Walmart Bass Fishing League - Empire
Cayuga (July 9, 2005)
SENECA FALLS, N.Y. — Boater Kraig Kettelkamp of Clifton Springs earned $5,601 Saturday as winner of the Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League Empire Division event on Cayuga Lake. The tournament was the second of five regular-season Empire Division events and featured 155 boaters vying for the win, which earned Kettlekamp 200 points in the Boater Division.
Kettelkamp’s winning catch of five bass weighed 14 pounds, 15 ounces. He threw topwater lures and soft-plastic tube baits over grass in 9 to 10 feet of water to catch his bass. He earned $4,601 for the win plus an additional $1,000 as winner of the Ranger Cup award.
Finishing second was John Lorenzo of Kane, Pa., with five bass weighing 14 pounds, 9 ounces that earned him $2,301. In a third-place tie were Michael Morrin of Waterloo and Thomas Eveland of Nanticoke, Pa. Each angler caught five bass weighing 14 pounds and earned $1,339. Finishing fifth and earning $962 was Mitch Pierson of Newton, N.J., with five bass weighing 13 pounds, 9 ounces.
Stephen Deguzis of Bristol, Conn., took Boater Division big-bass award honors, earning $775 for a 5-pound, 8-ounce bass. He caught his big bass on a Senko.
Richard French of Newfield bested 155 Co-angler Division competitors to earn $2,301 as the co-angler winner, thanks to five bass weighing 13 pounds, 9 ounces that he caught on Senkos, spinnerbaits and crawfish lures.
Rounding out the top five co-anglers are Merrill Showers of New Columbia, Pa. (five bass, 13 pounds, 5 ounces, $1,150); Aaron Fisk of Millville, Pa. (five bass, 13 pounds, 1 ounce, $751); in a fourth-place tie were Robert Quimby of Auburn and Jacob Rice of Osceola Mills, Pa. Both co-anglers caught five bass weighing 11 pounds, 12 ounces worth $533.
Shawn Nollan of Ballston Lake earned $388 as the co-angler big-bass award winner with a 4-pound, 13-ounce bass he caught on a Senko.
The Empire Division’s next event will be held July 30 on Seneca Lake near Romulus, followed by an event at Thousand Islands near Clayton Aug. 20. The Empire Division will wrap up its regular season Sept. 24-25 with a two-day Super Tournament on Lake Champlain near Ticonderoga.
Following the regular season, the Empire 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 Empire Division boaters and co-anglers based on year-end points standings will advance to the Kerr Lake Regional near Henderson, N.C., Oct. 18-22 where they will compete against Northeast, Mountain and Music City 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 FLWOutdoors.com.
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.