UPCOMING EVENT: Costa FLW Series - 2019 - Lake Mead

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

Final exam

The top-five FLW College Fishing Central Regional finalists head out onto Kinkaid Lake.

CARBONDALE, Ill. - Well, it hasn't been easy by any stretch. But as the top five collegiate teams departed the marina shortly after 7 a.m., anglers were hopeful that the past week of intense study and trial by fire on Lake Kinkaid will finally pay huge dividends. With each of the top five teams having already qualified for the 2012 FLW College Fishing National Championship - an amazing accomplishment in its own right - anglers can now set their sights on procuring the other main goal of this event, capturing the FLW College Fishing Central Regional Championship title.

"We've qualified for the championship, which was one of our main goals, and now we can focus solely on winning," said Jimmy Morrow, whose Northwestern squad leads all teams heading into the final day of competition on Kinkaid Lake. "If we don't win now, we'd be disappointed."

"Winning this tournament would be huge," said Morrow's partner, Matthew Kestufskie. "We hoped we could make the (final) five but we never thought we'd be sitting here in first place on the final day. If we won the title, it'd really be a big deal back on campus. We really want to win."

However, just like the previous two days of competition, today promises to be another grueling day on the water. With teams struggling all week just to bring in one fish, the Northwestern team - which boasts a total catch of 12 pounds, 14 ounces, nearly 2 pounds more than their next closest competitors - is in the driver's seat, literally and figuratively.

"We're finally starting to understand how the fish are behaving," said Kestufskie. "We spent a lot of time doing research on this lake before we got here and it's finally paying off."

"I think we might hit a morning spot real quickly and then go to our primary spot for the rest of the day," added Morrow. "We don't want to waste any time today. In the area we're fishing we don't catch many short fish at all. All the fish we're catching are quality bites. And I think if we can catch two keepers today we'll be in really good shape."

However, therein lies the rub. All week, anglers have been able to catch fish. That really hasn't been the issue. They just haven't been able to catch many fish measuring 16 inches or longer - the legal length required to bring fish to the scales.

Other teams acknowledge the difficulty of making up ground this week on Kinkaid Lake.

"The most important thing is to go out there and get 16-inch bites," said Jody Derks, whose University of Wisconsin Stevens Point team currently sits in second place overall with a catch of 10 pounds, 6 ounces. "I think the key for us is going to be those first 20 or 30 minutes because that's when we've been catching most of our bigger fish."

"We're going to stick with we've been doing all week - punching grass mats," said Kestufskie. "The only thing that makes us nervous is that (that technique) didn't work out so great yesterday. But it's kind of too late in the tournament to start switching (tactics) now."

But no matter what the final outcome, UW Stevens Point team members believe they've already accomplished their main objective.

"I want to win this tournament badly," said Kestufskie. "But I'm just jacked to have qualified for the national championship."

"Yeah, we're going to the national championship," added Derks. "And you can't ask for more than that."

While the other three teams in the finals, Indiana University (fifth place), Kansas State University (fourth place) and SIU-Edwardsville (third place), will have a tough task in catching the leaders, it's not out of the question that they can pull off the upset, even though all three of those squads are more than 5 pounds out of first place.

Kansas State University"Is the pressure off? I don't know if the pressure is off," said Ryan Patterson of Kansas State University, who remains the only angler to qualify for the finals fishing solo - the end result of partner scheduling conflict. "I mean, we're fishing for $50,000."

Click here for a complete list of results.

Tourney format and event logistics

In today's competition, the final five Central Regional teams will compete for a top award of $50,000 to be split between the school and bass fishing club; $37,500 for the bass club, which includes $12,500 in cash as well as a Ranger 177TR with a 90 horsepower Evinrude or Mercury outboard wrapped in school colors, and $12,500 for their school.

Final takeoff is under way on Kinkaid Lake.Saturday's final weigh-in will be held at approximately 4:30 p.m., or upon the completion of the SIU-North Dakota State football game. Today's weigh-in is free and open to the public.

Each of the top five teams from FLW College Central Regional Championship have already earned an automatic berth into the 2012 FLW College Fishing National Championship, which features a first-place award of $100,000; $25,000 for their school and $50,000 cash and a Ranger 177TR bass boat with a 90 horsepower Evinrude or Mercury outboard wrapped in school colors for their fishing club.

