Thompson Still Leads Bass Fishing League All-American on the Potomac River

Thompson Still Leads Bass Fishing League All-American on the Potomac River Joseph Thompson maintained his lead at the Bass Fishing League (BFL) All-American tournament on the Potomac River

CHARLES COUNTY, Md. (May 31, 2019) – Boater Joseph Thompson of Coatesville, Pennsylvania, maintained his lead at the 36th annual Bass Fishing League (BFL) All-American tournament on the Potomac River Friday with five bass weighing 16 pounds, 2 ounces, bringing his two-day cumulative total to 10 bass weighing 32-10. Thompson will lead the final 10 anglers into Saturday with a 1-pound, 14-ounce advantage over second place angler Doug Ruster of New Palestine, Indiana, who has a two-day total of 10 bass, good for 30-12.


“I had three primary areas that I really counted on fishing today,” said Thompson, who is fishing in his first BFL All-American. “The first spot I really was counting on catching a big fish. I didn’t catch anything, but I noticed that the tide wasn’t moving that well so I wasn’t really alarmed. I called an audible and didn’t go to my other areas because I knew I needed the tide moving and didn’t want to be disappointed.


“I went to a spot I didn’t plan on fishing, but it felt right and it ended up being the big move of the day,” continued Thompson. “I went and fished grass and caught two good fish and that got my day started. From there, I did my run – I kept hitting my three spots all day. I rolled up to my other primary spot, caught some fish and left them hitting so I could hit the other spot while there was still tide moving. I got there and another competitor was on it. I asked him if I could fish it, he told me no, so I said ‘no problem’ and left.”


Thompson said he jumped around from one spot to the next, adding that once he felt he had enough weight to comfortably make it to the final day, he opted to conserve fish and try other things.


“My spots are postspawn transition spots where they are getting ready to move into their summer stuff and they’re just feeding up,” said Thompson. “They’re not hanging out there – if they’re there, they’re going to eat.”


Thompson said his key bait is a green-pumpkin-colored Zoom Brush Hog on a 5/0-sized Gamakatsu hook.


“Tomorrow there should be less pressure from tournament anglers, so I’m pretty sure I’ll probably be able to get on my two primary spots,” said Thompson. “I didn’t get one [keeper] bite on my big fish spot today – not one. I’m definitely going to check it again tomorrow. I might have to run a little more water tomorrow and try a couple other things because these guys are hot on my heels.”


The top 10 boaters advancing to the final day of competition on the Potomac River are:

               1st:          Joseph Thompson, Coatesville, Pa., 10 bass, 32-10      

               2nd:         Doug Ruster, New Palestine, Ind., 10 bass, 30-12          

               3rd:          Moo Bae, West Friendship, Md., 10 bass, 29-13            

               4th:          Brennon McCord, West Frankfort, Ill., 10 bass, 29-8      

               5th:          Troy Morrow, Eastanollee, Ga., 10 bass, 28-9 

               6th:          Bryan New, Belmont, N.C., 10 bass, 28-8       

               7th:          Ronnie Baker, Providence Forge, Va., 10 bass, 28-0     

               8th:          Robert Walser, Lexington, N.C., 10 bass, 27-13             

               9th:          Seth Davis, Harrison, Tenn., 10 bass, 27-10    

               10th:        Chris Martinkovic, Hamilton, Ohio, 10 bass, 27-7    

Overall, there were 220 bass weighing 579 pounds, 4 ounces, caught by 47 boaters Friday. The catch included 39 five-bass limits. Ben Dacey of Chesterfield, Virginia, held the lead in the Co-angler Division with a two-day total of 10 bass weighing 26 pounds, 7 ounces, followed by Zach Barnes of Chickamauga, Georgia, who also has a two-day cumulative total of 10 bass weighing 26 pounds, 7 ounces. Per FLW tie-breaker rules, Dacey earned the top spot due to posting an overall heaver single-day limit during the event.


The final 10 co-anglers are:

               1st:          Ben Dacey, Chesterfield, Va., 10 bass, 15-14, 26-7       

               2nd:         Zach Barnes, Chickamauga, Ga., 10 bass, 26-7            

               3rd:          Michael Bahnweg, Union Dale, Pa., nine bass, 24-1      

               4th:          Jeff Rikard, Leesville, S.C., eight bass, 23-13 

               5th:          Frank Godwin Jr., Bainbridge, Ga., nine bass, 23-1       

               6th:          Levi Crossway, Jacksonville, Fla., nine bass, 22-15       

               7th:          Todd Blakeman, Chatham, Ill., nine bass, 22-13            

               8th:          Tristen Trull, Mt. Holly, N.C., nine bass, 22-3   

               9th:          Willis Kennedy III, Flomaton, Ala., nine bass, 22-3         

               10th:        James Moore Jr., Lampasas, Texas, nine bass, 21-4

Overall, there were 134 bass weighing 318 pounds, 9 ounces, caught by 44 co-anglers Friday. The catch included eight five-bass limits.

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