Walmart Bass Fishing League - Gator
Toho (Feb. 19, 2005)
KISSIMMEE, Fla. — Boater Jason Perkins of Crystal Springs earned $4,386 Saturday as winner of the Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League Gator Division event on Lake Toho. The tournament was the first of five regular-season Gator Division events and featured 140 boaters vying for the win, which earned Perkins 200 points in the Boater Division.
Perkins’ winning catch of five bass weighed 19 pounds, 9 ounces. Perkins was casting and pitching to bull rushes using a Zoom junebug worm.
Finishing second was Ronald Smith of Land O’ Lakes with five bass weighing 17 pounds, 9 ounces that earned him $2,193. David Givens of Hernando claimed $1,438 as the third-place finisher thanks to five bass weighing 16 pounds, 10 ounces. Givens won an additional $500 as the Ranger Cup Award recipient. In fourth was Chip Harrison of Bremen, Ind., with five bass weighing 15 pounds, 10 ounces worth $1,116, and finishing fifth and earning $917 was Troy Olivier of Lakeland with five bass weighing 15 pounds, 8 ounces.
Lloyd Griffin of Titusville took Boater Division big-bass award honors, earning $725 for an 8-pound, 11-ounce bass. He caught his big bass on a Zoom worm.
Brad McCullough of Ocala bested 139 Co-angler Division competitors to earn $2,193 as the co-angler winner, thanks to five bass weighing 15 pounds, 10 ounces that he caught on a Gambler junebug worm.
Rounding out the top five co-anglers are Kenneth Bivins of Orlando (five bass, 12 pounds, 2 ounces, $1,096); Frank Mitchum of Orlando (four bass, 11 pounds, 13 ounces, $715); Clyde Allbaugh of Satsuma (two bass, 11 pounds, 3 ounces, $558); and Kimmie Ownby of Lakeland (five bass, 11 pounds, 2 ounces, $459).
Kelly Watterson of Clermont earned $363 as the co-angler big-bass award winner with an 8-pound, 5-ounce bass he caught on a Zoom junebug Mag 2.
The Gator Division’s next event will be held on Kissimmee Lake near Lake Wales March 19, followed by an event on the Harris Chain of lakes near Tavares April 9. The Gator Division’s fourth event will be held on Kissimmee Lake near Lake Wales April 23 and it will wrap up its regular season Sept. 24-25 with a two-day Super Tournament on Lake Toho near Kissimmee.
Following the regular season, the Gator Division boater with the most points will earn $1,000 as the Yamaha “Be the Best” points champion. The co-angler amassing the most points will earn $500 as the Yamaha “Be the Best” points champion in the Co-angler Division.
Every angler who receives weight credit in a tournament earns points, with 200 points going to the winner, 199 for second, 198 for third, and so on except for Super Tournaments, which award 300 points to the winner, 299 for second, 298 for third, and so on. The top 40 Gator Division boaters and co-anglers based on year-end points standings will advance to the Lake Martin Regional near Alexander City, Ala., where they will compete against Everglades, Mississippi and Savannah River Division anglers for one of six slots in the 2006 All-American. With a total purse of $1 million and a potential $140,000 cash prize going to the winning boater and $70,000 going to the winning co-angler, the All-American is one of the most prestigious and lucrative events in bass fishing.
The $8.4 million Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League features 28 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.
Named after the legendary founder of Ranger Boats, Forrest L. Wood, FLW Outdoors administers the Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League and seven other national tournament circuits offering a combined $30 million in awards through 214 events in 2005. The 27-year-old organization is the purveyor of America’s largest and most prestigious fishing tournaments, including the Wal-Mart FLW Tour, EverStart Series, Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League, Wal-Mart Texas Tournament Trail, Wal-Mart FLW Walleye Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Walleye League, Wal-Mart FLW Kingfish Tour and Wal-Mart FLW Redfish Series.
Wal-Mart and many of America’s largest and most respected companies support FLW Outdoors and its tournament trails. Wal-Mart signed on as title sponsor of the FLW Tour in 1997 and today is the title sponsor of all FLW Outdoors events. For more information on Wal-Mart, visit Wal-Mart.com.