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Date: October 3, 2009
Region: 2009 Championships
Tournament: North South Championship
Tournament Trail: 2009 Bass Champs Tournament Trail
StatsResultsBig BassStoryPhotosPoints
Stocker and Stone Win $50,000 Cash with over 58 pounds at North/South Championship on O.H. Ivie
By: Patty Lenderman

The Championship event marks the culmination of all the fishing efforts throughout the year. The North & South Regions of Skeeter Bass Champs 2009 tournament trail battled it out on O.H. Ivie lake October 3-4. $50,000 was guaranteed to the 1st place winner, and Stocker & Stone from the South Region took it home weighing in more than 52 pounds!

There were 380 anglers competing in this two day championship, and Bass Champs doled out over a 347% payback percentage to the top teams. Seven double digit sows were caught and brought to the scales, with the biggest weighing over 13 pounds! The inclement weather posed very little challenge to these anglers vying for a part of over $80,000 in cash that was paid in 26 places.

Saturday, day 1 of the event, the contenders enjoyed partly cloudy skies and no wind, temperatures barely reaching 80 degrees. The teams had been numbered for take-off, and after playing the National Anthem the race was on.

Spike Stoker of Stephenville, TX and Justin Stone from Hamlin, TX of the South Region had a later take-off and did not get to their targeted area until 8:00. “We had found some deep fish while pre-fishing,” Spike explained. It was an area with a drop off from 17’-22’. “We positioned our boat at 24’ and threw up to the 17’ area with jigs, spinnerbaits, and soft plastic jerk baits.” The colors that were working best for us were purple haze and blue gill.” The bite was fast and furious. By 9:00 they had 32 pounds! “At 11:00 we went ahead and weighed in so none of the fish would die.” Spike had caught all of their fish Saturday, putting them in a strong position going into day 2. “We went back to that first spot on Sunday. Within a few minutes, we got broke off on a good one. Then Justin caught two 10 pounders!” They stayed there a few more hours but no more bites, so decided to move to another area. “Our second spot we sat in 47’ and threw to 35’ with frogs. We boated a few keepers there, but only ended up with four total to weigh.” Their two day total was 58.36 lbs, more than 10 pounds over 2nd place! Skeeter Bass Champs presented the team with the guaranteed $50,000 1st place purse. “This is only our second year to fish Bass Champs. We’ll be ready to do it again next year!” They would like to thank Sandy Creek Marina in Breckenridge, Dobbyns Rods and Hags Tornado lures for their support.

Chris Jaynes and Tim Reneau won 2nd place and $5,000. “We struggled Saturday.” The team had no fish in the boat until 12:30. “It took a while to figure out the jig pattern they were on.” Using a 1 ¼ oz jig in the grass, fishing water 8-12 feet deep they found the quality bass they were after. Sunday, they picked right back up with the working pattern to end up with a two day weight of 48.32 lbs!

Rounding out the top 5 teams:
3rd $3,500 45.58 lbs Steve Lynam & Scott Shultz
4th $3,000+ $3000 Skeeter Money 44.24 lbs Jason Gallas & John Gallas
5th $2,000 40.24 lbs Jaime Buitron & Terry Oldham

On Sunday, the cloud cover grew thicker and scattered showers played hit and miss over the lake. It was the right scenario for Jose Jimenez of the South Region to catch the biggest bass of his life.

“My partner (Rene Meza) and I were working a grass bed about 6’-10’ deep,” Jose explained. “We only had a couple of small ones in the boat still around 10:00. I looked around, and saw a solitary clump of grass out by itself and threw a 10” blue fleck Berkley power worm across it. I felt a small bump, but wasn’t sure if it was a fish so I reeled up the slack. It felt heavy, and I could feel it move a little. I told Rene ‘big fish!’, but he didn’t believe me. I had thought I had big fish before, then they turned out to be 3 or 4 pounders. The line started moving, so I put tension on it and the fish just started swimming off! We followed it with the trolling motor, then all of a sudden it turned around and swam under the boat! Rene tried to net it but missed, and it went into the grass. I thought for sure I was going to lose it. I put steady tension on the line and got it to come out. It was hard to get it into the net, it was so big! Then it didn’t fit well in the livewell – kind of curved the tail a little. I had my little Bible with me in my front shirt pocket, and just prayed. I thank God for my fish, it is my biggest ever! I’d also like to thank my wife for supporting me and my fishing.”

The last team to receive a check was Will Welch and John Basinger in 26th place, winning $500.

“This has been a fantastic year,” stated Chad Potts, President of Bass Champs. “Because of all of the participation in each of the regions, we have already paid out over $1.75 million in cash and prizes so far this year. We really want to thank our anglers and sponsors for making this another great season. The 2010 schedules are posted on our website and we’ll be ready to go again in January! Everyone enjoy the hunting season, and holidays with your families. See you next year!”

There are still a few events remaining in 2009:

The Championship for the Central and East Regions will be this weekend, October 10 & 11 at Cedar Creek Lake. Good luck anglers!

The 4th Annual Berkley Big Bass event on Lake Fork will be the following weekend, October 17th & 18th at Lake Fork Marina.

For more information on any Bass Champs event, click to www.BassChamps.com or call 817-439-3274

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