Sam Lashlee of Hermitage, Tenn., weighed a five-bass limit totaling 22 pounds, 11 ounces Saturday to win the Walmart Bass Fishing League Music City Division event on Kentucky Lake. For his victory, Lashlee earned $3,028.
“When we got back to weigh-in I told my co-angler that there was no way I was going to win this tournament,” said Lashlee. “I figured it was going to take a 28- or 29-pound bag to win, so when I came in with my 22 pounds, I was pretty worried. I lost three real big fish, and usually in a tournament when you lose your three biggest fish that you have on, you’re not going to win. But today, the good Lord shined on me and I was able to pull it out.
“I had found a lot of fish on the beds during practice earlier this week, so I started out fishing shallow,” Lashlee continued. “After about a half hour of finding a lot of empty beds, I realized I needed to move out. I started targeting the staging areas right outside of the spawning areas, and I started catching a lot of fish. It was a great day up until 12:30 when I had battery problems. My trolling motor was dead, and I basically didn’t fish at all after 12:30.
“I caught all of my fish on Strike King lures,” Lashlee went on to say. “I was throwing a Series 5 crankbait, Chartreuse Sexy Shad colored. I also caught a few throwing a 4½-inch Strike King Shad-A-Licious swimbait, and I caught one on a Strike King Rodent. I was fishing in 4 to 8 feet of water, and found them on the gravel, near real deep, subtle drops.”
The next BFL Music City Division tournament is scheduled for April 28 on Lake Barkley in Dover, Tenn. After the fifth Music City Division tournament is complete, the top 40 boaters and 40 co-anglers based on point standings will qualify for the Date Regional Championship on Water in City, State. 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 2012 BFL All-American is being held May 17 – 19 on the Potomac River in National Harbor, Md. Top winners in the BFL can move up to the EverStart Series or even the Walmart FLW Tour.