MANNING, S.C. (May 2, 2009) Pro Mark Hutson of Moncks Corner, S.C., caught four bass weighing 15 pounds, 7 ounces Saturday to win the Stren Series Southeast Division tournament on Santee Cooper…
MANNING, S.C. (May 2, 2009) Pro Mark Hutson of Moncks Corner, S.C., caught four bass weighing 15 pounds, 7 ounces Saturday to win the Stren Series Southeast Division tournament on Santee Cooper with a three-day total of 13 bass weighing 49-13. For his victory, Hutson earned $21,336 cash.
What a day, Hutson said. I caught the big one on my first pitch this morning. I hooked her probably 30 yards from the boat in lily pads on 10-pound braid. I had to go to her. She bogged down and I got to her, and she was still there and we got her in the net. I caught a five-pounder two or three casts after that. After that, it was one here and one there.
Hutson said he caught bedding fish early in the week on a Zoom Speed Craw, but caught his fish on the final day of competition on a soft plastic stickbait.
I really hunted the first two days for fish, Hutson said. The fish I had in practice were either caught or gone. It was a struggle.
I didnt have but one area this morning where I saw a few bedding bass, but my non-boater said he was on some fish and I decided to go with that due to the weather pattern we had, Hutson added. It was windy, and I didnt think I would be able to see my fish at the depth that they were.
Hutson said a contributing factor that led to his victory wasnt a location or bait, but another piece of equipment on his boat.
My Power-Pole was (key) to how I landed my fish today because they would get tied up in lily pads and all I could do was put the trolling motor on high and run to them and slam the Power-Pole down to stop me right on top of them, Hutson said. Without that, I might have gone on past them and they might have gotten off.
Hutson opened the tournament in second place Thursday with five bass weighing 21-3. He then caught four bass weighing 13-3 Friday to make the crucial top-10 cut in first place.
Rounding out the top five pros are Cecil Wolf of Hanahan, S.C. (13 bass, 45-7, $8,535); Ken Ellis of Bowman, S.C. (15 bass, 45-2, $6,828); Norm Attaway of Clearwater, S.C. (13 bass, 44-13, $5,974); and Chuck Howard of Elloree, S.C. (15 bass, 44-9, $5,121).
Eddie Melton of Charleston, S.C., caught the biggest bass of the tournament in the Pro Division Thursday a 9-pound, 1-ounce bass that earned him the days big bass award of $357.
Shawn Malcom of Monroe, Ga., won the Co-angler Division and a 177TR Ranger boat and trailer, with a three-day total of 13 bass weighing 34-13.
Malcom caught five bass weighing 12-6 Thursday while fishing with pro Alan Rae of Columbia, S.C., to open the tournament in fourth place. On Friday he added five more bass weighing 17-6 to make the top 10 cut in first place while fishing with pro Wayne Clifton of Moncks Corner, S.C. Finally, on Saturday, he sealed the win with three bass weighing 5-1 while fishing with Hutson.
Rounding out the top five co-anglers are Donald Miller of High Point, N.C. (nine bass, 24-15, $3,504); Jamie Bladow of Houston, Ala. (six bass, 24-8, $2,628); Larry Breckenridge of Dothan, Ala. (nine bass, 22-3, $2,190); and Ron Buck of Port Saint Lucie, Fla. (eight bass, 19-0, $1,971).
David Olinger of Pikeville, Tenn., caught the biggest bass of the tournament in the Co-angler Division Thursday a 7-pound, 6-ounce bass that earned him the days big bass award of $179.
The next Stren Series Southeast Division event, hosted by the Decatur-Morgan County Convention & Visitor’s Bureau, will be held June 4-6 on Wheeler Lake in Decatur, Ala. Boats will launch from Ingalls Harbor in Decatur, and the final weigh-in will be held at the Wal-Mart located at 2800 Spring Ave. SW in Decatur.
After four qualifying events are complete in each Stren Series division Central, Northern, Southeast, Texas and Western the top 40 pros and 40 co-anglers based on the points standings from each division will advance to the Stren Series Championship on Pickwick Lake in Florence, Ala., Nov. 5-7 for a shot at $150,000 in the Pro Division and $60,000 in the Co-angler Division. The top 10 pros and 10 co-anglers from each division will also qualify for the 2010 Walmart FLW Tour® and Walmart FLW Series®, bass fishings top professional circuits. The highest-finishing pro and co-angler from each division at the Stren Series Championship will also qualify for the $2.5 million 2010 Forrest Wood Cup, where anglers will compete for the $1 million grand prize the most lucrative award in bass fishing
In Stren Series competition, pros supply the boats, fish from the front deck against other pros and control boat movement. Co-anglers fish from the back deck and compete against other co-anglers. Every angler who receives weight credit in a tournament earns points that determine angler standings. Two hundred points are awarded to the winner, 199 points for second, 198 points for third, and so on. The full field competes on days one, two and three, with the top 10 pros and 10 co-anglers advancing to day four based on their three-day accumulated weight. Winners are determined by the heaviest accumulated weight from all four days.
Total awards are based on a full field of 200 boats in every tournament.
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