Walmart Bass Fishing League - Mississippi
Columbus Pool (June 25, 2005)
COLUMBUS, Miss. — Boater Joel Ehrhart of Caledonia earned $3,678 Saturday as winner of the Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League Mississippi Division event on the Columbus Pool of the Tennessee Tombigbee Waterway. The tournament was the fourth of five regular-season Mississippi Division events and featured 113 boaters vying for the win, which earned Ehrhart 200 points in the Boater Division.
Ehrhart’s winning catch of five bass weighed 14 pounds, 14 ounces. Ehrhart fished gravel pits near the marina with a shad crankbait to catch his bass.
Finishing second was Brian Kelley of Tuscaloosa, Ala., with four bass weighing 14 pounds, 2 ounces that earned him $1,839. William Fletcher of Arlington, Tenn., claimed $1,206 as the third-place finisher thanks to five bass weighing 12 pounds, 8 ounces. In a fourth-place tie were Sean Dassau of Helena, Ala., and Jeff Doty of Aberdeen. Each angler caught five bass weighing 12 pounds, 6 ounces worth $852.
Kelley took Boater Division big-bass award honors, earning $565 for a 7-pound, 6-ounce bass. He caught his big bass on a brushhog. Kelley also earned an additional $500 as winner of the Ranger Cup award.
Jeff Johnston of Marion, Ark., bested 113 Co-angler Division competitors to earn $1,839 as the co-angler winner, thanks to five bass weighing 13 pounds, 14 ounces that he caught on scum frogs and worms.
Rounding out the top five co-anglers are Rick Fulkerson of Heidelberg (three bass, 10 pounds, 4 ounces, $920); Jeffrey Johns of Terry (five bass, 8 pounds, 9 ounces, $602); and in a fourth-place tie were Justin Sward of Vancleave and Al White of Collins. Sward caught five bass weighing 7 pounds, 8 ounces and White caught four bass weighing 7 pounds, 8 ounces. Each co-angler earned $426.
Fulkerson earned $283 as the co-angler big-bass award winner with a 6-pound, 3-ounce bass he caught on a June bug lizard.
The Mississippi Division will wrap up its regular season Sept. 17-18 with a two-day Super Tournament on Ross Barnett Lake near Brandon.
Following the regular season, the Mississippi 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 Mississippi Division boaters and co-anglers based on year-end points standings will advance to the Lake Martin Regional near Alexander City, Ala., Oct. 18-22 where they will compete against Everglades, Gator 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.