BENTON, Ky. (May 9, 2009) Pro Mike Ward of Paris, Tenn., caught a five-bass limit weighing 19 pounds, 15 ounces Saturday to edge past Kentucky Lake veteran David Young of Mayfield, Ky., and win his second
BENTON, Ky. (May 9, 2009) Pro Mike Ward of Paris, Tenn., caught a five-bass limit weighing 19 pounds, 15 ounces Saturday to edge past Kentucky Lake veteran David Young of Mayfield, Ky., and win his second straight Stren Series Central Division title on Kentucky Lake with a three-day total of 15 bass weighing 57 pounds, 8 ounces. For his victory Ward earned $25,000 cash and a fully rigged Ranger 198VX bass boat.
There was a shad spawn going on with the water being up and a little bit cool, said Ward, who also won the 2008 Stren Series stop on Kentucky Lake. I believe that positioned the larger ones where I was fishing.
Ward opened the tournament in ninth place Thursday with five bass weighing 19-15. He then caught five bass weighing 17-10 Friday to make the crucial top-10 cut in second place with a two-day total of 10 bass weighing 37-09. Entering the final day of competition in the No. 2 spot was critically important, as it turned out to be the tiebreaker that pushed Ward ahead of Young, who also finished with 15 bass weighing 57-08 but advanced to the final round in the No. 3 spot. Young, who has earned 29 top-10s on Kentucky Lake, received $10,000.
Rounding out the top five pros were Cary Bever of Rhinelander, Wis. (15 bass, 54-09, $8,000); Tommy Ellis of Paris, Tenn. (15 bass, 54-03, $7,000); and Craig Powers of Rockwood, Tenn. (15 bass, 53-15, $6,000).
Ward caught his winning limit Saturday flipping a Strike King Rodent into flooded buck brush.
The texture of the rodent is real soft, Ward said, and because its so soft and the coffee scent it has, I thought the fish would hold onto it longer and give me more time to react.
This was Wards 14th top-10 finish on Kentucky Lake.
Luke Smith of Eddyville, Ky., caught the biggest bass of the tournament an 8-pounder that earned him the days Folgers Big Bass award of $450 in the Pro Division Friday.
Brian Somrek of Calvert City, Ky., won the Co-angler Division and a fully rigged Ranger 177TR bass boat with a three-day total of 15 bass weighing 43-10.
Somrek caught five bass weighing 18-01 Thursday while fishing with pro Keith Himes of Lyles, Tenn., to open the tournament in first place. On Friday he added five more bass weighing 14-12 to make the top-10 cut in first place while fishing with pro Larry Frasier of Owensboro, Ky. Finally, on Saturday, he sealed the win with five bass weighing 10-13 while fishing with Ellis.
Somrek caught his winning limit Saturday throwing a Rat-L-Trap and a homemade jig.
Rounding out the top five co-anglers were Brian Futch of Goreville, Ill. (13 bass, 41-02, $4,000); Kyle Weisenburger of Findlay, Ohio (11 bass, 39-13, $3,000); Logan Fulks of Hendersonville, Tenn. (11 bass, 38-01, $2,500); and Dennis Marcinek of Chicago (11 bass, 33-13, $2,000).
Bill Coffey of Union City, Tenn., caught the biggest bass of the tournament in the Co-angler Division Friday a 6-pound, 13-ounce bass that earned him the days Folgers Big Bass award of $225.
The next Stren Series Central Division event, hosted by Wayne County Parks, will be held July 23-25 on the Detroit River in Trenton, Mich. Boats will launch from Elizabeth Park Marina in Trenton, and the final weigh-in will be held at the Walmart located at 23800 Allen Road in Woodhaven.
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 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 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 and two, with the top 10 pros and 10 co-anglers advancing to day three based on their two-day accumulated weight. Winners are determined by the heaviest accumulated weight from all three days.
Total awards are based on a 200-boat field in every tournament.
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