UPCOMING EVENT: Costa FLW Series - 2019 - Lake Champlain

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

AOY Update: Lake Seminole

AOY Update: Lake Seminole
Terry Bolton

Bryan Thrift’s bomb at the third stop of the FLW Tour on Seminole may ripple through the minds of fans for a while, but the other contenders for Angler of the Year pretty much stayed on fire. In the lead, Terry Bolton banked his second top 10 of the year and padded his lead. Behind him, Scott Martin earned his second top 10 in a row to push him into the runner-up spot as he pursues his second AOY title on Tour.

With Grand Lake and then Cherokee next on the schedule, here’s how the race is shaping up.

Complete standings  

 

579 points – Terry Bolton

Leading the way, Terry Bolton is without a doubt off to the best start of his long career. After winning at Sam Rayburn (his first career Tour win), Bolton made the cut and finished 19th at Toho. At Seminole, the Kentucky pro snuck into the top 10 via tiebreaker and then dropped the biggest bag of the tournament on the final day to move up to 4th and pad his lead over Martin with a few more points. 

After Toho, Bolton led by just four points, but he’s ticked his lead up to 11 points now. That’s not a wide margin, especially this early, but he’s got the potential to keep working on that margin. Known for his prowess with a crankbait and a blade, Grand Lake could set up very well for him. Cherokee seems well within his skillset, and he made the cut when the Tour last hit Chickamauga and Champlain.

 

568 points – Scott Martin

Moving up to second from a third-place tie with Thrift, Martin is in a great position to earn the second AOY of his career. Back-to-back top-10 finishes at Toho and Seminole have him rolling into Grand Lake, but how he’s positioned there is a bit of a mystery. Martin finished 36th in June of 2013 (the last time the Tour stopped there), but the tournament is much earlier in the season this time around. One good indicator might be his success at Beaver Lake – historically, the two have enough similarities that it wouldn’t be out of the question to suggest that Grand is in Martin’s wheelhouse as well.

 

555 points – Joseph Webster

Had Joseph Webster not caught just one fish on day three at Seminole, he may have had a shot to push Bolton for the lead. As is, he’s finished inside the top 30 in every event and earned one top 10 so far. Webster seems primed to do it big this year, but he’s never been to Grand before. Of course, it’s still easy to buy into a Webster AOY run – he’s demonstrated such a variety of skills throughout his short career that nothing seems really outside his abilities.

 

534 points – Billy McCaghren and Miles Burghoff

Sitting 45 points off Bolton and wrapped up in a virtual tie for 4th place are veteran Billy McCaghren and rookie Miles Burghoff. McCaghren has made every top 30 this year, but never closed and made it to the final day. Burghoff missed day three at Toho, but fished on Saturday at Rayburn and Seminole. McCaghren would appear to have a head start at Grand based on his previous Ozark experience and veteran status. Other than Toho, Burghoff hasn’t really had a local advantage anywhere this year, so it’s probably easiest to assume he’ll just keep on doing what he’s doing until he doesn’t.

 

In the wings

Rounding out the top 10 of the AOY race are Buddy Gross, John Cox, Braxton Setzer, Jeremy Lawyer and Tyler Woolcott. Gross and Cox each have tournaments decidedly in their wheelhouse coming up, but Lawyer may be the biggest threat to move up fast. With Grand and Cherokee next up, he’s got a chance to put his Ozark skills to serious use, albeit on fisheries that he doesn’t call home.

 

Polaris FLW Tour Rookie of the Year update

The race for the Polaris FLW Tour Rookie of the Year award is pretty incredible this year. Miles Burghoff is in the top five in points and in the lead. Behind him, Tyler Woolcott is in the top 10 and Ryan Salzman is in the top 15.

Overall, the ROY hunt is very close and very exciting, as you’d expect with more than 30 rookies on Tour. Looking ahead, a lot of rookies lower in the standings have some home cooking coming up, so Burghoff should probably plan to keep crushing if he wants to win that Polaris Sportsman® 570 and the accompanying trophy.

