UPCOMING EVENT: Bass Fishing League - 2016 - Lake Okeechobee

I-oh!-U

Dustin Vaal and Jesse Schultz claimed their second Central Regional Championship title for Indiana University.

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - When you make a big promise, you'd better deliver the goods. Well, Indiana University's Dustin Vaal and Jesse Schultz did just that en route to capturing their second consecutive National Guard FLW College Fishing Central Regional Championship title - this one on Lake Monroe.

At the end of the day-two weigh-in, with IU sitting a pound and 12 ounces behind Truman State, Vaal confidently proclaimed that his team had figured out a pattern that would definitely deliver the victory. There was no question, no uncertainty. According to Vaal, it was a done deal.

Gutsy statement, but the fine line separating conceit from confidence is paved with the assurance that only comes through diligent effort. Clearly, a winning margin of 7 pounds, 9 ounces justified the big talk.

In summary, Schultz and Vaal caught 8-3 on day one, an even 12 on day two and finished with 11-4 inToward the end of day two, IU the final round. Their tournament total of 31-7 earned $25,000 for IU and a Ranger 177TR and an outboard engine for the school's bass club.

"Not only to win this in our hometown, but to repeat at this tournament is amazing," Schultz said. "It really shows what we can do together.

"We have a team mentality. There's a lot of clubs out here that get on the boat together and they're constantly arguing and bickering. That's one thing we never do. It's all about working with each other, bouncing ideas off each other and following through with those ideas."

Vaal said the key pattern was deep cranking over standing timber in 2 to 15 feet of water. He and Schultz had been throwing Team Supreme spinnerbaits and Rat-L-Traps for day one and most of day two. Switching to a Bomber Fat Free Shad at the end of day two flipped on the light switch.

"I switched to that deep diver, and it was on," Vaal said. "They started biting it like crazy. It was just slow, slow cranking over those trees."

Indiana UniversityIU's win was particularly impressive because the final day's short schedule - teams were off the water by 1 p.m. - presented a major challenge for teams that had been banking on afternoon bites. For the first two days, Schultz and Vaal went fishless until after noon. Day three, however, delivered a trio of quality fish by 10:30.

"It was just figuring out that pattern," Vaal said. "Once we figured that out, we could have caught 18 pounds today."

With such a dramatic turnaround in how their day played out, the IU anglers were pleased with their work, but they made no assumptions.

"We try to let the suspense roll up," Schultz said. "We knew we had a good chance after we put those three fish in the boat, but you never know until you walk up on that stage.

"Dustin put his rod down around 10:30 and said, `Jesse, you have to go catch `em.' It got closer and closer to the 1 o'clock (cutoff), and we kept saying, `If we can get one more - one more - it will kind of guarantee this thing.' But that fish never came, so we were in question until the final weigh-in."

Acknowledging that his partner caught all of the team's day-three fish, Schultz joked: "I wish I could have brought a net up here. That Frabill net was slinging fish left and right."

Vaal was quick to note the importance of the team effort that got IU to the top spot: "He was a great net man, and he encouraged me. We were encouraging each other all day - even when Jesse was up there (on the bow) by himself, I was saying, `You're gonna get `em.' When you can encourage each other and keep a positive attitude throughout the whole day, even when you're not catching them, thatSpencer Clark loads a fish for second place Truman State. builds camaraderie, and it makes you a tough team to beat."

With the weather changing from partly cloudy and windy on day one to overcast and cold on day two and then sunny and calm today, the tournament saw several teams zero and many others plagued by low productivity. The first day saw IU nearly lose their shot at contention, but perseverance rewarded them with two big fish.

"We won this tournament not because we brought in three fish today, but because we brought in fish every day," Schultz said. "We were 45 minutes from blanking (on day one) when we caught those two fish. That was a total game-changer."

