UPCOMING EVENT: Rayovac FLW Series - 2015 - Lake Erie

Sward Swings, Connects on Wilson

Sacking up the heaviest limit of day three propelled co-angler Justin Sward to his All-American victory.

FLORENCE, Ala. - Everyone wants to be on top - and Justin Sward eventually got there at the BFL All-American presented by Walmart on Wilson Lake. But entering the final round one notch off the lead gave the co-angler from Birmingham, Ala., a sense of tranquility that no doubt contributed to his banner day. "I wasn't nervous last night because I couldn't believe I was in second (after day two," Sward said. "I've been in first place in several tournaments and I've stumbled and lost. So I was very comfortable last night." "I changed my mindset a few years ago - I swing for the fence and try to catch the biggest bag I canCo-angler winner Justin Sward was the only one in his division to break 20 pounds twice. every day," Sward said. "As a co-angler, you can stomp your foot a lot doing that. But if it works out for you, then that's great." Given Sward's 3-day total of 57-15 and his winning margin of 5 pounds, 2 ounces, it's pretty clear that this one worked out for him. Day three was particularly productive, as he weighed the heaviest sack of his division - 23-9. On day one, Sward caught his fish on a NetBait jig with a Baby Paca Craw trailer. He used a NetBait C-Mac worm on days two and three. "Today, I caught a limit pretty fast on the C-Mac worm and then I culled about three times with a Strike King 6XD," Sward said. "It really slowed down after about 9 o'clock today so I was very fortunate to catch a limit today." In the final round, Sward was paired with Connecticut boater Dino Moutogiannis - the same pairing he had on day two. This, Sward said, gave him a helpful dose of preparation. "As a co-angler, you never know how the day's going to go," he said. "You could be drawn out with the best local pro and he could just have a bad week and that may not be the right situation for you. "Dino stumbled onto the motherlode and I got to fish with him the last two days. I got off to a good start and I was blown away by the weights. Going into today, I knew what we were going to do, so that was a huge advantage for me." Cothran finishes second Day-two co-angler leader Bryan Cothran slipped to second on day three.Bryan Cothran, of Belton, S.C. made a big day-two comeback, as he improved from 19th place to first on the strength of his personal best limit - 24-13. In the final round, he struggled to find the previous day's consistency and ultimately weighed 16-2 for a total of 52-13. Cothran caught his day-three fish on a ¾-ounce Strike King wobble head with a Zoom Old Monster worm (blue fleck) and a Carolina rig with a Zoom Brush Hog (green pumpkin). Maynard makes it to third Brandon Maynard, of Cookville, Tenn., led the co-angler division on day one, slipped to fifth on day twoA Strike King 6XD was the bait of choice for third-place co-angler Brandon Maynard. and then regained to notches to finish third with 51-3. "I fished my butt off for three days," Maynard said. "Yesterday, I dropped the ball and I couldn't get any big bites. Today, I lost a 6-pounder at the boat. But you can't make excuses, you gotta go fish." On days one and three, Maynard caught his fish on a Strike King 6XD. Day two was his slowest and he ended up catching his fish on a Carolina rig. John Bedingfield, of Loganville, Ga. placed fourth with 49-2, while Ethan Flack, of Cullman, Ala., took fifth with 48-13. Fourth-place co-angler John Bedingfield remained in the top-5 all three days.Best of the rest Rounding out the top-10 co-angler leaders at the BFL All-American: 6th: Lee Black, of Danville, Ala., 44-11 7th: Evan Barnes, of Hot Springs, Ark., 40-5 8th: Daniel Brock, or Anna, Texas, 34-4 9th: David Blackstock, of The Colony, Texas, 33-9 10th: Nicholas Marsh, Commerce Township, Mi., 32-15

Tags: co-angler-headline  david-a-brown 

/news/2015-08-29-matual-masters-erie

Matual Masters Erie

David Matual of Chicago, Ill., leaned on his spot hard and sacked up the biggest bag of day three weighing 22 pounds, 6 ounces. For his final-day rally he claimed the Rayovac FLW Series Northern Division victory on Lake Erie with a three-day total of 65 pounds, fending off Jared Rhode by a mere 7 ounces. Drop-shotting over shallow reefs delivered all of Matual’s fish and earned him a check worth more than $31,000. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-29-hicks-tops-co-angler-field-on-erie

Hicks Tops Co-angler Field on Erie

At 8:30 a.m., Justin Hicks turned to the camera boat following him and Jared Rhode – who split the day-two lead with Dave Lefebre – and said: “I sure would like to win this.” Eight hours later, the young man from Roanoke, Va., lifted the first place trophy at the final Rayovac FLW Series Northern Division event on Lake Erie. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-29-lake-erie-day-3-midday-update

Lake Erie Day 3 Midday Update

Lake Erie put on a different face for day three of the final Rayovac FLW Series Northern Division event. After a rough day one, yesterday’s calm and mostly sunny conditions offered comfortable running and fishing conditions. Today was still a far cry from the brutal waves of day one - and prior practice days - but windier conditions and overcast skies seemed to present a more challenging scenario. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-28-top-5-patterns-from-lake-erie-day-2

Top 5 Patterns From Lake Erie Day 2

Pennsylvania pro Dave Lefebre and Ohio pro Jared Rhode tied for the day-two lead in Rayovac FLW Series Northern Division action on Lake Erie with 43 pounds, 9 ounces. Both pros caught their fish on drop-shots. Here are the details of the rest of the top five. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-28-lefebre-rhode-tied-at-the-top

