Baumgardner takes victory at High Rock
LEXINGTON, N.C. – Chris D. Baumgardner won the Boater Division in the American Bass Anglers Open Series, Presented by Caymas Boats, North Carolina Division 5, third tournament of the season, held May 7, 2023, at High Rock Lake.
Launching at the Southmont access ramp in Lexington, N.C., Baumgardner from Gastonia brought in a 5-bass tournament limit weighing 20.55 pounds, the only angler to break the 20-pound mark. He sealed the victory with a 5.01-pound kicker to finish with a 4.11-pound average.
“I caught six fish all day,” Baumgardner recalled. “I caught them all in the morning at a shad spawn. Then, they quit. I caught some on a worm and some on a frog.”
In second among the boaters, Robert R. Mixon of Lexington also landed his 5-bass limit. He brought in 18.73 pounds with a 4.76-pound kicker.
“I caught eight keepers, all on a spinnerbait,” Mixon revealed. “I was fishing in five feet of water or less around rocks.”
Just behind in third for the boaters, Chris Goodwin from Charlotte brought in a 5-bass limit for 18.26 pounds. He capped that catch with a 5.16-pounder that took the division big bass title.
“I caught the big bass on a ChatterBait,” Goodwin divulged. “I caught everything else on a variety of baits. I caught fish on shaky heads, wacky rigs and Texas rigs. I caught eight bass in all and culled, but only picked up fractions of an ounce each time.”
Finishing fourth for the boaters, Michael D. Stephens from Gastonia landed five keepers at 18.12 pounds. Rounding out the Top 5 boaters, Rick J. Bradford of Hoffman found a 5-bass limit for 14.33 pounds.
In the Co-Angler Division, Bud Risner of Albemarle landed two bass to win with 8.69 pounds. That gave him a 4.35-pound average. Upping his average, one of his bass weighed 5.22 pounds. The other came in at 3.46 pounds.
“I only caught two fish all day on a little green pumpkin worm,” Risner explained. “I caught one bass on that worm and then put a new worm on the hook. I didn’t get another bite for three hours so I put the old worm back on and caught another bass in 10 minutes. That was the only two bites I had all day.”
In second for the co-anglers, Neil G. Sheehan from Charlotte also found two good keepers. He finished with 7.41 pounds, topped by a 4.68-pound kicker.
“I fished a spinnerbait around laydowns in the wind,” Sheehan said.
Timothy D. Pass of Belmont finished third for the co-anglers. He brought in a 3-bass division limit weighing 6.87 pounds.
“I caught my first fish at 6:30 a.m. on an Evergreen SB topwater bait in blueback herring color,” Pass advised. “I caught two more on a shaky head. Those were the only three I caught all day. I fished around rocks and laydowns.”
In the fourth spot for the co-anglers, Willard M. Taylor lll of Newton only found one good keeper bass, but he made it count. That one bucketmouth weighed 6.23 pounds, putting Taylor in fourth place overall, but atop the tournament lunker ladder.
“I caught that big bass on a Texas rig around a rock,” Taylor said.
Doug S. File from Salisbury finished in fifth place for the co-anglers. He brought in two keepers for 5.30 pounds.
The division concludes the regular season at Lake Wylie on June 3, 2023. That event will run out of the South Point ramp, located at 100 Boat Launch Road in Belmont, N.C.
American Bass Anglers is sponsored by Caymas Boats, Mercury Marine, MotorGuide, T-H Marine, Power Pole, RT Outdoors, Optima Batteries, Hotel Planner.com and LurePartsOnline.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, offering each competitor an upward path for individual angler progression.
For more information about American Bass Anglers, the Open Series, the American Fishing Tour, the American Couples Series, the annual Military Team Bass Tournament, and the Top 150 Solo Tour, all presented by Caymas Boats, visit www.americanbassanglers.com or call (256) 232-0406.
This story was written by ABA staff writer John N. Felsher. To submit articles of interest email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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