KINGSVILLE, Md. — Richard Haber Jr. of Severn, Md., won the Walmart Bass Fishing League Northeast Division tournament on Chesapeake Bay Saturday with a five-bass catch weighing 18 pounds, 6 ounces. The victory earned Haber $3,718 and placed him one step closer to qualifying for the Potomac River Regional Championship in Marbury, Md., Oct. 8-10, where he could ultimately win a new Ranger boat and a Chevy truck.
“I honestly didn’t feel I had enough weight to win with the way the weights have been during previous tournaments this year,” said Haber. “I thought I would need 20 pounds or better for a five-fish limit and that I would only place in the top five.”
Haber fished the north end of the bay around a series of docks. He caught his limit using green-pumpkin Senkos and a black buzzbait.
Sunny conditions and minimal pressure from other boaters on the lake gave Haber exactly what he needed for a successful day of fishing. “I was fishing docks, so I needed the fish to be under the docks. There wasn’t a lot of pressure in the places I was fishing so it worked out for me good.”
Rounding out the top five boaters are George Loope of Mount Airy, Md., and Daniel Rodriguez of Monkton, Md. (tied for second with five bass, 17-9, $1,548 apiece); John McGrath of Atco, N.J. (five bass, 17-3, $867); Jerry Gerlach of Lincoln University, Pa., and J.R. Robertson of Darlington, Md. (tied for fifth with five bass, 16-13, $713 apiece).
John McGrath took home the Boater Division Big Bass award, earning $485 for a 6-pound, 2-ounce bass he caught.
Carl Hansen III of Nottingham, Pa., earned $1,859 as the co-angler winner Saturday thanks to five bass weighing 16 pounds, 4 ounces that he caught on a jig.
Rounding out the top five co-anglers are Danny Vass of Street, Md. (five bass, 12-10, $929); Edward Bisaga of Franklinville, N.J. (two bass, 9-13, $619); Brett Ewing of Waldorf, Md. (three bass, 8-1, $382); Justin Largen of Centreville, Va. (two bass, 8-1, $382); Tim Sherman of Cub Hill, Md. (four bass, 8-1, $382).
Danny Vass earned $242 as the co-angler Big Bass winner after catching a 5-pound, 6-ounce bass.
The next Northeast Division event, a two-day Super Tournament, will be held on Chesapeake Bay in Northeast, Md., Sept. 12-13.
The top 40 boaters and 40 co-anglers in each of the BFL’s 28 divisions at the end of the season advance to a no-entry-fee Regional Championship where boaters fish for a new Ranger boat and a Chevy truck and co-anglers fish for a new Ranger boat. Seven regional championships will each send six boaters and six co-anglers to the no-entry-fee Walmart BFL All-American presented by Chevy, which features a $1 million purse and a top award of $140,000 in the Boater Division and $70,000 in the Co-angler Division. Anglers who compete in all five regular-season events within a division but do not advance to a Regional Championship are eligible to compete in the Chevy Wild Card, which will also send six boaters and six co-anglers to the All-American for a total of 48 boaters and 48 co-anglers advancing through BFL competition.
The winning boater and winning co-angler at the All-American will advance to the no-entry-fee $2.5 million Forrest Wood Cup in Atlanta in 2010. This event, featuring a top award of $1 million, is the most lucrative tournament in all of competitive bass fishing. In all, the BFL offers weekend anglers the opportunity to qualify for three no-entry-fee championships with total cash awards exceeding $3.5 million. Plus, the top 40 boaters and 40 co-anglers from each BFL division may move up to the Stren Series for 2010 while All-American champions have the option to advance directly to the Walmart FLW Tour.
In BFL competition, boaters supply the boat and compete from the front deck against other boaters. Co-anglers compete from the back deck against other co-anglers.
As the nation’s leading provider of affordable, close-to-home weekend tournaments, the BFL is widely credited with opening competitive bass fishing to the masses. It also serves as a steppingstone for anglers who wish to advance to the Stren Series and ultimately the FLW Tour – bass fishing’s most lucrative tournament circuit.
Total awards are based on a full field of 200 boats in every tournament.
FLW Outdoors, named after Forrest L. Wood, the legendary founder of Ranger Boats, is the largest fishing tournament organization in the world. FLW Outdoors also is taking fishing mainstream with FLW Fantasy Fishing, offering the largest awards possible in the history of fantasy sports, $10 million in cash and prizes. Sign up for Player’s Advantage for only $10 to get your edge and win.
For more information about FLW Outdoors and its tournaments, visit FLWOutdoors.com or call (270) 252-1000. For more information about FLW Fantasy Fishing and Player’s Advantage, visit FantasyFishing.com.