Johnson wins co-angler title

Sam Moody of Athens, Ala., weighed a five-bass limit totaling 25 pounds, 3 ounces Saturday to win the Walmart Bass Fishing League Mississippi Division event on Pickwick Lake. For his victory, Moody earned $4,872.

“Basically I threw an Alabama rig all day,” said Moody. “I started out fishing the main river and tried that for about two hours. The wind was so bad that got we couldn’t stay out there without getting blown around. I decided to get off the main river and try to find places that were out of the wind. I had four fish at that time and my partner had one. We ended up fishing some places that I had caught some good fish in practice, but didn’t have any luck. The wind had changed from the previous day and it seemed to have blown the fish out.

“I finally found a channel bend that had some brush on it and started throwing the A-rig over it,” Moody continued. “That’s where I caught the biggest one of the day – a 10-pound, 14-ouncer. After I landed the big fish we decided to stay there for the rest of the day. My partner still only had two fish in the livewell, so I let him use the same bait I was catching them on. I felt like I had a pretty good chance of being in the top-5 and I wanted him to fill his limit as well.

“All the fish we caught came from around 10 feet of water and related to the brush and stumps,” Moody went on to say. “I probably caught around 15 keepers throughout the day and my bag consisted of all largemouth. I had considered going to the dam to fish strictly for smallmouth but with the way the wind was blowing, I opted to stay on the lower end of the lake. It was good decision.”

Moody stated that his equipment was a big factor in his win. The A-rig he threw all day was tipped with Strike King Shadalicious swimbaits and slung on a Dobyns swimbait rod. Conditions on the lake Saturday were blustery. Plagued with 15 to 25 mph winds all day, Moody credits his Ranger Z521 and Mercury outboard for giving him the confidence he needed to move around the lake.

Rounding out the top 10 pros were:

2nd: Garrett Riles, Potts Camp, Miss., four bass, 21-8, $2,436
3rd: Mike Kelly, Pontotoc, Miss., five bass, 21-7, $1,623
4th: Justin Atkins, Columbus, Miss., five bass, 21-3, $1,137
5th: Raymond Owen, Iuka, Miss., five bass, 21-0, $974
6th: Grant Galloway, Houlka, Miss., five bass, 20-13, $893
7th: Jimmy Stallins Jr., Byhalia, Miss., five bass, 20-5, $812
8th: Chris Quaintance, Muscle Shoals, Ala., five bass, 20-2, $731
9th: Alfred Williams, Jackson, Miss., four bass, 19-5, $650
10th: Will Terrell, Memphis, Tenn., five bass, 19-4, $568

Scott Johnson of Corinth, Miss., weighed a five-bass limit totaling 19 pounds, 12 ounces Saturday to win $2,436 in the co-angler division.

Rounding out the top 10 co-anglers were:

2nd: Lucas Madison, Harrison, Ark., five bass, 19-10, $1,218
3rd: Jesse Steadham, Florence, Miss., four bass, 19-3, $814
4th: Bo McAdams, Killen, Ala., five bass, 17-13, $568
5th: Taylor Odom, Meridian, Miss., five bass, 17-10, $487
6th: Casey Martin, Ripley, Miss., five bass, 16-9, $447
7th: Chad Mayfield, Brandon, Miss., four bass, 15-2, $406
8th: Brian Cissom, Ripley, Miss., five bass, 14-15, $365
9th: Ansel Davis, Tylertown, Miss., five bass, 14-7, $325
10th: Jason Smith, Killen, Ala., four bass, 14-4, $284

The next BFL Mississippi Division tournament is scheduled for April 20 on Ross Barnett Reservoir in Brandon, Miss. After the last divisional tournament is complete, the top 40 boaters and 40 co-anglers based on point standings will qualify for the Oct. 10-12 Regional Championship on Kentucky Lake in Gilbertsville, 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. The 2013 BFL All-American is being held June 27–29 on the Nickajack Lake in Chattanooga, Tenn. Top winners in the BFL can move up to the EverStart Series or even the Walmart FLW Tour.

Image courtesy FLW Outdoors

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