Crowder wins big on James River
ATHENS, Ala. – Kermit C. Crowder took the title for the northeastern anglers after winning the two-day 2013 Toyota Bassmaster Weekend Series Northeast Regional Championship, held Oct. 11-12 on the James River.
Running out of Chickahominy Riverfront Park in Williamsburg, Va., the Petersburg, Va., angler won the last qualifying event of the season with eight bass weighing 28.72 pounds. Crowder landed the largest bag each day of the tournament.
On the first day, he led with three bass weighing 13.99 pounds including a 6.47-pound kicker. He followed that with a 14.73-pound effort on the second day, the largest single-day bag caught in the tournament. The Day 2 bag included a 6.65-pounder. For the Boater Division victory, Crowder took home a check for $7,719, plus a Triton boat and Mercury outboard package worth about $30,000.
“I didn’t even practice before the tournament because the weather was so bad,” Crowder explained. “On Day 1, I caught two fish on a frog and one on a swim jig. I had more fish roll on the frog, but not take it. On Day 2, the bass would not eat the frog at all. I didn’t have a fish until 10 a.m. when I caught my biggest bass on a Pop-R. I caught more on a Pop-R and some on a swim jig. I only caught five keepers.”
As the highest finishing Royal Purple Royal Rewards participant boater in the event, Crowder also won a valuable prize package from Royal Purple. As a Royal Purple Level 1 participant, he won a gallon of Royal Purple oil, a Royal Purple hat, an ABA membership renewal and a $500 bonus.
In second for the boaters, Sonny Kyle of Chesterfield, Va., landed two consecutive five-bass daily tournament limits going 25.01 pounds. He caught 11.10 pounds on the first day and followed that with 13.91 pounds on the second day.
Michael A Phillips of Clayton, Del., took third for the boaters with a 10-bass tournament limit going 23.44 pounds. He brought in 10.17 pounds on the first day and 13.27 pounds on the second day.
Finishing fourth for the boaters, Christiana D. Bradley of Bealeton, Va., caught nine keeper bass going 22.62 pounds with a 4.12-pound kicker. She caught 11.11 pounds on Day 1 and another 11.51 pounds on the second day.
Cavin Young of Prince George, Va., rounded out the top five boaters with 10 bass at 22.60 pounds. He caught weights of 8.68 and 13.92 pounds. On the first day, Dennis McNeal of Stafford, Va., landed the Boater Division lunker, an 8.35-pounder.
In the Co-Angler Division, Travis Garrett of Charlottesville, Va., won with five bass going 19.98 pounds. On Day 1, he led with three bass and 13.83 pounds. He capped his catch on Day 1 with an 8.37-pound kicker to win the tournament big bass contest. On the second day, he sealed his victory with a 6.15-pound bag. For the win, Garrett pocketed a check for $3,869 plus a Triton boat package worth about $15,000.
“I’ve never bass fished on the James or the Chickahominy River before this year,” Garrett revealed. “We found come good fish on the creeks off the Chickahominy and caught them on frogs. I caught three keepers that day and two small fish. I had a limit by 9 a.m. On Day 2, my partner was not on fish, so we went back to where I fished on the first day. I only caught two keepers including a 5-pounder, but quite a few of them got off.”
Taking second for the co-anglers, Michael Nelms of Fredericksburg, Va., brought two consecutive three-bass daily division limits for 16.42 pounds. He also held second for the co-anglers on Day 1 with 13.24 pounds. On the second day, Nelms landed 3.18 pounds.
Jonathan B. Marlow of Burke, Va., placed third among the co-anglers with six bass going 13.49 pounds. He landed 4.47 pounds on Day 1 and another 9.02 pounds on the second day.
Landing in fourth place among the co-anglers, George V. Baucom of Charlotte, N.C., came in with five bass weighing 13.35 pounds. Baucom held fifth on Day 1 with 6.89 pounds, but moved up one spot on the final day with a 6.46-pound bag. Robert Wells of Kill Devil Hills, N.C., wrapped up the top five co-anglers with a six-bass tournament limit weighing 13.31 pounds. He made catches of 6.18 and 7.13 pounds.
“The anglers had miserable weather for the tournament with northeast winds, flood tides and rain for six days,” explained Gary Conner, tournament manager. “The conditions, especially the flood tides, made the fish difficult to target. During the tournament, the temperatures were in the mid 70s for both days with moderate winds and rain.”
This event featured a 200-boat field including the top 40 boaters and co-anglers representing the Maryland, New York, North Carolina, Ohio and Virginia divisions. The best anglers from this tournament will compete against the top anglers from three other regional events during the BWS National Championship tournament, set for Nov. 6-9, 2013, on Old Hickory Lake near Hendersonville, Tenn. The Boater Division champion will compete in the 2014 Bassmaster Classic, slated for Feb. 21-23 on Lake Guntersville, Ala.
The Toyota Bassmaster Weekend Series is sponsored by Triton Boats, Mercury Outboards, Royal Purple, Busch Beer, Odyssey, Raymarine, Carlisle, Biobor, Rejuvenade, Simms, TH Marine, Best Western and Livingston Lures.
About American Bass Anglers: American Bass Anglers commitment is to provide low cost, close to home tournaments for the weekend angler and at the same time offer each competitor an upward path for individual angler progression. For more information about American Bass Anglers, visit www.americanbassanglers.com.