UPCOMING EVENT: TOYOTA SERIES - 2020 - Lake Cumberland

Howard by Ounces for Co-angler Title

Howard by Ounces for Co-angler Title

Mark Howard toughed it out in a grueling Costa FLW Series on Lake Okeechobee presented by Power-Pole. His three-day cumulative total of 26 pounds, 6 ounces etched out the day-two leader by 9 ounces in a dramatic final weigh-in. The victory earned Howard $2,500 and a new Ranger boat.

A last minute decision sent the Mesquite, Texas, resident over to Florida. Two of his friends were fishing the event and enticed him to sign up.

“I signed up right after Christmas,” says Howard. “There were three co-angler positions left and [the Tournament Director] said he could fit me in.”

Howard spent time practicing for the season opener with both friends.

“Monday was good, Tuesday was tough, and Wednesday was horrible,” laughs Howard.

Howard drew local stick Glenn Browne as his day-one boater. Browne began the day by punching Lake Okeechobee’s matted vegetation.

“Punching is not a strong suit of mine at all,” Howards remarks. “You can count the fish I’ve caught punching mats on one hand.”

Howard started by casting a Z-Man ChatterBait and had four bass within the first 30 minutes of the tournament. However, he noted Browne’s punching prowess and made sure to attempt to learn punching techniques from one of Florida’s best.

Howard and Browne had successful opening days. Howard finished in second with 12-14, while Browne placed in the top 10. The two even hit it off as Glenn invited Howard, who was rooming alone, to eat with him family.

That effort to learn punching paid off on day two. Howard and his day two boater, Dan Iorio, punched mats in the heavy rains.

Howard racked up a limit weighing 10-7 and had him sitting in second place heading into the final day.

When the top 10 was announced Howard and Browne both sat in second place and would again have a chance to fish together.

After a fog delay to start the final round of competition, the two headed back to their first day spot.

“The fog delay hurt us. By the time we got there, [the fish] weren’t acting right. We should have had a limit a piece but it didn’t happen. We had two a piece when we left there.”

Those two fish were enough to overtake the lead and hold off the local Adam Trieschmann.

No he won’t be going to Disney World, but Howard does have a few plans in mind after his win. He’ll be signing up for the rest of the Southeastern Division tournaments, helping his father pay his house taxes, and keeping this momentum going when he returns for the Walmart FLW Tour in February.


Top 10 Co-anglers

1. Mark Howard – Mesquite, Texas – 26-06 (12) – $2,500 and Ranger Z117 w/ 90hp outboard

2. Adam Trieschmann Wellington, Fla. – 25-13 (9) – $7,500

3. Scott Dobson – Clarkston, Mich. – 25-05 (11) – $6,000

4. Billy Charland – Chuluota, Fla. – 25-03 (15) – $4,500

5. Dean Harcourt – Sebastian, Fla. – 24-00 (13) – $4,000

6. Michael Black – Toledo, Ill. – 23-13 (11) – $3,500

7. Ty Solis – Albany, Ga. – 22-08 (11) – $3,000

8. Joseph Solenski – West Palm Beach, Fla. – 21-09 (13) – $2,250

9. Steven Christie – Gray Court, S.C. – 20-07 (12) – $1,700

10. Nik Kayler – Apopka, Fla. – 19-14 (11) – $1,450


Complete results can be found here.

See photos for the final day weigh-in.

Tags: lake-okeechobee  chris-burgan  co-angler-headline  2016-01-14-lake-okeechobee 

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