Moneuse Wins Bass Fishing League Tournament at Lake Toho

February 12, 2024
Bass Fishing League (BFL) News

KISSIMMEE, Fla. (Feb. 12, 2024) – Boater Max Moneuse of Parrish, Florida, caught a five-bass limit weighing 21 pounds, 9 ounces, Saturday to win the MLF Bass Fishing League (BFL) tournament on Lake Toho. The tournament was the second event of the season for the BFL Gator Division. Moneuse earned $4,729 for his victory.

“I made a long run to the south end of the chain of Kissimmee and decided to flip a Gambler Fat Ace Stick Worm around where fish could be spawning,” Moneuse said. “During practice, I was able to put the trolling motor in the water, put the batteries to the test, and cover ground. I fished an area that tends to be a spot that can be good when it has the early spawners.”

Moneuse said he rigged his stick worm with a 3/16-ounce Epic Baits Tungsten Worm Weight and a 6/0 BKK hook. His rig accounted for 20 fish – all keepers – during the tournament. He flipped the rig on a 7-foot, 5-inch medium-heavy plus TFO Taction Bass Series Casting Rod with fluorocarbon line.

Moneuse credited his Hewes flats boat with a 115-horsepower Yamaha outboard as being a key to his success, despite not being the ‘normal’ bass fishing rig.

“I always tell people when they ask why I fish in that boat is that it is better to be out there in what you have than to not go because you think your boat isn’t going to keep up with everyone else’s,” Moneuse said.

The long run paid off when Moneuse found quality fish, but he wasn’t confident heading into weigh-in.

“I honestly didn’t think I had a shot at winning until I got in and saw 16 pounds was leading,” Moneuse said. “The Kissimmee Chain has all those great anglers out there; It’s hard to imagine you're going to win with a weight in the low 20s on that body of water.

“I told my co-angler I thought my weight was good enough for a top-5 finish and a piece of hardware, but I didn’t think low 20s would win it for me,” Moneuse added. “This is pretty awesome. I put a lot of work and time into preparation for any tournament, so getting the chance to win and hold up the big trophy is awesome.”

The top 10 boaters finished the tournament:

                1st:        Max Moneuse, Parrish, Fla., five bass, 21-9, $4,729
                2nd:       Raymond Trudeau, Saint Cloud, Fla., five bass, 17-13, $1,970
                2nd:       Paul Vanzant, Umatilla, Fla., five bass, 17-13, $1,970
                4th:        Tyler Woolcott, Port Orange, Fla., five bass, 16-9, $1,103
                5th:        Dillon McMillan, Vero Beach, Fla., five bass, 16-1, $946
                6th:        Steven Eastman, Eustis, Fla., five bass, 16-0, $867
                7th:        Brady Lunsmann, Citrus Springs, Fla., five bass, 15-6, $788
                8th:        Carson Kamien, Gainesville, Fla., five bass, 15-4, $709
                9th:        Tyler Sheppard, Yulee, Fla., five bass, 15-2, $1,336
                10th:     Dalton Hanger, Frostproof, Fla., five bass, 14-10, $552

Complete results can be found at MajorLeagueFishing.com.

Tyler Sheppard of Yulee, Florida, caught a bass that weighed 8 pounds, 14 ounces, and earned the Berkley Big Bass Boater award of $705.

Brandon Pabon of Deltona, Florida, won the Strike King co-angler division and $2,364 Saturday, after bringing five bass to the scale that totaled 18 pounds, 5 ounces.

The top 10 Strike King co-anglers finished:

                1st:        Brandon Pabon, Deltona, Fla., five bass, 18-5, $2,364
                2nd:       Robert Linthout, Cape Coral, Fla., five bass, 15-2, $1,182
                3rd:       James Sponaugle, Auburndale, Fla., five bass, 14-1, $788
                4th:        Steven Obester, Palatka, Fla., five bass, 13-12, $702
                5th:        William Lewis, Jacksonville, Fla., five bass, 11-9, $473
                6th:        Evan Phillips, Rincon, Ga., five bass, 10-7, $433
                7th:        Sean Ripley, Lakeland, Fla., five bass, 10-5, $374
                7th:        Adam Sangster, Sanford, Fla., five bass, 10-5, $374
                9th:        Randy Paquette, Sarasota, Fla., five bass, 10-3, $315
                10th:     Manuel Gonzalez, Davenport, Fla., five bass, 10-2, $276

Richard Ralston of Saint Could, Florida, earned the Berkley Big Bass co-angler award of $352, catching a bass that weighed in at 8 pounds, 8 ounces – the largest co-angler catch of the day.