SIU will again host today's College Fishing Festival. Students and fishing fans alike will be treated to the National Guard Warrior Challenge, a Ranger Boat simulator, tailgate games, a sports zone along with contests for cash and several prize giveaways. The festival will take place at the SIU Arena from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday.

Bass-fishing fans take note

Coverage of the Central Regional Championship will be broadcast in high-definition (HD) on VERSUS. That episode of "FLW Outdoors" will air Nov. 20 from 1-2 p.m. ET. "FLW Outdoors," hosted by Jason Harper, is broadcast to approximately 500 million households worldwide.

Want to watch Saturday's FLW College Fishing Central Regional Championship weigh-in live but can't make it in person? Then tune into FLW Live on FLWOutdoors.com shortly before 4 p.m. Central time to watch live streaming video and audio of today's weigh in.

Saturday's conditions

Sunrise: 6:58 a.m.
Temperature at takeoff: 60 degrees
Expected high temperature: 84 degrees
Water temperature: 68-72 degrees
Wind: SSE at 3-11 mph
Humidity: 51 percent
Day's outlook: sunny

Related links:

Event schedule

Tags: gary-mortenson  morning-story  2011-10-06-central-regional-lake-kinkaid 

A Different Okeechobee

A Different Okeechobee

Cold fronts, dirty water and lower water levels make for an interesting start to the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division season. READ MORE »

Perfect Weather Now on Tap in Texas

Perfect Weather Now on Tap in Texas

Amistad is one of south Texas’ most famous reservoirs – the other being Falcon. Though it’s not the juggernaut that it was in the not too distant past, Amistad is still an incredible tournament fishery, with room to spread out and plenty of grass and rocky structure to target for big giant wintertime bass. READ MORE »

Here Comes Fall in the Ozarks

Here Comes Fall in the Ozarks

Mother Nature will deliver a big part of the story this week as the 2018 Costa FLW Series season comes to a close on Lake of the Ozarks. The tournament, which is presented by Evinrude, will wrap up the Central Division and finalize the field for the 2018 Costa FLW Series Championship scheduled for Nov. 1-3 at Lake Guntersville. READ MORE »

Promising Tides on Tap at the Cal Delta

Promising Tides on Tap at the Cal Delta

It’s kind of a good news-bad news deal on the California Delta this week as anglers take on this vast and storied fishery for the final event of the Costa FLW Series Western Division. READ MORE »

Summer Not Over at 1000 Islands

Summer Not Over at 1000 Islands

It has been the year of the smallmouth in the Northern Division of the Costa FLW Series this season and the third and final event on the 1000 Islands will certainly showcase that. The event, which is presented by Navionics and hosted by the Clayton Chamber of Commerce, is expected to have big weights especially due to the recent results of the Bassmaster Elite Series event and the Renegade Bass Tour Thousand Islands Open held back in early August. No doubt it’ll take over 20 pounds a day to win, however, conditions aren’t as ideal as anticipated for a major smallie smackdown to happen. READ MORE »

Costa Smallmouth Derby Begins on Erie

Costa Smallmouth Derby Begins on Erie

Stop two in the Costa FLW Series Northern Division got underway under clear skies this morning on Lake Erie out of Buffalo. The event, which drew 169 boats, is presented by Polaris and hosted by Buffalo Niagara Sports Commission. The field features some of the top smallmouth sticks in the Northeast. The big question at game time was not whether anglers would catch plenty of fish, but how many and of what size. READ MORE »

Suggs Cracks 24-6 on Barkley

Suggs Cracks 24-6 on Barkley

Andrew Suggs of Cunningham, Tennessee, caught five bass weighing 24 pounds, 6 ounces, to win Saturday’s T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) LBL Division tournament on Kentucky and Barkley lakes. For his win, Suggs took home $3,945. READ MORE »

High Schoolers Head to Pickwick’s Ledges

High Schoolers Head to Pickwick’s Ledges

At 43,100 surface acres, Pickwick Lake offers lots of fishing area, but when the 2018 TBF/FLW Student Angler Federation High School Fishing National Championship, held in conjunction with the 2018 High School Fishing World Finals, sends 384 teams into competition, even this Tennessee River powerhouse might seem rather small. READ MORE »

Test article

Test article READ MORE »

