Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Johnson remains consistent to Win Lake O’ the Pines

JEFFERSON, Texas – Arthur A. Johnson remains consistent on both days on a very windy Top 150 Solo Series, Lake O’ the Pines.   This Top 150 Solo Series tournament Presented by Caymas Boats was held April 28-29, 2023.

Launching at Lakeside Park in Jefferson, Texas, the angler from Judson, Texas, finished with a perfect 10-bass, 2-day limit going 42.68 pounds, beating his nearest competitor by more than three pounds. That gave him a 4.27-pound average and put a check worth $13,000 in his pocket.

“I was fishing post-spawn fish in two to four feet of water,” Johnson revealed. “I threw a Texas rig, Senkos and flukes around grass on the north end of the lake. On the first day, I didn’t put a keeper in the boat until 10:30 a.m.”

During the 2-day event, anglers brought in five daily sacks weighing more than 21 pounds. Johnson caught two of them. He sat in third place on Day 1 with five bass at 21.48 pounds. Fishing consistently, he landed 21.20 pounds on Day 2, topped by a 5.89-pounder to seal the victory. 

“On the first day, I culled 10 times and seven times the final day,” Johnson remembered. “I caught about 25 keepers a day. On the second day, I caught a bass about every 10 to 15 minutes. The north wind was horrible.”

In second for the competitors, Blake A. Schroeder from Whitehouse, Texas, finished with two consecutive 5-bass daily tournament limits weighing 39.57 pounds. Schroeder held sixth place on Day 1 with 19.59 pounds.

“Every morning, I started on an offshore spot in about eight to 10 feet of water close to the landing,” Schroeder advised. “On the first day, I caught my big one there and lost one that probably weighed about four pounds. On Day 1, I went up north and fished shallow. I caught about eight keepers and culled a few times.”

Another consistent angler, Schroeder brought in another 19.98 pounds the second day to move up four slots. At the end, he pocketed $5,500 for second place.

“On the second day, someone was on my offshore spot, but they moved after about 20 minutes,” Schroeder stated. “I caught a 6-pounder and a 4-pounder. When I left there with those two bass and two small fish, I went back up the lake and threw a shad-colored ChatterBait. I caught about nine keepers the second day.”

Just behind Schroeder, Lance J. Silvertooth of Kilgore, Texas, took the third slot with 10 bass at 39.29 pounds. He held fourth on the first day with 20.95 pounds. He added 18.34 more pounds on the second day to collect $4,200.

“I fished up shallow in two places on the northern end of the lake,” Silvertooth detailed. “I threw a Senko and a ChatterBait. On the first day, I caught a few fish on a frog, but that bite shut down the second day with the north wind blowing, but I had my second spot all to myself.”

Landing in fourth, Benji Gulett from Converse, La. found two daily limits to finish with 38.06 pounds. He held fifth on Day 1 with 20.25 pounds topped by a 6.05-pound kicker. He brought in 17.81 pounds on the final day to move up one rung and earn $2,500.

“I did a mixture of things,” Gulett divulged. “I caught fish on a Spook, a buzzbait, a ChatterBait in shallow pockets on the south end of the lake. I had six bites and caught six keepers on the first day. I culled once. On the second day, I caught seven bass and culled once.”

Rounding out the Top Five, Jeffery L. Rice from Shreveport, La. finished with a perfect 10 bass going 37.24 pounds. On Day 1, he held eighth place with 17.75 pounds. Rice upped his game on the final day, landing 19.49 pounds, capped by a 6.56-pound kicker. That enabled him to jump three slots and collect $2,100.

In sixth place, Jacob G. Williams from Westlake, La. ended the event with 10 bass at 35.24 pounds. He held 21st place on Day 1 with 13.30 pounds. On Day 2, Williams brought in the heaviest bag of the day at 21.94 pounds including a 6.81-pound kicker. With that, he jumped 15 levels and took home a check for $1,300.

