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News from the Weekend Bass Series
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2014-03-06 10:52:21

South Carolina anglers to fish Lake Russell

ATHENS, Ala. – The South Carolina Division 9 of the American Bass Anglers Weekend Bass Series will hold its second tournament of the season March 22, 2014, on Lake Russell.

The tournament will run out of the Highway 72 Ramp between Calhoun Falls, S.C. and Elberton, Ga. Anglers may begin fishing at 7:15 a.m. or safe light. The public weigh-in will begin at 3:15 p.m. Registration begins at 4 p.m. March 21. To register for this tournament, see www.americanbassanglers.com/proddetail.php?prod=804.

To enter, anglers fishing the Boater Division pay $200 with co-anglers paying $100. In addition, ABA members enjoy these other these other benefits:

- No more dual membership to fish the Weekend Bass Series.
- No more credit card processing fees for tournament entries.
- Liability insurance requirements have been reduced to an acceptable level for weekend anglers.
- Increased payback at divisional events from 20 percent of the field to 25 percent of the field.

Anglers fishing the Boater Division may weigh in up to five bass, each at least 12 inches long. Co-anglers may weigh in up to three bass. Anglers may fish the lake with either a South Carolina or a Georgia license. For a South Carolina fishing license, call 866-714-3611 or see www.dnr.sc.gov. For Georgia fishing license information, see www.georgiawildlife.com/licenses-permits-passes#Recreational_Licenses_and_Passes or call 800-366-2661.

In addition to cash prizes for top finishers, boater and co-angler competitors fishing this tournament and WBS events throughout the season may also win hefty bonuses from such sponsors as Triton Boats, Mercury Outboards, Royal Purple, MotorGuide and T-H Marine. See the manufacturer web sites for specific details on how to qualify for these bonuses.

At the end of the season, the best WBS anglers from across the nation will fish the 2014 Ray Scott Championship, slated for Wheeler Lake in Decatur, Ala., from Nov. 15-18. The champion boater will receive $100,000 and possibly up to $50,000 in Triton Gold Bonus money. The co-angler champion will win $50,000 and possibly up to $25,000 in Triton Gold Bonus money.

As a special Ray Scott Championship bonus, the Boater Division and Co-Angler Division champions will each receive entry fees and sponsorship into the one of two professional bass fishing series of the angler’s choice. The sponsorship includes entry fees into three professional events and sponsorship support. This sponsorship will put the champion within striking distance of one of two professional bass fishing championships.

Named for Richard B. Russell, Jr., a former U.S. senator from Georgia, the lake covers 26,650 acres on the Savannah River in northeastern Georgia and northwestern South Carolina. The lake dates to about 1984 with the opening of the Richard B. Russell Dam. Since the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers controls the lake, very little development exists along its pristine shorelines. The lake offers anglers 540 miles of shoreline.

Lake Russell contains good populations of largemouth and Kentucky spotted bass. Spotted bass average about one to two pounds, but anglers may catch some in the 3- to 4-pound range. Largemouth bass typically run in the 2- to 4-pound range, but the lake can produce some 8-pound and larger fish.

As a fairly new lake, Russell also contains abundant standing timber and stumps. Work spinnerbaits, topwaters or soft plastics around this structure. Run crankbaits off points and deeper banks as the day progresses. Flukes and other soft plastics that mimic shad can also work. With an abundance of perch and blueback herring in the lake, use colors that mimic those fish.

During the 2013 American Fishing Tour Divisional Angler of the Year Fish-Off, Art Vitale of Kenilworth, N.J., won with five bass weighing 10.21 pounds. Vitale fished blowdowns in one to five feet of water with a Texas-rigged green pumpkin Damiki Sneak Worm mated to a 3/16-ounce tungsten sinker. He also caught some bass on chartreuse and white spinnerbaits, but the soft plastics produced bigger fish.

For more information on this tournament, call Billy Benedetti, tournament manager, at 256-230-5632 or ABA at 256-232-0406. On line, see www.americanbassanglers.com.

About American Bass Anglers: American Bass Anglers is committed to providing 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, the Weekend Bass Series, the American Fishing Tour or the American Couples Series, visit www.americanbassanglers.com.

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