McDowell Wins Bass Fishing League Tournament on Lake ShelbyvilleMcDowell Wins Bass Fishing League Tournament on Lake Shelbyville Garrett McDowell won the Bass Fishing League (BFL) Illini Division tournament on Lake Shelbyville
SHELBYVILLE, Ill. (Sept. 24, 2018) – Boater Garrett McDowell of Mattoon, Illinois, won the Bass Fishing League (BFL) Illini Division tournament on Lake Shelbyville Sunday with a two-day cumulative catch of 10 bass weighing 26 pounds, 3 ounces. McDowell earned $6,540 for his win.
“I went from one end of the lake to the other running the backs of coves in a foot or less of water,” said McDowell, who earned his first win in FLW competition. “The water was pretty clear but my polarized Solar Bat sunglasses were key for me. If you didn’t have sunglasses where you could see the wood on the bottom, I wouldn’t have caught what I did. A lot of the stumps were a foot or more under the water where you just can’t see them without the polarized lenses.”
McDowell said he primarily used a custom white swimjig with a White Pearl-colored Zoom Super Chunk. He also rotated in a ChatterBait with a white Keitech swimbait when he needed to cover more water, and noted that it caught one of his largest fish of the day Saturday.
“I probably hit 12 to 15 coves each day, with stumps and laydowns being the deal,” said McDowell. “I saved my southern coves for Sunday. I thought they held better-quality fish.”
McDowell said he ended up catching about eight keepers each day.
“Making multiple casts to the same target was important. Sometimes I had to cast 10 times to a stump before they’d eat the bait.”
The top 10 boaters finished the tournament in:
1st: Garrett McDowell, Mattoon, Ill., 10 bass, 26-3, $4,540 + $2,000 Ranger Cup Bonus
2nd: Jeremy Mull, Chatham, Ill., 10 bass, 23-5, $2,470
3rd: Brennon McCord, West Frankfort, Ill., 10 bass, 22-7, $1,515
4th: Brian Tschudy, Mascoutah, Ill., nine bass, 20-15, $1,159
5th: Darren Frazier, Anna, Ill., seven bass, 20-13, $908
6th: Michael Black, Toledo, Ill., eight bass, 20-12, $832
7th: Mike McGill, Findlay, Ill., nine bass, 20-4, $757
8th: Dan Morehead, Paducah, Ky., nine bass, 20-1, $981
9th: Andrew Harper, Shelbyville, Ill., eight bass, 19-2, $605
10th: Bobby McMullin, Pevely, Mo., nine bass, 17-15, $530
Nick Koehne of Manteno, Illinois, caught a bass weighing 4 pounds, 12 ounces – the heaviest of the event in the Boater Division. The catch earned him the Boater Big Bass award of $532. Aaron Arning of Walnut Hill, Illinois, caught a two-day total of eight bass weighing 18 pounds, 15 ounces, to win the Co-angler Division and $2,470.
The top 10 co-anglers were:
1st: Aaron Arning, Walnut Hill, Ill., eight bass, 18-15, $2,470
2nd: David Duzan, Oakland, Ill., seven bass, 15-11, $1,135
3rd: Mark Carlock, Hillsboro, Ill., five bass, 12-10, $757
4th: Ryan Murphy, Paris, Ill., six bass, 11-12, $530
5th: Dale Renth, Mascoutah, Ill., seven bass, 11-10, $504
6th: Adrian Lungu, Palos Hills, Ill., five bass, 11-5, $682
7th: Aaron Wehmeyer, Odell, Ill., five bass, 11-0, $378
8th: Austin Sloan, Shelbyville, Ill., four bass, 9-14, $341
9th: Mario Rossi Jr., Granite City, Ill., five bass, 9-10, $303
10th: Shane Campbell, Highland, Ill., four bass, 9-7, $265
Lungu caught the largest bass in the Co-angler Division – a fish weighing 4 pounds, 3 ounces – and earned the Co-angler Big Bass award of $266.
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