Vince Smith Takes Win on Lake Keowee
March 25, 2023, Seneca, SC. Vince Smith of Westminster, SC won the American Couples Series South Carolina Division tournament presented by American Bass Anglers. Running out of Mile Creek County Park near Six Mile, SC. Vince chose the Lake Keowee event as their only solo event of the season brought back five bass that locked in the scales at 18.68 pounds anchored by a 5.12-pound kicker. For the victory Vince took home a check for $900.
Vince tells us, “I fished deep early and caught a limit of spots. As soon as I got my limit I went to the bank. I knew fish was steady coming to the bank with the warm weather and the water temps climbing. I started throwing a wake bait and picked up my second biggest of the day right away. Then I caught a few off bed then just started skipping docks with a senko when the sun got up high. I ended up catching a 5 pounder under a dock around 1 o’clock. I spent a lot of my time around cane creek and south cove. That’s where I grew up fishing and that where I feel comfortable with not a lot of practice coming into the tournament. These couple tournaments really give me and my wife a lot of quality time and time to get away from the kids from time to time. All the couples are great and with great directors it makes it easy and fun to fish. Through the couple trail we have met a lot of amazing people and friends for life.”
Second place was claimed by Will and Ashley Price with five bass weighing a total of 14.46 pounds. For their efforts Will and Ashley took home $450 in prize money.
Will states, “We were down on the south end of the lake sight fishing for cruising and bedding bass. Mostly wacky rigging. l hadn’t been to Keowee in 16 years since graduating from Clemson, it was crazy how the lake fished almost identical as it did back then. My wife and I look very much forward to fishing the couples trail, a break from the rigors of children and everyday work grind is great for us. We encourage other couples to give it a try, we are glad we did!”
Craig and Mary Ann Sahms took third with five bass and a total weight of 14.05 to earn $270 in prize money.
Quote from Craig, “We got to our first spot and started catching fish almost immediately. I caught two decent keepers and about five minutes later, Mary Ann caught her big fish. We had a limit in less than an hour, for about 11 lbs. The bite slowed down a bit when it started to clear up, but we still caught fish throughout the day and made a couple of good culls. We caught all of our keepers in the same area on a 1/2-ounce spinnerbait on windy flat banks.”
Zach Waddell and Sophie Gibson finished in fourth with five bass weighing 12.60 pounds and winning $180.
Zach tells us, “We started off the morning really strong catching the two big ones we had and managed to get our limit quick. The day slowed down after the morning until the sun came out. We culled up a few times catching fish around docks and rocks all afternoon. We had a great time on the water and with all the people who fish with us.”
The Men’s Biggest Bass of the tournament was caught by Vince Smith. His fish locked in the scales at 5.12-pounds earning him $120.
The Ladies Biggest Bass of the tournament was caught by Mary Ann Sahms. Her fish locked in the scales at 3.91-pounds earning her $110.
Zach Waddell & Sophie Gibson won the G-Line $100 Bounty for being the highest finisher powering the trolling motor with a G-Line Lithium Battery.
Top 15 Teams PL Angler Fish Big Bass Total Points Payout 1 Vince Smith-Amanda Smith 5 5.12 18.68 200 900 2 Will Price-Ashley Price 5 3.93 14.46 199 450 3 Craig Sahms-Mary Sahms 5 3.20 14.05 198 270 4 Zach Waddell-Sophie Gibson 5 4.62 12.60 197 180 5 Joe Anders-Shianne Parker 5 3.16 12.30 196 6 Thomas Bancroft-Melissa Bancroft 5 3.27 12.16 195 7 Don Goodfellow-Martha Goodfellow 5 11.55 194 8 Harry Johnson-Kimberly Johnson 5 4.69 10.72 193 9 Jim Collins-Julie Collins 5 3.29 10.60 192 10 Bob Brown-Deborah Brown 5 4.08 10.41 191 11 John Mills-Susan Mills 5 9.68 190 12 Abraham Greyling-Joanne Greyling 5 8.84 189 13 Ryan Shoaf-Cherie Shoaf 5 8.51 188 14 Steven Conner-Stephanie Whitfield 0 2.59 8.45 187 15 Bryan Waddell-Sharon Waddell 5 8.06 186
Everyone has those days on the water when you catch fish but they all seem to be fanners or you just never get that kicker you’ve been looking for. Well, thanks to Berkeley Outdoors, one of our generous sponsors, our couples can still get a payday if they weigh in the smallest 5-fish limit. The father-daughter team of Ryan Coyle & Alyssa Madron were the recipients of the Berkeley Outdoors $50 Smallest Limit Award with 5 bass weighing an amazing 4.61 lbs.
Thanks to our sponsors we can provide drawings for those teams that do not earn a paycheck. Our sponsor items for this event included McElveen, Strike King, Yo-zuri, Phantom Outdoors, Five Bass Tackle, Choo Choo Custom Baits, Berkley Baits and JC’s Outdoors products.
Lake Wylie with be the next tournament for the South Carolina Division taking place on April 8th and launching from Ebenezer State Park.
For more information on this event or division please contact your local directors Tom Bancroft at (843) 697-6232 or Missy Bancroft at (843) 697-3441 or visit www.americanbassanglers.com
In the American Couples Series, anglers pair up for a team effort. Most teams consist of a husband and a wife, but that’s not a rule. Teams can consist of a boyfriend and girlfriend combination, a father and daughter duo, or any combination of one male and one female.
The teams compete in several regional or state divisions throughout the year. Once a pair forms a team, however, the two must fish together as a team throughout the season to be eligible to accumulate points and qualify for the annual national championship.
The entry fee for the American Couples Series one-day events is $100 and the top teams are invited to compete in the championship each fall.
American Bass Anglers is sponsored by Caymas Boats, Mercury Marine, T-H Marine, RT Outdoors, Atlas Hydraulic Jackplate, Power Pole, Optima Batteries, HotelPlanner.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
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