Game Day on Champlain

Game Day on Champlain

Kicking the season off at Lake Champlain worked great last year, and this year the Costa FLW Series Northern Division is once again getting things rolling on the big Northern lake. Again, there’s a new record field size for the Northern Division with a total of 205 boats. The tournament, which is presented by Power-Pole and hosted by the City of Plattsburgh and the Adirondack Coast Visitors Bureau, should treat anglers and fans to an impressive parade of big smallmouth bass for the next three days. READ MORE »

Ledge Bite Awaits at Barkley and Kentucky

Ledge Bite Awaits at Barkley and Kentucky

Bass anglers of every stripe smile when they think of Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley, the sprawling twin reservoirs that, respectively, mark the lower impoundments on the Tennessee and Cumberland Rivers. All bass anglers, including the field of pros and co-anglers who have converged on Lake Barkley State Park for the Costa FLW Series Central Division tournament hosted by Cadiz-Trigg County Tourism and presented by T-H Marine today through Saturday, know what the big lakes can do. READ MORE »

Diverse Patterns in Play at Clear Lake

Diverse Patterns in Play at Clear Lake

The gem of northern California is set to shine as anglers do their best to unlock Clear Lake’s treasure during the Costa FLW Series Western Division event powered by Evinrude and hosted by Konocti Vista Casino Resort & Marina. With warm and mostly sunny conditions on tap, we’re expecting a diverse event with all spring phases in play. READ MORE »

Central Division Starts on Table Rock

Central Division Starts on Table Rock

Anglers hitting Table Rock for day one of the Costa FLW Series Central Division event presented by Lowrance will roll out into somewhat atypical conditions. Stained water held over from high water in the winter and a cool spring have the fish acting differently than they usually do in late April on the White River impoundment. READ MORE »

Bring ’em Big or Bust at Santee Cooper

Bring ’em Big or Bust at Santee Cooper

The Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division wraps up its season this week on Santee Cooper. READ MORE »

Warm-up Promises Good Things at Grand

Warm-up Promises Good Things at Grand

Widely regarded as Oklahoma’s premier bass fishery, Grand Lake will present plenty of opportunity for anglers fishing this week’s Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division event presented by Ranger and hosted by the City of Grove. The tournament kicked off this morning out of Wolf Creek Park, as 169 pros compete for a top prize that includes a five-figure payday and a new Ranger Z518C boat with a 200-hp Evinrude outboard. Co-anglers will cast for a Ranger Z175 boat with a 90-hp Evinrude outboard and an additional $5,000 if Ranger Cup qualified. READ MORE »

Hackemack Smashes 29-8 on Kentucky

Hackemack Smashes 29-8 on Kentucky

Kane Hackemack of Georgetown, Indiana, caught a five-bass limit Saturday weighing 29 pounds, 8 ounces, to take top honors at the 2018 T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) LBL Division opener on Kentucky and Barkley lakes. Hackemack earned $4,915 for his win. READ MORE »

Top 10 Patterns from Kentucky Lake

Top 10 Patterns from Kentucky Lake

Adjusting to the week’s weather conditions was the foundational element of Chase Serafin and Cody Batterson’s game plan, as the Adrian College duo grabbed the day-one lead at the Yeti College Fishing Open on Kentucky/Barkley Lakes and then raced across the finish line on day two with a dominant winning weight of 50 pounds, 3 ounces. READ MORE »

High Water Challenges College Open Field

High Water Challenges College Open Field

This week’s YETI FLW College Fishing Open on Kentucky Lake could see fish dispersed by flood conditions that have expanded the playing field. When 216 teams from around the country take to this massive Tennessee River reservoir, theirs will be a complicated task with equal measures of great potential and great challenge. READ MORE »

Finally Game Day on Seminole

Finally Game Day on Seminole

After waiting out a canceled day one, the competitors are ready to get the second Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division event of the season underway. Taking place on Lake Seminole and presented by T-H Marine, the event is now a two-day shootout, with the full field fishing Friday and Saturday. READ MORE »

Big times at Sam Rayburn

Big times at Sam Rayburn

The first event of the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division on Lake Sam Rayburn presented by YETI and hosted by the Jasper-Lake Sam Rayburn Area Chamber of Commerce kicked off this morning out of the Umphrey Family Pavilion Park. READ MORE »