NEW TAZEWELL, Tenn. (March 20, 2017) – Larry Neal of Piney Flats, Tennessee, weighed a 17-pound, 11-ounce limit of bass to win the first T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Volunteer Division event of 2017on Norris Lake. Neal’s five bass were enough to earn him the top prize of $4,743.
According to tournament reports, Neal caught his fish in the mid-lake area, fishing a hair jig in 20-feet of water.
The top 10 boaters finished the tournament in:
1st: Larry Neal, Piney Flats, Tenn., five bass, 17-11, $4,743
2nd: Frankie Dople, Newcomb, Tenn., five bass, 16-10, $2,082
3rd: Archie Wilson Jr., Corryton, Tenn., five bass, 14-13, $1,587
4th: Bryan Leonard, Blountville, Tenn., five bass, 13-15, $1,071
5th: Jonathan Bowling, Harriman, Tenn., five bass, 13-14, $833
6th: Brandon Brock, Mayking, Ky., five bass, 13-6, $763
7th: Kevin Powers, Unicoi, Tenn., five bass, 12-10, $694
8th: Jordan Card, Knoxville, Tenn., five bass, 12-6, $625
9th: Peter Balishin, Sharps Chapel, Tenn., three bass, 11-15, $555
10th: James Dial, Jacksboro, Tenn., four bass, 11-7, $486
Complete results can be found at FLWFishing.com.
Neal also weighed a 4-pound, 10-ounce bass – the largest of the event – which earned him the day’s Boater Big Bass award of $580.
Darren Kelly of Wartburg, Tennessee, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 10 pounds, 1 ounce to win the Co-angler Division and$2,000.
The top 10 co-anglers were:
1st: Darren Kelly, Wartburg, Tenn., five bass, 10-1, $2,000
2nd: Talmadge Marcum, McKee, Ky., three bass, 9-12, $1,000
3rd: Doug Austin, Bristol, Va., three bass, 9-8, $666
4th: Matthew Speights, Mascot, Tenn., three bass, 6-8, $567
5th: Kibbee McCoy, Morristown, Tenn., two bass, 6-6, $450
6th: Curtis Hall II, Battle Creek, Mich., three bass, 5-11, $367
7th: Jordan McDeerman, Caryville, Tenn., two bass, 5-9, $333
8th: Jose Ramirez, Barbourville, Ky., three bass, 5-5, $300
9th: Doug Adkins, Gray Hawk, Ky., three bass, 5-2, $267
10th: Noah Newport, Knoxville, Tenn., three bass, 5-0, $233
Justin McGaha of Knoxville, Tennessee, caught the biggest bass of the tournament in the Co-angler Division, a fish weighing 3 pounds, 15 ounces. The catch earned him the day’s Co-angler Big Bass award of $135.
The top 45 boaters and co-anglers in the region based on point standings, along with the five winners in each qualifying event, will be entered in the BFL Regional Championship on the James River in Williamsburg, Virginia. Boaters will compete for a top award of a Ranger Z518C with a 200-horsepower Evinrude outboard and $20,000, while co-anglers will fish for a new Ranger Z518C with a 200-horsepower Evinrude outboard.
The 2017 BFL is a 24-division circuit devoted to weekend anglers, with 128 tournaments throughout the season, five qualifying events in each division. The top 45 boaters and co-anglers from each division, along with the five winners of the qualifying events, will advance to one of six regional tournaments where they are competing to finish in the top six, which then qualifies them for one of the longest-running championships in all of competitive bass fishing – the BFL All-American. Top performers in the BFL can move up to the Costa FLW Series or even the FLW Tour.