Jeffrey D. Kennedy of Longview, Texas, held down seventh place both days, finishing with 10 bass and 33.71 pounds. He caught 18.04 pounds the first day and 15.67 pounds the second day to earn $1,200.

Wesley Dawson of Chester, Texas, dropped from second place on Day 1 to finish eighth with 10 bass at 33.16 pounds. On Day 1, he caught 22.27 pounds, the second largest single-day sack in the tournament. He topped that bag with an 8.73-pound largemouth that eventually took the tournament lunker title. On the second day, Dawson brought in 10.89 pounds and dropped six rungs, but he still pocketed $1,050 for eighth place an another $1,000 for the lunker.

Day 1 leader Brennan M. Flick from West Monroe, La. finished ninth with eight bass and 30.56 pounds. On the first day, he brought in the heaviest bag of the tournament, five bass weighing 24.04 pounds. He topped that catch with a 7.50-pounder. On Day 2, he caught three keepers for 6.52 pounds, but collected $1,000 for the effort.

Wrapping up the Top 10, Kevin L. Lasyone from Dry Prong, La. caught a 10-bass 2-day limit going 30.43 pounds to pick up $950. He sat in 12th place on Day 1 with 15.82 pounds. He added 14.61 pounds on the final day to move up two spots.

Final Results

The Southwest Division wraps up its season May 26-27, 2023, at Toledo Bend Reservoir on the Louisiana-Texas line. That event runs out of Lost Frontier, located at 5518 Texas-21 in Hemphill, Texas. To register for the Toledo Bend event, CLICK HERE.

The ABA Top 150 Solo Series, Presented by Caymas Boats, Southeast and Southwest Divisions each hold three 2-day tournaments for the season. Both divisions offer big cash payouts and chances for anglers to advance to higher levels of competition.

Each angler pays $600 to enter each divisional tournament and everyone fishes alone both days. No more than 150 anglers can participate in any divisional event. If 150 anglers participate, the winner will take home a guaranteed $20,000. If fewer competitors register, the top 20 percent of the field will each earn a portion of the prize money, based upon the number of entries.

Anglers could also qualify for one of two post-season tournaments. The top 15 points holders in each division at the end of the regular season will qualify to fish the ABA Top 150 Solo Series Championship, providing they fished all three of their divisional events. The Tour Championship will take place Oct. 6-7, 2023, at a venue to be announced later.

Conducted like the divisional events, the Tour Championship will involve two days of intense competition with the winner taking home $25,000. In addition, every angler in the field will receive a payout. 

Anglers who did not qualify for the Tour Championship by points, but who fished all three of the qualifiers in their division, will be invited to fish a 2-day Wild Card event, slated for Lake Neely Henry. That event will run out of Coosa Landing, located at 200 Lake Street in Gadsden, Ala. on July 14-15, 2023.

From this Wild Card tournament, the top five anglers will advance to the ABA Top 150 Solo Series Championship. Qualifying through their divisions by points and additionally from the Wild Card, the Tour Championship field will total 35 competitors.

Moreover, the top five anglers by points from each division after the Tour Championship will be eligible to fish the 2024 Ray Scott Championship. The 9th annual Ray Scott Championship, Presented by Caymas Boats, will be held on Lake Chickamauga near Dayton, Tenn. during the week of March 30-April 6, 2024. 

In addition, anglers may qualify for bonus money offered by such tournament sponsors as Caymas Boats, Mercury Marine, the T-H Marine Atlas Awards program and Power Pole. See each manufacturer’s website for details, rules, and qualifications for more information on their contingency programs.

Anyone who wishes to fish an ABA event must become an ABA member. ABA members can receive discounts from some sponsors. For example, Optima Batteries will give ABA members 25 percent off and free shipping on any battery. Membership costs $35 a year, but anglers can save money by signing up for multiple years. 

For more information or to register for any ABA Solo 150 event, see www.americanbassanglers.com/Top150

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.

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