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Date: April 4, 2009
Region: 2009 Central Region
Tournament: Lake LBJ
Tournament Trail: 2009 Bass Champs Tournament Trail
StatsResultsBig BassStoryPhotosPoints
Bass Champs sets all time record for attendance on LBJ (209 teams), Bennett and Reagan take home over $20,000 on LBJ with 17.58 lbs.
By: Patty Lenderman

Spring is here, and the spawn is on – but with the sudden cold fronts, coupled with a variety of weather patterns the bass patterns are just as sporadic. When Lowell Bennett and Charles Reagan finished their day with 17.58 lbs, they were just hoping to stay in top 10. They never dreamed they would win 1st place and over $20,000!

Being fairly unfamiliar with Lake LBJ, Bennett & Reagan found an area in practice that they found some quality fish and stayed in that one spot all day instead of the running and gunning they usually do on water they are more familiar with. “The day started out pretty rough for us,” Charles explained. “We didn’t have a single fish in the boat until 10:30.” Their first fish weighed somewhere between 7 and 8 pounds. “That gave us some much needed confidence to stay there.” Using watermelon based senko’s and flukes in shallow grassy areas and man made cuts, they stuck with it. Slowly and methodically they continued to catch a total of 9 keepers to cull from to reach their total weight. “Some other boats would come in there from time to time, then they’d leave again and we’d just go back behind them. We knew the fish were there, it was just a matter of getting them to bite.” This time of year especially, it typically takes more than 20 pounds to win. “We were just hoping for top 10 – did not even consider that we might win!” Bass Champs presented them with the guaranteed 1st place purse of $20,000 plus they also received $200 from SureLife for using the product in their livewell. Lowell would like to thank his sponsors – Power Tackle, Bass Catt, and Lovett & Associates. Charles’ sponsors include Fun N Sun, Legend, Mercury, Stren and American Rodsmith.

Ricky Durmon and Michael Gideon won 2nd place and $5,000 with a 17.12 lb limit. “Our day started out a lot different than anticipated” the duo agreed. “We had a few things and areas in mind, but it didn’t work out for us.” They had gone up river and checked out some spots by big rocky areas. Listening to previous fishing reports, they tried Texas rigs and other soft plastics. After the first hour, they knew they had to change tactics. Moving to another spot, they fished shallow, about 2’-4’ deep. “It was teamwork” Durmon insisted. By 11:30 they wrapped up a limit and didn’t catch any extras. “Thank the Lord we did well.” Gideon stated. “We’d like to thank Bass Champs for putting this circuit on. It gives regular guys who just love to fish an opportunity to win a really good check.”

In 3rd place weighing in 16.44 lbs was the team of Dale Read and Dwayne Kinley. This is the teams’ best finish so far fishing the Central Region. “We planned to fish shallow and it worked out for us.” Staying in one big area most of the day, they caught one off of a bed and the rest inside points and at shallow, wooded docks. They caught their fish on weightless flukes and senko’s in watermelon colors. They won $3,000 for their day on the lake.

Rounding out the top five includes 4th place of Ken and Darren Everett with 15.82 lbs and 5th place Donnie Ross and Kenny Clifton with 14.90. Bass Champs awarded the top 27 teams with a check, and the father & son team of Kenneth Fuller Jr and Kenneth Fuller III caught the last $600 check weighing in 11.24 lbs.

The Big Bass of the tournament was a double digit sow weighing 10.28 lbs. Charles Hice caught this big one and a check for $1,000. “It was about 11:00, and I flipped under this dock with a True Tungston jig trailered with a green pumpkin chigger craw. She just sucked it right in! I played her for two or three minutes, she took some drag. I finally wore her down and netted her.” It was his only keeper of the day but was worth almost $100 per pound! This fish was also the first bass weighed in using the new "Bass Champs Lunker Program". The new program allows anglers to bring in fish over 10 pounds to the scales early.

The Skeeter Double Money bonus went to Paul Vaughn and Hunter Jordan winning 6th place overall.

After the scales closed, the flipping contest had a new twist. Michael Wimberley had made four shots in the "20" bucket, and emcee, Chad Potts, quickly said, "if you make it 5 in a row, I'll give you a $100". Michael flipped his bait, and made it. The crowd cheered. Then, after the final round concluded, Chad had a second bet for Mr. Wimberley. As the crowd watched, Chad made the offer. "I will give you 3 shots at the "50" bucket. If make any of them, I'll give you an extra $400. But, if you miss it all three times, you have to give my $100 back. Mr. Wimberley agreed. The fist shot bounced off the top of the target (it is a small can with about a 3 inch hole in the top). The crowd followed with a loud, "awwwwwww", Chad sighed in relief. The second shot came up short. Before the third shot Chad said, "Ok, Mike, don't get nervous". He didn't. Mike flipped the bait, and without even touching the rim, the bait went straight into the can. The crowd erupted. Chad, was speechless. "Not again!!" he stated.
The Central Region has completed 3 of the 5 events for 2009. Each team accumulates points in each tournament, and the team with the most points at the end of the season will be declared Anglers of the Year. The entry fees for that team will be waived in 2010 for that region.

Top 5 points teams:
651 Lowell Bennett & Charles Reagan
646 Jeff Pitrucha & Scott Dyer
639 Trevor Romans & Leslie Kennedy
633 Matt Hill & Trey Webb
624 Terry Kircus & Jason Buchanan

The next tournament for the Central Region will take place on Lake Belton May 2. Bass Champs staff and crew will be heading to Falcon Lake April 18 for the fourth South Region event.

Bass Champs has paid out well more than a half a MILLION dollars so far in 2009. There’s still a lot more to win!

South Region schedule:
1/17/09 Lake Amistad PAID - $50,750
2/21/09 Lake Amistad PAID - $55,750
3/21/09 Choke Canyon PAID - $50,750
4/18/09 Falcon Lake NEXT – Don’t miss it!
5/16/09 Choke Canyon

East Region schedule:
1/24/09 Sam Rayburn PAID - $71,410
2/28/09 Sam Rayburn PAID - $65,110
3/28/09 Sam Rayburn PAID - $58,350
5/09/09 Toledo Bend
6/13/09 Sam Rayburn

Central Region schedule:
2/07/09 Travis PAID - $60,250
3/07/09 Belton PAID - $62,260
4/04/09 LBJ PAID - $56,250
5/02/09 Belton
6/06/09 Travis

North Region schedule:
2/14/09 Richland Chambers - PAID $51,600
3/14/09 Cedar Creek PAID $68,200
4/25/09 Lake Fork
5/30/09 Lewisville
6/27/09 Tawakoni
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