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1/15/2018

Fitzgerald Wins Florida South Season Opener on Lake Okeechobee

ATHENS, Ala. –   Trevor Fitzgerald of Belleview, FL won the American Bass Anglers Open Series Florida South tournament, held January 13th on the Lake Okeechobee.  Running out of Roland Martin Marina & Resort in Clewiston, FL Trevor caught five bass weighing 21.50 pounds including a 7.19-pound kicker. For the Boater Division victory, Fitzgerald took home a check for $5000 for his win and an additional $630 for the Big Bass.

“I ran pretty far north and found some fish in some reeds. I was flipping and pitching reeds with a Fitzgerald Fishing 3/4oz Texas jig on a Fitzgerald Fishing Versa 7’6” heavy rod. I caught that seven pounder around 1:00pm. We started catching fish right away with swim jigs and chatter-baits, but the better fish came later in the day on the jig.”  Fitzgerald said.  

In second for the boaters, Gary Milicevic of Labelle, FL landed a five-bass tournament limit going 21.16 pounds. He collected $1050 for the effort.

“I caught fish all day long. Most of my fish came on a speed worm. I had one fish about 8 pounds come off and another about 5 pounds come off, but that’s just the way it goes.”  Milicevic said. 

Robert Branaugh of Malabar, FL took third for the boaters with five bass going 17.07 pounds with a 5.17-pound kicker. He earned $800 for his catch.

“I ran real far north and fished a senko all day. I started to pick-up a flipping-stick, but I kept getting too many bites to put down that senko.” Branaugh said.

Finishing fourth, Dave Sheffield of Davie, FL landed a five-bass limit for 16.65 pounds.  Robert Twiss of Sunrise, FL rounded out the top five boaters with five bass at 16.22 pounds topped by a 4.47-pound kicker.

In the Co-Angler Division, Steven Forssell of Lake Worth, FL won with three bass going 17.06 pounds including an 8.42-pound kicker. He pocketed a check for $1500 for his win and an additional $260 for the Big Bass.

“I was fishing up on the north end of the lake and threw a chatter-bait all day. I lost a 5-pounder that would have helped me. This is my first win and it feels great.”  Forssell said. 

Taking second for the co-anglers, Ernie Johnson of Okeechobee, FL brought in a three-bass division limit weighing 12.79 pounds with a 6.05-pound kicker. He collected $500 for the effort. 

“I caught my fish on a chatter-bait on the south end of the lake. I didn’t lose any fish that would have helped me.”  Johnson said. 

Eric Andrews of Davenport, FL placed third among the co-anglers with three bass going 11.81 pounds. He earned $400 for his catch.

“I was fishing Harney Pond with a chatter-bait all day. The three fish that I weighed were the first three fish I caught. Everything else I caught was small.”  Andrews said. 

In fourth place among the co-anglers, Phillip Ford of Clewiston, FL brought in three bass for 11.67 pounds. Donald Dunnam of Okeechobee, FL finished in fifth place with three bass at 11.01 pounds.

Slated for February 17th, the next tournament will be held on Lake Okeechobee out of Scott Driver Park in Okeechobee, FL. At the end of the season, the best anglers from across the nation advance the 2019 Ray Scott Championship, Location to be announced.

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.ramopenseries.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 Ram Truck Open Series, the American Fishing Tour or the American Couples Series, visit www.americanbassanglers.com.

American Bass Anglers, Inc. is supported by Triton Boats, Mercury Outboards, GEICO, Berkley, Abu Garcia, T-H Marine, Livingston Lures, Best Western Hotels, Maui Jim, Power Pole, Garmin, and SiriusXM Marine Weather. American Bass Anglers, Inc. can be contacted at (256) 232-0406 or by visiting americanbassanglers.com
 

 

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American Fishing Tour Upcoming Events

2018 Upcoming Schedule

       
North Carolina Piedmont 5/19/2018 Gaston
Mississippi Gulf Coast 5/19/2018 Pearl/ Pascagoula
North Central Louisiana 5/19/2018 Ouachita River
New Mexico 5/19/2018 Conchas
South Carolina Northwest 5/19/2018 Russel
Virginia - Western 5/19/2018 Kerr Lake
Texas - Wichita Falls 5/19/2018 Amon Carter
Florida - Seminole 5/19/2018 Seminole
Missouri 5/19/2018 Truman
Southeast North Carolina 5/19/2018 Sutton Lake
Tennessee - West 5/19/2018 Kentucky Lake
Arkansas North 5/19/2018 Greers Ferry
Connecticut 5/19/2018 Lillinonah
Oklahoma 5/19/2018 Grand Lake
Alabama North 5/19/2018 Guntersville
Pennsylvania 5/19/2018 North East River
Oklahoma North 5/19/2018 Sooner Lake
South Carolina - Greenwood 5/20/2018 Clarks Hill
New Mexico 5/20/2018 Conchas
Tennessee Central 5/20/2018 Old Hickory
Florida - St Johns North 5/20/2018 Rodman
Kansas South 5/20/2018 El Dorado
Illinois North 5/20/2018 Cal Sag/Lake Michigan
Florida - Toho 5/20/2018 Toho
Alabama West 5/20/2018 Bankhead
Massachusetts - New England 5/20/2018 Long Pond-Harwich
Massachusetts-Central New England 5/20/2018 Manchaug

Plus Team Tour 2018 Schedule

Alabama

Dates Lake/Info Register
5/20/2018 Wheeler
7/01/2018 Weiss

Tennessee/Kentucky

     
5/13/2018 Old Hickory
9/23/2018 Kentucky

 

 

 

 

American Couples Series

       
Georgia 5/19/2018 West Point
Tennessee Northeast 5/19/2018 Douglas
South Carolina 5/19/2018 Lake Russell
Alabama Central 5/19/2018 Lay Lake
Kentucky 5/20/2018 Kentucky Lake
North Carolina 5/20/2018 TBA
Alabama Central 6/02/2018 Logan Martin
Oklahoma 6/02/2018 Ft Gibson
Kentucky 6/03/2018 Kentucky Lake
Oklahoma 6/03/2018 Ft Gibson
Tennessee Northeast 6/09/2018 Watts Bar
Florida Northwest 6/09/2018 Seminole
South Carolina 6/09/2018 Lake Greenwood
North Carolina 6/10/2018 Lake Hickory
Alabama North 6/16/2018 Guntersville
Georgia 6/23/2018 Sinclair
Tennessee Northeast 6/23/2018 Chickamauga
Alabama North 6/23/2018 Guntersville
Kentucky 6/24/2018 Kentucky Lake

 

Open Series 2018 Upcoming Events

North Carolina 5/19/2018 High Rock
Alabama South 5/19/2018 Jordan
South Texas 5/19/2018 Lake Conroe
Ohio 6/02/2018 St. Mary's
Maryland 6/02/2018 Chesapeake Bay
South Carolina 6/09/2018 Clark's Hill
Georgia 6/09/2018 Oconee
South East Texas 6/09/2018 Sam Rayburn
Alabama North 6/10/2018 Weiss
New York 6/16/2018 Lake Champlain
Alabama South 6/16/2018 Logan Martin
Oklahoma 6/16/2018 Ft Gibson
Tennesee Central 6/16/2018 Old Hickory
Virginia 6/23/2018 Kerr
South Texas 6/23/2018 Lake Conroe
Kentucky 6/23/2018 Kentucky Lake
North Carolina 6/30/2018 Hickory
East Texas 6/30/2018 Lake of the Pines