 

Here’s how the top 10 rookies are shaping up in the overall AOY standings:

5. Miles Burghoff – 534 points

10. Tyler Woolcott – 498 points

15. Ryan Salzman – 492 points

27. Jon Englund – 452 points

29. Corey Neece – 449 points

30. Sam George – 447 points

34. Wade Strelic – 438 points

39. Austin Wilson – 431 points

44. Ron Nelson – 442 points

46. Bradford Beavers – 420 points

Complete standings  

Tags: jody-white  post-tournament  2019-03-07-lake-seminole 

Summertime on Champlain

Summertime on Champlain

For three years running now, the Costa FLW Series Northern Division presented by Gajo Baits has kicked off on Lake Champlain. The tournament, which is presented by Polaris, should offer great fishing like usual, but it’s going to be far different than the last two FLW Series tilts on the big Northern lake. READ MORE »

Top 10 Baits from Lake Champlain

Top 10 Baits from Lake Champlain

June is a fantastic month to be on Lake Champlain, as the FLW Tour pros showcased at last week’s season finale, which was presented by T-H Marine. Smallmouths were spawning all over the place, but the winning pattern was catching postspawn largemouths down at Ticonderoga. READ MORE »

Top 10 Patterns from Lake Champlain

Top 10 Patterns from Lake Champlain

Lake Champlain is the kind of fishery that forces pros to make difficult decisions about where to go and what color of bass to target. This time around, in the FLW Tour 2019 finale, which was presented by T-H Marine, on the big Northern fishery, the decision was more interesting because there were spawning smallmouths everywhere up north, but the forecast was favorable for making the long run south to Ticonderoga to catch largemouths. READ MORE »

Nelson Wins ROY

Nelson Wins ROY

Ron Nelson blanked on the first day of his first FLW Tour event. Then he got things on track – so on track that he finished the season ninth overall in the standings and above every other rookie to earn the Polaris FLW Tour Rookie of the Year award. Winning ROY is typically a career-setting accomplishment, and to go with the hardware Nelson will also receive a Polaris Sportsman® 570 ATV. READ MORE »

Exploring Champlain with Strelic

Exploring Champlain with Strelic

Living about as far as possible from Champlain, Wade Strelic is looking to finish his rookie season strong at the FLW Tour finale. Hailing from Alpine, Calif., near San Diego, Strelic is sitting 28th in points and has made the check cut in three out of six events so far – another good derby will lock him in to the FLW Cup. READ MORE »

Nelson Wraps Champlain Practice

Nelson Wraps Champlain Practice

Ron Nelson is easily in the group of favorites in the event and a bonafide Northern expert, so I was eager to hop in the boat for a morning with the smallie snatcher. Champlain isn’t fishing quite like it was the years he won, but Nelson is still guaranteed to have a lot of eyes on him come day one. READ MORE »

Scouting for Smallies with Felix

Scouting for Smallies with Felix

Over the years, a lot of anglers have established impressive records on Lake Champlain, but few have done it as quickly and authoritatively as Austin Felix. READ MORE »

Get to Know Lake Champlain

Get to Know Lake Champlain

Lake Champlain is a giant of a lake. It stretches 100-plus miles from its beginning down south at Whitehall, N.Y., and runs all the way up to the Canadian border between the Green Mountains of Vermont and the Adirondacks in New York. Though the competitors aren’t allowed to venture into Canada, there is still plenty for anglers to break down for the final event of the 2019 FLW Tour season. READ MORE »

High School Championship Top 10 Baits

High School Championship Top 10 Baits

June is typically ledge-fishing season in the Tennessee Valley, especially at Pickwick, but the 2019 High School Fishing National Championship was a more diverse event than most folks might have expected. Patterns ranging from junk-fishing the bank to targeting docks and other shoreline cover to working the main-lake ledges all worked. Here are the baits used by the top 10 teams during the week. READ MORE »

Check-in Time: Buddy Gross

Check-in Time: Buddy Gross

From time to time, FLW checks in with its anglers to find out what they’ve been up to, what they’re listening to, who they’re following and where they’re heading while out on the tournament trail. This week, we caught up with Buddy Gross.  READ MORE »

