha “Be the Best” boater points champion in the Piedmont Division with 994 points for the season. Lynn earned Yamaha “Be the Best” points champion honors and $500 in the Co-angler Division. He earned 940 points this season.
The top 30 boaters and co-anglers in the Piedmont Division will advance to the Lake Seminole regional, which will be held Oct. 5-9 in Bainbridge, Ga. There they will compete against qualifying anglers from the Bama, Gator and Mississippi divisions for one of six slots in the 2005 All-American. The All-American awards a $100,000 cash prize to the winning boater and $50,000 to the winning co-angler, making it one of the most prestigious and lucrative events in competitive bass fishing.
Anglers who compete in all five regular-season events within a division but do not advance to regional competition are eligible to fish the Chevy Trucks Wild Card for an All-American berth. Six nationwide regionals plus the Wild Card will each send six boaters and six co-anglers to the All-American for a total field of 84 competitors.
The $6.3 million Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League features 24 divisions nationwide. In BFL competition, boaters and co-anglers are randomly paired, with boaters supplying the boat and fishing against other boaters and co-anglers fishing from the back deck against other co-anglers. For more information or to enter a tournament, call (270) 252-1000 or browse this Web site.
Wal-Mart and many of America’s most respected companies support FLW Outdoors and its six tournament trails. Wal-Mart has been the title sponsor of FLW Outdoors since 1997. For a complete list of FLW Outdoors sponsors and for more information about the premier products and services they offer, please visit FLWOutdoors.com’s sponsor page.