FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE
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Walmart Bass Fishing League - Savannah River
Lake Keowee (Feb. 2, 2008)
Rhyne wins Wal-Mart BFL event on Lake Keowee
SENECA, S.C. — Boater Tim Rhyne of Inman, S.C., won the Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League Savannah River Division tournament on Lake Keowee Saturday with a five-bass catch weighing 14 pounds, 2 ounces. The victory earned Rhyne $4,508 and placed him one step closer to qualifying for the Lake Seminole Regional Championship in Bainbridge, Ga., Oct. 16-18, where he could ultimately win a new 198VX Ranger boat and a Chevy truck.
“I am overwhelmed with joy,” Rhyne said. “I have been close to winning a tournament so many times, and I finally did it.”
Rhyne caught his bass throwing a Blade Runner on flats and flipping a jig near boat docks. “I actually found this spot with a good friend of mine last year. I was debating going back, because in practice the bite wasn’t that good. On Saturday, I ended up going straight to that flat and catching my limit in 55 minutes. I left that area around 2 p.m. and went to some docks to help my co-angler catch a limit and increase the weight I already had.”
Rounding out the top five boaters are Chris Baxter of Winder, Ga. (five bass, 12-4, $2,652); Mark Gibson of Seneca, S.C. (five bass, 11-14, $1,768); Brandon Cobb of Greenwood, S.C. (five bass, 11-13, $1,238); and Rick Steckelberg of Gainesville, Ga. (five bass, 11-12, $1,061).
Rhyne took home the Boater Division Snickers Big Bass award, earning $835 for a 4-pound, 5-ounce bass.
Brett Littlefield of Greer, S.C., earned $2,652 as the co-angler winner Saturday thanks to five bass weighing 11 pounds, 6 ounces that he caught midlake in 30 to 40 feet of water on a Blade Runner.
Rounding out the top five co-anglers are Charles Dickens of Augusta, Ga. (three bass, 10-9, $1,326); Tommy Kimbrell of Eastanollee, Ga. (five bass, 10-6, $887); Chad Silver of Leicester, N.C. (five bass, 9-14, $619); and Cooper Lindsey of Taylors, S.C. (five bass, 9-12, $530).
Dickens earned $417 as the co-angler big-bass winner after catching a 7-pound, 3-ounce bass he caught on Fluke.
Savannah River Division anglers will visit Clarks Hill Lake in Appling, Ga., March 1 for their second regular-season event, followed by an event on Lake Hartwell in Clemson, S.C., April 5. The division’s fourth qualifying event will be held on Lake Hartwell in Elberton, Ga., May 3. A two-day Super Tournament, the division’s fifth and final event, will be held on Clarks Hill Lake in Appling, Sept. 6-7.
Following the end of regular-season competition, the top 40 boaters and 40 co-anglers based on year-end points standings in the division will advance to the no-entry-fee Lake Seminole Regional Championship where they will compete against top qualifiers from three other BFL divisions. At the Regional Championship boaters will fish for a new Ranger boat and Chevy truck and co-anglers will fish for a new Ranger boat. The top six boaters and top six co-anglers at the Regional Championship will also advance to the All-American presented by Chevy. With a total purse of $1 million, a potential $140,000 cash prize going to the winning boater and as much as $70,000 going to the winning co-angler, the All-American is one of the most prestigious and lucrative events in bass fishing. The winning boater and winning co-angler at the All-American also advance to the no-entry-fee $2 million Forrest Wood Cup. This event, featuring a top award of $1 million, is the sport’s biggest championship.
Tournament anglers aren’t the only ones winning big this season. With the introduction of FLW Fantasy Fishing, FLW Outdoors will be awarding the largest fantasy sports payout in history. Players can become a virtual pro angler by signing up for Player’s Advantage, providing them with exclusive insider information that could guide them to a $100,000 victory at every Wal-Mart FLW Tour stop and the Forrest Wood Cup. Player’s Advantage will give them an edge over the competition and increase their shot for a $1 million cash grand prize that will be awarded to the FLW Fantasy Fishing cumulative points winner. Those who visit FantasyFishing.com today can sign up for Player’s Advantage and FLW Outdoors will include a $15 Wal-Mart gift card.
The $8.8 million Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League features 28 divisions nationwide. In BFL competition, boaters and co-anglers are randomly paired. Boaters supply the boat and fish from the front deck against other boaters while co-anglers compete from the back deck against other co-anglers.
FLW Outdoors, named after Forrest L. Wood, the legendary founder of Ranger Boats, is the largest fishing tournament organization in the world. In 2008 alone the organization is offering more than 90,000 anglers the chance to win over $40 million through 230 tournaments in 10 circuits targeting bass, walleye, redfish, kingfish and striped bass. FLW Outdoors is also taking fishing mainstream with the largest cash awards in the history of fantasy sports, $7.3 million.
For more information about FLW Outdoors and its tournaments, browse FLWOutdoors.com or call (270) 252-1000. For more information about FLW Fantasy Fishing and Player’s Advantage, visit FantasyFishing.com.
Total awards are based on a full field of 200 boats in every tournament.