Hartsell Wins on Eufaula Oklahoma
EUFAULA, Okla. – Toby Hartsell won the Boater Division in the American Bass Anglers Open Series, Presented by Caymas Boats, Oklahoma Division 14, the first part of a weekend doubleheader, held May 6, 2023, at Lake Eufaula, Okla.
Launching at South Point Cove in the town of Eufaula, Okla., Hartsell from Afton, Okla., brought in a 5-bass tournament limit for 19.62 pounds. He capped that catch with a 5.71-pound bucketmouth that took the tournament lunker title.
That big bass gave Hartsell a 3.92-pound average. He earned $2,400 for the win and an extra $480 for the lunker.
“I caught fish on different baits,” Hartsell revealed. “I caught fish with a crankbait. When the wind got up, I caught bass on a ChatterBait, an EVO crankbait, and a finesse worm around some rocks off the bank. I caught 20 keepers. I didn’t catch many fish early. It seemed like they started eating once the wind got up around 10 a.m.”
In second among the boaters, John Campbell of Fort Gibson, Okla. also landed his 5-bass limit. He brought in 17.37 pounds, just 2.25 pounds behind the leader. He anchored that sack with a 4.40-pounder and took home $1,100 for second.
“I threw a Strike King KVD 1.5 square-billed crankbait,” Campbell commented. “I caught some more on a swim jig. I also threw a jig. I was fishing from the bank out to 10 feet of water. I had a limit by 11:05 a.m. and caught nine keepers all day. Once the wind kicked up, the fish turned on. I lost my trolling motor, so by 1 p.m. I was done.”
In third place for the boaters, George Simonof came over from Barksdale Air Force Base in Bossier City, La. to catch his 5-fish limit. He finished with 16.70 pounds, topped by a 4.41-pound kicker. He took a check for $900 back to Louisiana.
“I didn’t get any practice time, so I just put on a bladed jig and went to my favorite spot,” Simonof stated. “When that didn’t produce, I went to my second spot and had a limit by 7:30 a.m. I kept throwing that bladed jig for another two hours and didn’t get another bite, so I started flipping bushes. I caught some and lost a bunch. I had about 20 bites and caught 10 keepers.”
Darin E. Anderson from Sand Springs, Okla. finished fourth for the boaters with a 5-bass limit going 14.12 pounds, good enough to pocket $700. In fifth, Ricci L. Head of Shawnee, Okla. brought in five keepers for 13.74 pounds and earned $500.
In the Co-Angler Division, Logan E. Hoehne of Newalla, Okla. landed a 3-bass division limit to win with 13.91 pounds. That gave him an impressive 4.64-pound average. Helping his average, Hoehne landed a triple nickel 5.55-pound mossback that gave him division big bass honors. Hoehne collected $500 for the win and a $80 bonus for the big bass.
“I just put that square bill in my hand,” Hoehne explained. “I was doing the same thing my boater was doing. He would catch a 2-pounder and I’d catch a 5-pounder behind him. I had my first keeper by 6:40 a.m. That was the biggest one. I put the second one in the boat at 9 a.m. and the third one at 11:30 a.m. Once I put that third bass in the boat, I thought I had this tournament won.”
Taking the co-anglers second spot, Lat Nichols came up from Deport, Texas, to catch a 3-bass limit weighing 8.13 pounds. Nichols anchored that bag with a 3.42-pound kicker to earn $300.
In third for the co-anglers, Lathen J. Rebel from Rifle, Colo., found a limit of keepers going 7.36 pounds, enough to win $250. Stephen D. Stewart of Fort Gibson, Okla. finished fourth with three bass and 6.52 pounds, followed by Shane W. Cashman from Henryetta, Okla. with three bass for 6.04 pounds.
The division will hold the second part of its Lake Eufaula doubleheader on May 7, 2023. That event will also launch at South Point Cove, located at 400 Lakeshore Drive in Eufaula.
After leaving Lake Eufaula, the anglers will wrap up the regular season at Lake Tenkiller on June 24, 2023. That event runs out of Chicken Creek ramp in Cookson.
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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