Slow bite drops Truman State to second

Truman State's Spencer Clark and Mike McCarthy led the field into day three after sacking up the event's only limit and the largest weight, 14-2, on the second day. They had done their damage by cranking riprap and windy points, but the high, bright skies and light winds of day three changed the game, and they ended with only one fish (1-15) and a final weight of 23-14.

"Today we started out on the riprap where we caught a lot of fish yesterday, and we thought we could do it again today," Clark said. "The biggest change was we didn't have the wind and we had sunshine instead of cloud cover. The fish were up on the riprap yesterday, roaming and eating those shad. That's why we caught them yesterday.

The big fish eluded UW-Stout"If we had a longer day, it might have played out differently. We probably would have caught some fish if we would have made a run. We had some spots down lake too, but it's one of those things - you don't know if you should stay and keep doing what you're doing or leave your fish to go find new fish."

Clark had been throwing a Lucky Craft RC 1.5, but with today's calmer conditions, he decided the more subtle presentation of a Rapala Shad Rap would be a better call. His lone keeper hit a natural shad-colored bait.

Despite their low bass turnout, the Truman anglers weren't bored. McCarthy reported catching a 20-pound drum, while Clark couldn't get away from the toothy fish.

"If this was a walleye tournament, I'd be making a living on this lake," Clark joked.

Stout stays in third

For two days, UW-Stout's Jeremy Anibas and Ryan Helke made their presence known by catching big fish. Day one saw them claim the eighth-place spot with a single 5-pounder. The anglers followed up aEastern Kentucky day later by improving to third with three bass that totaled 12-4. Unfortunately, the shifting conditions of day three hid the big ones, and they settled for two keepers whose weight of 2-11 kept them in third place with a total of 19-15.

Anibas caught both of his team's keepers by slow-rolling a ¼-ounce white spinnerbait with tandem willow blades over the tops of lay-downs and standing timber. He and Helke returned to the same cove that produced heavy bass on days one and two, but time was their enemy.

Anibas lamented the short day: "Yesterday, we didn't catch our fish until after 12:15. Also, I think some of our big fish started moving out, because the ones we did catch were smaller. When the big fish move out, that gives the little ones time to get to our baits."

EKU zeros, finishes in fourth

Holding the No. 4 spot since day one, Eastern Kentucky's Jonas Ertel and Kyle Raymer came up empty on day three and finished the tournament in fourth at 16-9. Notably, Ertel was the event's oldest competitor at 24, while 19-year-old Raymer was the youngest.

UW-Whitewater remains in fifth

Day-one leaders Tyler Netzer and Jordan Truttschel also struggled with the day's tough conditions and short time limit. They managed only a 1-pound, 6-ounce fish and ended in fifth place with 14-8.

Tags: david-a-brown  headline-story  2010-11-04-central-regional-lake-monroe 

/news/2016-07-23-thompson-co-angler-champ-on-1000-islands

Thompson Co-angler Champ on 1000 Islands

The 1000 Islands is a great place to take a vacation, especially if you are from the south and want to escape the heat. That is exactly what co-angler Joe Thompson of Clayton, Ga., did and wound up capturing the top spot in the co-angler division bringing home a Ranger Z117 with a 90 hp motor. READ MORE »

/news/2016-07-23-penn-state-university-wins-flw-college-fishing-northern-conference-event-on-chautauqua-lake

Penn State University wins FLW College Fishing Northern Conference Event on Chautauqua Lake

CHAUTAUQUA, N.Y. – The Penn State University duo of Clayton Frey of York, Pennsylvania, and Derek Horner, of State College, Pennsylvania, won the FLW College Fishing Northern Conference event at Chautauqua Lake Saturday with five bass weighing 13 pounds, 3 ounces. The victory earned the club $2,000 and qualified the team for the 2017 FLW College Fishing National... READ MORE »

/news/2016-07-23-michigan-s-dobson-leads-wire-to-wire-wins-costa-flw-series-event-at-1000-islands-presented-by-mercury

Michigan’s Dobson leads wire-to-wire, wins Costa FLW Series Event at 1000 Islands presented by Mercury