Check-in Time: David Williams 

Check-in Time: David Williams 

From time to time, FLW checks in with its anglers to find out what they’ve been up to, what they’re listening to, who they’re following and where they’re heading while out on the tournament trail. This week, we caught up with David Williams. READ MORE »

Top 10 Baits from Sam Rayburn

Top 10 Baits from Sam Rayburn

Pros caught fish everywhere from in the middle of flooded jungles of brush to deep main-lake drops. The top finishers pretty much all power fished with soft plastics, crankbaits and frogs. READ MORE »

Review: LIVETARGET Tennessee Craw

Review: LIVETARGET Tennessee Craw

With the number of great crankbaits on the market or discontinued and still in high-demand, new crankbaits have to be pretty good to earn a space in a tacklebox. While I wouldn’t say the LIVETARGET Tennessee Craw is a surefire classic, after a few days of fishing it, I know I’ll be throwing it a lot more. READ MORE »

Top 10 Patterns from Sam Rayburn

Top 10 Patterns from Sam Rayburn

The top 10 fished a little of everything, but mostly stuck to areas within a few miles of the 147 bridge. READ MORE »

2019 Lake Champlain Preview

2019 Lake Champlain Preview

Champlain is such a fun location for a tournament in large part because of the unpredictability involved. Nelson winning last year’s Costa FLW Series tilt with all smallmouths was something of a surprise, but given the conditions, it made plenty of sense. Exactly what will go down this year is legitimately up in the air. READ MORE »

Top 10 Patterns from the National Championship

Top 10 Patterns from the National Championship

Though there was some carryover from the T-H Marine Bass Fishing League (BFL) All-American the week before, the fishing on the Potomac River was a lot better for the anglers in the YETI FLW College Fishing National Championship presented by Lowrance. With better fishing came more robust grass patterns, but plenty of bass (some of the biggest of the event) were caught off hard cover as well. All in all, it was a mixed week of very good fishing on the Potomac. READ MORE »

National Championship Top 10 Baits

National Championship Top 10 Baits

Competitors in the YETI FLW College Fishing National Championship presented by Lowrance undoubtedly took some cues from the top finishers in the T-H Marine Bass Fishing League (BFL) All-American the week before, but they also blazed some new ground. With better fishing overall and a better grass bite, a few more winding baits got mixed into the fray. READ MORE »

Best Hair from the College Championship

Best Hair from the College Championship

Inspired by the Minnesota State High School All Hockey Hair videos, we thought we’d take a little time to break down some of the best hair from this year’s YETI FLW College Fishing National Championship. This article is not meant to criticize the hair the college anglers brought to the Potomac; rather, we want to recognize the unsung heroes and the flair they brought to the tournament. Since the college anglers can compete in the tournament solo or as a pair, we allowed the same rules on our list. READ MORE »

College Championship Midday Update – Day 3

College Championship Midday Update – Day 3

As expected, the fishing has been great for the final day of the YETI FLW College Fishing National Championship presented by Lowrance on the Potomac River. Sunny skies and moderate winds have set everyone up for success, and so far the top 10 teams are making the most of it. READ MORE »

Racers Lock Up National Championship

Racers Lock Up National Championship

The final day of the YETI FLW College Fishing National Championship presented by Lowrance on the Potomac River was quite the show, especially if you watched FLW Live. After catching the biggest limit of the event worth 18 pounds, 14 ounces on day two to take the lead, the Murray State duo of Adam Puckett and Blake Albertson gave it all they had on the final day to squeak out their smallest, yet most important limit of the week. Today, Murray State caught 15-8, which was enough to edge out the Bethel University team of Tristan McCormick and Dakota Pierce by just 3 ounces to bring home the title. Along with winning a Ranger Z175 with a 115-horsepower motor for the club, Puckett and Albertson also get entry into the 2019 FLW Cup on Lake Hamilton in Hot Springs, Ark., this August 9-11. READ MORE »