Lefebre, Rhode Tied at the Top

Notching his second day of 20-plus pounds, FLW Tour pro Dave Lefebre tallied 43 pounds, 9 ounces and tied day-one leader Jared Rhode for the day-two top spot at the Rayovac FLW Series Northern Division event on Lake Erie. Lefebre caught his 22-3 limit on Rapala DT-10 crankbaits, while Rhodes tempted his 19-15 catch with drop-shots. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-28-lake-erie-day-2-midday-update

Lake Erie Day 2 Midday Update

With winds shifting from yesterday’s northerly blow to a warmer southerly direction, day two of the Rayovac FLW Series Northern Division event on Lake Erie brought calmer conditions with greater ability to methodically work key spots. Offshore, waves ran 1 to 2 feet, with leeward areas behind the Lake Erie Islands nearly flat. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-27-rhode-cracks-23-10-for-erie-lead

Rhode Cracks 23-10 for Erie Lead

Jared Rhode played his cards and the gamble paid off better than expected, as the pro from Port Clinton, Ohio, took the day-one lead at the Rayovac FLW Series Northern Division event on Lake Erie with a limit catch weighing 23 pounds, 10 ounces. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-27-top-5-patterns-from-lake-erie-day-1

Top 5 Patterns from Lake Erie Day 1

Taking off this morning, the FLW Tour pro from Erie, Pa., knew the day’s north wind would keep him from making a long run to a big-fish spot close to his home. However, keeping it local and fishing a little past Pelee Island to the west delivered a solid second-place catch. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-27-hunting-erie-s-brown-fish

Hunting Erie’s Brown Fish

It’s going to be an Easter egg hunt on Lake Erie, but at least the great lake will behave a little better during the final Rayovac FLW Series Northern Division event than it did during practice. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-26-smallmouth-slugfest-on-tap-at-erie-

Smallmouth Slugfest on Tap at Erie

Florida pro Glenn Browne leads the race with 492 points, largely due to his win at the previous divisional event on Lake Champlain. Following well within striking distance are Canadian pro Cory Johnston (484 points) and Louisianan Gerald Spohrer (483), who found his way into the Northern Division quite incidentally. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-21-sunny-skies-at-the-top

Sunny Skies at the Top

It was his first and the Forrest Wood Cup’s last. With the Cup going exclusively to professionals next year, Sunny Hawk, like the rest of the co-anglers, knew this was the last chance for someone to be crowned a co-angler Cup champion. While many made a run at the title – including three past co-angler champions – Hawk made the most of it, weighing in three fish for 6 pounds, 5 ounces on day two for a tournament total of 19-11 to claim his first career win. “For my first win to be at the Cup, I’m pretty pumped,” Hawk said while holding the $50,000 first-place check. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-20-sunny-s-day-on-the-back-deck

Sunny’s Day on the Back Deck

It’s almost as if Roy and Sunny Hawk switched bags. The father-son duo came to the Forrest Wood Cup with big aspirations – Roy on the pro side and Sunny as a co-angler. So when a Hawk weighed in a limit for 13 pounds, 6 ounces on day one, that was exactly what they hoped would happen, though they probably didn’t think it would be Sunny who did it from the back of the boat. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-17-top-10-patterns-from-lake-dardanelle

Top 10 Patterns from Lake Dardanelle

Jason Lieblong, who won the Rayovac FLW Series Central Division event on Lake Dardanelle, devoted most of his time to fishing reed lines with a mix of chatterbaits, frogs and Texas-rigged worms. He also caught fish by dragging a Texas-rigged 10-inch worm past brush piles in 6-8 feet. Lieblong amassed a three-day total of 46 pound, 3 ounces. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-15-lieblong-dominates-dardanelle-rayovac

Lieblong Dominates Dardanelle Rayovac

Having lead the event for two days, the pro from Conway, Ark., carried a 14-ounce lead into the final round. After weighing a limit of 12 pounds, 2 ounces on day three, Lieblong closed the door with a tournament total of 46-3 and a 2-pound, 2-ounce margin of victory. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-15-smith-takes-co-angler-title-at-dardanelle

Smith Takes Co-Angler Title At Dardanelle

READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-15-dardanelle-midday-update-day-3

Dardanelle Midday Update Day 3

READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-14-lieblong-holds-on-to-lead-at-dardanelle

Lieblong Holds On To Lead At Dardanelle

Current events proved perplexing for Jason Lieblong, even though he retained his lead at the Rayovac FLW Series Central Division event on Lake Dardanelle. The pro from Conway, Ark., topped the day-one leaderboard with 19 pounds, 10 ounces, but saw his second day’s productivity slip to 14-7 for a total weight of 34-1 and a 14-ounce lead going into the final round. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-14-top-5-patterns-from-lake-dardanelle-day-2

Top 5 Patterns From Lake Dardanelle Day 2

Arkansas pro Jason Lieblong held on to the top spot in Rayovac FLW Series Central Division action on Lake Dardanelle with 34 pounds, 1 ounce. Flipping plastics and a jig produced all of his fish. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-14-dardanelle-midday-update-day-2

DARDANELLE MIDDAY UPDATE DAY 2

READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-13-lieblong-leads-on-dardanelle-with-19-10

Lieblong Leads on Dardanelle with 19-10

Rising water brought increased current to Lake Dardanelle, and Jason Lieblong leveraged this dynamic to take the lead on day one of Rayovac FLW Series Central Division action on this Arkansas River impoundment. He brought in a limit that weighed 19 pounds, 10 ounces. In the early hours of his day the pro from Conway, Ark., alternated between backwaters and main-lake banks in an effort to determine where the fish were most active. Once the sun gained altitude and harsh light had pushed the fish tight to cover, he committed to the bank. “I just put the trolling motor down and went fishing and found some fish on your obvious stuff like laydowns and grass. I even caught some in open water with no structure whatsoever,” Lieblong says. “I found a little current, and that’s key.” READ MORE »