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Date: April 10, 2010
Region: 2010 Central Region
Tournament: Lake LBJ
Tournament Trail: 2010 Bass Champs Tournament Trail
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Schwertner & Ridley win $21,000 in Bass Champs Central #3 on LBJ
By: Patty Lenderman

Spring is in the air and with it the opportunities to ambush big bass and winning huge purses with Bass Champs tournament trail. Over $48,000 was at steak for the top line up at Lake LBJ for Bass Champs Central Region anglers April 10, 2010. There were 180 teams at this 3rd event for the Central region, and Schwertner & Ridley topped them all by nearly a three pound margin. In addition to the $21,000 check, they also set a new record for the heaviest 5 fish bag ever weighed in during a Bass Champs event on Lake LBJ.

David Schwertner & David Ridley III had done some scouting on LBJ two weeks before the tournament. “We found some during practice in the mid lake area. At that point they were hitting moving baits, like spinnerbaits and other things. Today, that wasn’t working.” The duo aimed for several different pockets to fish in, but noticed everyone seemed to be heading to the backs of them. “We decided to stay in front, just outside the pockets throwing plastics. We had to slow down our fishing a little from practice.” By 9:30 they wrapped up a limit that consisted of smaller bass except for one - a double digit bass weighing 10.08 lbs! “It is the biggest bass I’ve ever caught!” stated Ridley. “I almost hugged Dave for netting her. It was great.” The team fished in 4’ or less water all day, and caught most of their fish on a floating lizard. “It was a matter of throwing the right bait in the right place at the right time and letting it sit.” The bass they caught just kept getting bigger throughout the day, with the exception of their kicker. “At 12:30 we started catching some 5’s and 6’s, and we just kept clicking right along to our last 6# at 2:20. We were blessed. Everything went just right and we had a really fun day.” Their total weight was 25.42 lbs, winning 1st place and the guaranteed $20,000 purse. In addition, they were presented with a $1,000 check for catching the biggest bass of the day. “We’d really like to thank our families for supporting our fishing efforts. They take care of everything at home while we’re out here and we appreciate them.” They would also like to thank Lovett & Associates, Allen Samuels Dodge Chrysler of Waco, Secret Chef, ABS Pool Supply, Fitzgerald landscaping, American Rodsmiths, Airport Auto Sales of Killeen and Allstar Auto Insurance of Killeen for their support.

22.82 lbs won 2nd place, caught by Andy Whitehead and Joe Hale. “We headed to a main lake grass bed on a point. We tried fishing it for a while, but didn’t catch any fish.” Heading straight across the lake to another grass bed, they managed but three keepers. “The pattern we were fishing was right, we just had to find the right bed. I knew of another spot just like these up the lake, so we headed up there.” Problem. Another boat was already on it. “We waited until he left, then we moved over to it.” One of the keys to their target areas was that it had to be wind blown grassy points. Sitting in 3’, throwing to 1 ½’ they used swim baits and weighted flukes. “As soon as we got there it went like gangbusters!” Whitehead exclaimed. “We loaded up in 30 minutes, and culled everything we had already caught. I’ve heard of guys talking about things like this at weigh ins, but didn’t believe them. Now it has happened to us – and I believe it now!” The team won $3,000 for 2nd place. “I’d like to thank Teresa Stevens for the lucky breakfast taco’s!”

Harold Moore and Scott David brought in the last sack registering over 20 lbs to win 3rd place. “We’ve been out of the tournament circuits for a while now, taking care of families and work,” Moore explained. “We were looking for something to fish. Bass Champs runs a great circuit, so we looked into where they would be this weekend.” Finding out it was going to be on LBJ, Scott suggested that Harold go check out the lake a week before. “I went, and found some on beds. That’s Scott’s specialty. We decided to fish.” Baited with craw worms, they hit the beds and went site fishing. “Our only intention was to win. We bypassed anything less than 3 pounds.” By 8:45 they had a 16-17# limit in the boat, and before the end of the day culled four times, until they had a 20.82 lb sack in the boat. Bass Champs presented them with $2,000 for their 3rd place finish.

There were 25 places paid this event, with the bottom being tied by Randy Sitz / Jerod Shelton and Charles Reagan / Lowell Bennett, each having 13.72 lbs.

Each region fishes a total of five championship qualifying events. Points are accrued in each tournament for every team. The team with the most points at the end of the five events in that region is awarded Angler of the Year status. This takes a lot of hard work and fishing consistency, and the reward is to have all entry fees waived for that team in that region the following year. As of this event the top 5 teams by points are:
547 Dean Alexander & Eric Crumley
530 James Hester & Chet Sutton
515 Charles Reagan & Lowell Bennett
513 Damon Ross & Scott Ross
503 Trey Groce & Gary Groce

Central Region event #4 will be held on Lake Travis May 8, then wrap up the season June 12 on Lake Belton. In the mean time, Bass Champs will be heading to Lake Ray Roberts April 17 for North Region #3.

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