UPCOMING EVENT: Costa FLW Series - 2019 - Lake Champlain

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

McFarland masters Bull Shoals

McFarland masters Bull Shoals
Co-angler Steven McFarland holds up his trophy after winning the Stren Series event on Bull Shoals Lake.

BULL SHOALS, Ark. - Local co-angler Steven McFarland could have zeroed on day four of the season-opening Stren Series Central Division event and still won. But instead, he went out on his home lake and caught three more bass to claim the co-angler crown going away.

This was a weigh-in not of drama, but of domination. While he claimed victory today by nearly 9 pounds, McFarland truly made his move on day three. That day the Mountain Home, Ark., native finally got to fish brush piles, his brush piles, which were located in 40 feet of water. This is especially noteworthy because McFarland was seemingly the only angler who had success fishing deep.

Co-angler winner Steven McFarland sets his fish on the scale Saturday.To trick those fish, he used a green-pumpkin and candy 2-inch Yamamoto grub on a 1/4-ounce jig. He tried other combinations of colors, but nothing else would work.

"They wouldn't look at red, they wouldn't look at yellow," he said.

The result was a 10-pound, 12-ounce catch, the heaviest of the tournament in the Co-angler Division as he jumped from sixth to first. The three bass he caught today were just icing on the cake.

"It's unbelievable," said McFarland, who was fishing in his first FLW Outdoors-administered event. "I love it. I've been dreaming of this since I was knee-high, and now I've done it."

Co-angler Steven McFarland embraces his daughter after winning the Stren Series event on Bull Shoals.Although he didn't need the extra weight, he caught 8 pounds, 3 ounces Saturday. Fishing with pro winner Tim Fleetwood, McFarland was smart enough to switch to a Tennessee Shad-colored Megabass jerkbait.

For his four-day winning catch of 26 pounds, 13 ounces, he took home $5,000.

High five co-anglers

Co-angler Ed Shay caught a bass each day of the tournament and finished second in his division.Ed Shay led the first two days of competition, but was unable to hang with McFarland as the tournament progressed. He did weigh a fish each day, quite an accomplishment in its own right. His lone bass on day four weighed 2 pounds, 1 ounce, pushing his combined total to 18 pounds even. For second place, he earned $3,461.

Michael Waltrip of Fayetteville, Ark., finished third with a four-day weight of 14 pounds and received a check for $2,813.

Co-angler Michael Waltrip finished his first Stren Series event in third place."I think I'm going to give up racing and pursue this fishing thing a little more," he quipped.

Steve Amata of Nixa, Mo., finished fourth with a total weight of 13-6, taking home $2,164, and Barney Moore of Johnston City, Ill., finished fifth with a four-day combined weight of 12-12 for $1,731.

Rest of the best

Rounding out the top 10 co-anglers at the Stren Series Central Division event on Bull Shoals:

6th: Brad Wiegmann of Springdale, Ark., four-day total of 11-1, $1,644
7th: James Southard of Jordan, Ark., 10-12, $1,557
8th: Marc Gilliland of Louisburg, Kan., 10-11, $1,472
9th: Charles Radford of Sullivan, Mo., 10-2, $1,383
10th: Kim Fischer of High Ridge, Mo., 10-0, $1,299

The next Stren Series event will take place March 7-10 on Lake Eufula, the third qualifier in the Southeast Division. The next Stren Series Central Division event will be held on Kentucky Lake May 2-5.

Tags: brett-carlson  co-angler-headline  2007-02-28-bull-shoals 

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