CLAYTON, N.Y. – Scott Dobson of Clarkston, Michigan, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 21 pounds, 12 ounces Saturday to win the Costa FLW Series Northern Division event at 1000 Islands presented by Mercury with a three-day total of 15 bass weighing 68 pounds, 8 ounces. For his win, Dobson earned $82,669, including a new Ranger Z518 with a 200-horsepower Evinrude or... READ MORE »

/news/2016-07-23-dobson-dominates-1000-islands

Dobson Dominates 1000 Islands

Scott Dobson didn’t expect it to come so quickly, but 30 minutes is all it took for him to find the winning pattern during his first day of practice for the Costa FLW Series Northern Division event presented by Mercury at 1000 Islands. That pattern would lead him to three consecutive limits of more than 20 pounds, including today’s final-round bag worth 21-12 – the day’s biggest limit, yet his smallest of the tournament. His three-day total weight of 68-8 earned him a check for more than $37,000 along with a Ranger Z518C with a 200-hp engine for being Ranger Cup qualified. READ MORE »

/news/2016-07-22-1000-islands-top-5-patterns-day-2

1000 Islands Top 5 Patterns Day 2

Strong winds limited competition to only the St. Lawrence River on day two of the Costa FLW Series Northern Division event presented by Mercury at 1000 Islands, but that was no problem for the majority of the top 10. Even though most of them fished Lake Ontario on day one, they were able to adjust and stay on the fish today. READ MORE »

/news/2016-07-22-dobson-extends-lead-at-1000-islands

Dobson Extends Lead at 1000 Islands

A windy day two of the Costa FLW Series Northern Division event on the 1000 Islands didn’t stop day-one leader Scott Dobson of Clarkston, Mich., from sacking up the biggest bag of the day. Dobson threw down an impressive 22-pound, 3-ounce limit to extend his lead to 5 pounds over Cal Climpson – a noted Lake Ontario maestro. Dobson’s two-day total stands at 46-12, and with lighter winds tomorrow some big bags are expected. READ MORE »

/news/2016-07-22-lake-ontario-out-for-day-2

Lake Ontario Out for Day 2

It is never good when you wake up the morning of a tournament and every flag you see is standing straight out at 3 a.m., but that was the case this morning for day two of the Costa FLW Series event on the 1000 Islands. READ MORE »

/news/2016-07-21-1000-islands-top-5-patterns-day-1

1000 Islands Top 5 Patterns Day 1

Past experience on this fishery seems to be a big advantage for the top pros through one day of the Costa FLW Series Northern Division event presented by Mercury at 1000 Islands. Scott Dobson leads the way with 24 pounds, 9 ounces, yet there are some serious hammers right on his heels. Dobson fished both the St. Lawrence River and Lake Ontario for his limit, while others went straight to the lake and stayed there. READ MORE »

/news/2016-07-21-dobson-drops-24-9

Dobson Drops 24-9

Despite the weights being dropped on the scale for the opening round of the Costa FLW Series Northern Division event on the 1000 Islands presented by Mercury, it has actually been a tough day of fishing. Strong winds made it hard for the anglers regardless of if they were fishing the lake or river. Smallmouth guru Scott Dobson of Clarkston, Mich., sacked up 24 pounds, 9 ounces on day one to take a 1-8 lead over Canadian stick Cal Climpson. Dobson utilized both the river and lake for his limit, which could play to his advantage if the wind blows like the weathermen are forecasting tomorrow. READ MORE »

/news/2016-07-21-professional-bass-fishing-s-forrest-wood-cup-set-to-visit-wheeler-lake

Professional Bass Fishing’s Forrest Wood Cup set to visit Wheeler Lake

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – The Forrest Wood Cup presented by Walmart, the world championship of professional bass fishing, will visit Wheeler Lake and the Huntsville, Alabama, area August 4-7 to crown bass fishing’s top angler of 2016. Hosted by the Huntsville/Madison County Convention and Visitors Bureau, the tournament will feature 50 of the world’s best bass-fishing... READ MORE »

