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Morris & Hatcher win big on Tawakoni with over 22 lbs at Bass Champs
By: Patty Lenderman

Bass Champs headed to Lake Tawakoni for their March 10th tournament. This was the second event for the North Region, and 212 teams participated. Anglers enjoyed big payouts and grabbed several sponsor incentives. Brad Morris and Kevin Hatcher topped the field with 22.66 pounds. The top 10 weights were separated by mere 100ths of ounces. The total payback in cash and prizes was $51,750.

Weather wise it was a terrific day to be out fishing. Mild temperatures in the 70's, calm wind and mostly sunny skies. The bass are moving into the shallows looking for spawning grounds, but the lake is about 8' low. Locating areas in these low level conditions that were holding bass proved to be difficult for many teams.

Winners Brad Morris and Kevin Hatcher brought in five fish weighing 22.66 lbs, more than two and a half pounds ahead of second place to take the win and a $20,000 check. “We had found some staging bass pre-fishing. On Saturday, we went after them throwing rattle traps, but by 9:30 had only caught a couple of two pounders. At that point, we decided to try some spots we had caught fish in the past. We watched some other guys fish a spot for a while, and when they moved off we fished their and caught our third fish, a five pounder” Brad explained. They had changed tactics, throwing a chartreuse/white spinnerbait and a shaky head finesse worm. “This area had a hard clay bottom with rocks. We were fishing from the banks out to about 8'. I think the hard bottom heated up faster, and that probably helped.” Between 10:00-12:00 they had 21 pounds in the boat. “Kevin was throwing a spinnerbait, and he saw nice one strike at it and miss. I turned the boat around and threw back in there with my worm and caught her. She weighed 6.54 lbs.” That last cull pushed their weight past the 22 pound mark to win 1st place. They also won $2,000 in Fun n Sun Certificates for a total win of $22,000.

Allen Shelton and Scott Dean won 2nd place with 20.08 lbs. “We didn’t get to practice, so when we took off we just went into the first pocket we came to.” They started throwing a ½ oz double willow chartreuse & white spinnerbait next to the banks in shallow water. “Right away we started catching fish. We just caught fish after fish after fish.” The spots they were fishing were where the vegetation on the banks had grown up, and were now flooded. “It looked like hay. We lucked on to a pattern pretty quick, catching them in 6" to 1'.” They had a limit by 8:00 that weighed about 16 pounds. “We were able to cull a few times, but out of the 30-35 keepers we put in the boat, almost all of them were about the same size. It got kind of crowded in that pocket with other boaters. We had been the first to get in there, and we went all the way to the back. As the day went on, several other boaters came in there.” They won $5,000 for 2nd place, doubled that win with another $5,000 Skeeter Bonus, received the Allen Samuels Dodge bonus for $2,000, another $500 from Fun n Sun and finally $1,000 from LineX. Their winnings totaled $13,500.

Michael Wohl and Marshall Miller won 3rd place with 19.88 lbs. “We went to a pocket and threw Texas rigged junebug brush hogs shallow, in about 2' of water. The first fish we put in the boat weighed 5.74 lbs. The fish were biting real good, we were culling by 8:15. We didn’t have to move around much, we only hit two spots.” They held second place for a while at the weigh in, but ultimately took 3rd for a $3,000 win plus another $1,000 in Fun n Sun Certificates.

The Big Bass award went to Alan Perrin for his 7.78 pound bass. “She bit around noon. I caught her on a Texas rigged Berkley green pumpkin lizard. She was in 5' of water right next to a lay-down.” Alan received $1,000 for his Big Bass, and finished 28th place overall for another $500 check.

Rounding out the top 10:
4th $2,000 18.04 lbs Rick Helmcamp & Gene Lathrop
5th $1,200 16.88 lbs Chris Robinson & Craig Cumby
6th $1,090 16.70 lbs Jason Jones & Brian Branum
7th $1,080 16.58 lbs Daniel Trevino & Phillip Crouch
8th $1,070 16.46 lbs Charles Reagan & Stevie Joe Smith
9th $1,060 16.38 lbs Wesley Burnett & Paul Goddard
10th $1,050 16.34 lbs David Miller & Scott Heggan
........and last in the money........
29th $ 500 12.72 lbs Ryan Autrey

The next Bass Champs North Region tournament will be April 14th at Lake Lewisville out of Highland Village. Mark your calendars! The 1st Annual Dodge Mega Bass tournament is being held on Sam Rayburn July 29th. It is an hourly big bass tournament, with 10 places being paid each hour. Eight Dodge Trucks will be given away, as the top prize for each hour. This is the worlds richest one day hourly Big Bass Tournament ever. The entry is only $140 per person. Want to know more? Click to www.basschamps.com or call 817-439-3274.

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