CLEMENS, Mich. – Matt Belletini of Birmingham, Mich., weighed a five-bass limit totaling 23 pounds, 15 ounces Saturday to win the Walmart Bass Fishing League Michigan Division event on Lake St. Clair. For his victory, Belletini earned $3,766.
“The day started fast,” said Belletini. “I had about 19 pounds by 9:30 or 10 o’clock. My co-angler had the tournament won by 11. He was smoking me in the back of the boat. He kept culling 4-pounders while I still had two 3 ½-pounders in the box. I really had to work to get the last two big fish; I finally got a 4- and 5-pounder in the last hour of the tournament.
“We were basically fishing one large area that had three key spots,” Belletini continued. “We were drop-shotting in 14 to 16 feet of water; I was using Nemesis Gobies. The bass seemed to be feeding on perch that were holding in the area.”
Belletini went on to say that it was a bittersweet day for him, as he lost two Dobyns rods in the lake.
Rounding out the top 10 boaters:
2nd: Erhardt Tulgestka, Posen, Mich., five bass, 23-8, $1,883
3rd: John Leader, Granger, Ind., five bass, 21-3, $1,256
4th: Mark Modrak, China Township, Mich., five bass, 21-1, $879 plus $1,000 Evinrude bonus
5th: Joe Balog, Harrison Township, Mich., five bass, 20-5, $753
6th: Dallas Maybee, Davison, Mich., five bass, 20-1, $690
7th: Kyle Greene, Ortonville, Mich., five bass, 19-15, $628
8th: Scott Dobson, Clarkston, Mich., five bass, 19-9, $533
8th: Don McCulla, New Baltimore, Mich., five bass, 19-9, $533
10th: Kirk Simpson, Waterford, Mich., five bass, 19-3, $417
Complete results can be found here.
Marble lands co-angler title
Rounding out the top 10 co-anglers:
2nd: Larry Riley, Newark, Ohio, five bass, 20-12, $942
3rd: Philip Holwerda, Ada, Mich., five bass, 18-11, $627
4th: David Michaelis, Commerce, Mich., five bass, 18-10, $439
5th: Donald Fleitz, Petersburg, Mich., five bass, 18-8, $377
6th: Matthew Hook, Plainwell, Mich., five bass, 18-4, $345
7th: Jon Witt, Kalamazoo, Mich., five bass, 18-3, $314
8th: Josh Kolodzaike, Toledo, Ohio, five bass, 18-1, $282
9th: Keith Ramseyer, Bay City, Mich., five bass, 17-13, $251
10th: Allan Stephens, Florence, Ky., five bass, 17-12, $220
Complete co-angler results can be found here.
The next BFL Michigan Division tournament is scheduled for July 14 on the Detroit River in Trenton, Mich. After the fifth Michigan Division tournament is complete, the top 40 boaters and 40 co-anglers based on point standings will qualify for the Oct. 11-13 Regional Championship on Lake Barkley in Kuttawa, Ky. Boaters will compete for a top award of a Ranger Z518 with a 200-horsepower Evinrude or Mercury outboard and a Chevy Silverado, while co-anglers will fish for a new Ranger Z518 with a 200-horsepower Evinrude or Mercury outboard.
The BFL is a 24-division circuit devoted to weekend anglers, with 120 tournaments throughout the season, five in each division. The top 40 boaters and co-anglers from each division qualify for a regional tournament and compete to finish in the top six, which then qualifies them for one of the longest-running championships in all of competitive bass fishing – the Walmart BFL All-American presented by Chevy. Top winners in the BFL can move up to the EverStart Series or even the Walmart FLW Tour.
FLW is the industry’s premier tournament-fishing organization, providing unparalleled fishing resources and entertainment to our sponsors, fans and host communities. FLW is offering anglers of all skill levels the opportunity to compete for millions in prize money nationwide in 2012 over the course of 191 tournaments across five tournament circuits, each providing an avenue to the sport’s richest payday and most coveted championship trophy – the Forrest Wood Cup. FLW is committed to providing a lifestyle experience that is the “Best in Fishing, On and Off the Water,” through a variety of platforms including tournaments, outdoor expos and the world’s richest fantasy sports game – FLW Fantasy Fishing. For more information about FLW and FLW Fantasy Fishing, visit FLWOutdoors.com or FantasyFishing.com and look for FLW on Twitter and Facebook.