/news/2016-07-21-1000-islands-midday-update-day-1

1000 Islands Midday Update Day 1

Day one of the Costa FLW Series Northern Division event presented by Mercury at 1000 Islands hasn’t been about if the wind will blow, but when. Everyone knew the gales were coming eventually. Still, the majority of anglers hung a left out of the dock this morning and charged toward Lake Ontario into a steady breeze that turned into a howling wind by midmorning. READ MORE »

/news/2016-07-21-2016-forrest-wood-cup-angler-intro-music

2016 Forrest Wood Cup Angler Intro Music

Each season, the anglers that make the Forrest Wood Cup get to choose the intro music that will play when they walk out on stage at weigh-ins. Naturally, the selections vary as widely as the anglers’ personalities and backgrounds – David Dudley once selected the Chicken Dance song, if that tells you anything. READ MORE »

/news/2016-07-21-transition-time-at-1000-islands

Transition Time at 1000 Islands

The second tournament of the Costa FLW Series Northern Division kicked off on 1000 Islands in an event presented by Mercury this morning out of the Clayton Village Ramp. The 137 pros and co-anglers are challenged with the tough task of dissecting not only the massive St. Lawrence River but also Lake Ontario in search of jumbo-size smallmouths. READ MORE »

/news/2016-07-20-solving-the-1000-islands-puzzle

Solving the 1000 Islands Puzzle

For its second stop, the 2016 Costa FLW Series Northern Division heads back to the 1000 Islands region of upstate New York for the first time since 2012. The 1000 Islands region includes the St. Lawrence River and Lake Ontario and produces some of the best smallmouth fishing on the planet with 4- and 5-pounders being the norm, not the exception. READ MORE »

/news/2016-07-19-forrest-wood-cup-attractions-

Forrest Wood Cup Attractions

Fifty FLW anglers all taking a run at the most coveted title in bass fishing will without doubt take center stage over the course of the four-day Forrest Wood Cup presented by Walmart in Huntsville, Ala., Aug. 4-7, but fans won’t have to wait for the daily weigh-in times to soak up all the action. FLW and its sponsors and partners put together a full schedule of additional events to coincide with the 2016 Cup. READ MORE »

/news/2016-07-19-2016-icast-wrap-up

2016 ICAST Wrap-up

Even at a distance, ICAST can be a blur of new fishing stuff. Below, we’ve gathered everything we published from the week at ICAST – if you missed something, you can find it here. READ MORE »

/news/2016-07-18-sisk-by-ounces-on-ohio-river

Sisk by Ounces on Ohio River

Marty Sisk of Evansville, Indiana, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 17 pounds, 13 ounces, Saturday to win the third FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Illini Division tournament of 2016 on the Ohio River. For his victory, Sisk took home $7,456. READ MORE »

/news/2016-07-18-boggs-flipped-shallow-wood-for-title

Boggs Flipped Shallow Wood for Title

Drew Boggs of Lebanon, Tennessee, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 13 pounds, 10 ounces, Saturday to win the fourth FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Music City Division tournament of 2016 on Old Hickory Lake. Boggs took home $3,028 for his victory. READ MORE »

/news/2016-07-18-profile-jeremy-lawyer

Profile: Jeremy Lawyer

A year ago, Jeremy Lawyer endured a harsh reality as the door to a Forrest Wood Cup berth slammed shut on his runner-up finish at the BFL All-American on Kentucky/Barkley lakes. Flash-forward to June 11 and the boater from Sarcoxie, Mo., saw life come full circle with his All-American win on Barkley. READ MORE »

/news/2016-07-18-poffenberger-found-the-right-four

Poffenberger Found the Right Four

Jake Poffenberger of Brookville, Ohio, weighed four bass totaling 9 pounds, 7 ounces, Saturday to win the fourth FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Buckeye Division tournament of 2016 on the Ohio River. For his victory, Poffenberger earned $4,684. READ MORE »