Mark Hutson of Moncks Corner, S.C., weighed a five-bass limit totaling 27 pounds, 8 ounces Saturday to win the Walmart Bass Fishing League South Carolina Division event on the Santee Cooper lakes. For his victory, Hutson earned $3,505. “I started off the day by fishing beds,” said Hutson. “On my first cast of the day, I caught a fish off a bed that was about a 4-pounder. After that, I went to the lower end of the lake to fish some more beds that I saw in practice. That’s where I happened to see my biggest bass of the day on a bed. I ended up catching her and she weighed over 10 pounds. “I also fished some brush piles out deeper and then went back to the upper end of the lake to fish some more trees,” Hutson continued. “I caught several fish off the trees and was able to cull a few of the fish that I had from before. That’s pretty much where I ended up and I just fished trees and stumps for the rest of the day. “For the bed fish, I was mainly using a Zoom Ultra Vibe Speed Craw in green pumpkin,” Hutson went on to say. “I had a couple other different craws that I was using, and I would rotate them back and forth until I found out what a particular fish wanted. I was catching the fish in the trees on a green pumpkin and red Zoom Brush Hog with a 1/8-ounce weight. The majority of the trees were in 3 to 4 feet of water, and the isolated ones seemed to hold the best fish.” Rounding out the top 10 pros were: 2nd: Ken Ellis, Bowman, S.C., five bass, 25-8, $1,753 3rd: Norm Attaway, Clearwater, S.C., five bass, 24-0, $1,169 4th: Jason Burroughs, Hodges, S.C., five bass, 23-2, $818 + $300 Evinrude Bonus 5th: Greg Rikard, Leesville, S.C., five bass, 22-2, $701 6th: Danny Allen, Loris, S.C., five bass, 21-12, $643 7th: Henry McFadden, Georgetown, S.C., five bass, 20-14, $584 8th: Rodney Chastain, Fountain Inn, S.C., five bass, 20-10, $526 9th: Ross Burns, Columbia, S.C., five bass, 20-2, $467 10th: Patrick Walters, Summerville, S.C., five bass, 19-15, $409 Wyatt Hammond of Myrtle Beach, S.C., weighed in three bass totaling 12 pounds, 1 ounce Saturday to win $1,753 in the co-angler division. Rounding out the top 10 co-anglers were: 2nd: Tommy Milligan, Surfside Beach, S.C., five bass, 11-6, $876 3rd: Steven Felder, Manning, S.C., four bass, 10-10, $585 4th: Bill Crouch, Chesnee, S.C., three bass, 10-1, $409 5th: Marty Gardner, Chesnee, S.C., four bass, 9-7, $351 6th: David Driggers, Saint Stephen, S.C., four bass, 9-3, 321 7th: Scott Frye, Sumter, S.C., four bass, 9-1, $277 7th: Virgil Wicks, Gaffney, S.C., three bass, 9-1, $277 9th: D.J. McEachern, Columbia, S.C., four bass, 8-14, $219 9th: Duane Rinkus, Denver, N.C., three bass, 8-14, $219 The next BFL South Carolina Division tournament is scheduled for May 11 on Clarks Hill Lake in McCormick, S.C. After the last divisional tournament is complete, the top 40 boaters and 40 co-anglers based on point standings will qualify for the Oct. 3–5 Regional Championship on Lake Guntersville in Guntersville, Ala. 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