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Arkansas’ Williams Edges Field for Win at Phoenix Bass Fishing League Event at Table Rock Lake

KIMBERLING CITY, Mo. – Boater Clint Williams of Fayetteville, Arkansas, caught a five-bass limit weighing 18 pounds, 6 ounces, Saturday to win the MLF Phoenix Bass Fishing League (BFL) Presented by T-H Marine on Table Rock Lake. The tournament was the third event of the season for the BFL Ozark Division. Williams, a veteran MLF angler, notched his first career win across various levels of competition and earned $4,806 for his victory.

“I sight-fished in the morning, and caught a decent limit doing that,” said Williams. “Then I hit a spot where I knew there was a shad ball and caught two good culls on a swimbait.”

Williams said he caught about a dozen keepers during the tournament by fishing from the tournament takeoff location at the Port of Kimberling Marina and Resort to the dam. He relied on a 4.3-inch electric shad-colored Keitech Swimbait, as well as a variety of soft-plastic baits when he was sight fishing.

“I thought I needed one more really good bite for the win,” Williams said. “With five minutes left to fish, I pushed myself for all I was worth to catch that last good one. Then, I had some motor problems heading back and made it to weigh-in with 30 seconds to go. It was a nerve-wracking day. But when it’s your day, it’s your day.”

The top 10 boaters finished the tournament:

1st:        Clint Williams, Fayetteville, Ark., five bass, 18-6, $4,806
2nd:       Cole Findley, Forsyth, Mo., five bass, 18-3, $2,903 (includes $500 Phoenix MLF Contingency Bonus)
3rd:       Aaron Stanphill, Bella Vista, Ark., five bass, 18-1, $1,605
4th:        Derek Felton, Willard, Mo., five bass, 17-15, $1,121
5th:        Dustin Blevins, Harrison, Ark., five bass, 17-13, $961
6th:        Shane Long, Willard, Mo., five bass, 17-12, $881
7th:        Bobby Roberts, Lotawana, Mo., five bass, 17-9, $801
8th:        Jeffrey Barrickman, Forsyth, Mo., five bass, 17-0, $721
9th:        Wesley Rogers, Thayer, Mo., five bass, 16-14, $641
10th:     Shawn Kowal, Linn Creek, Mo., five bass, 16-3, $561

Complete results can be found at MajorLeagueFishing.com.

Brandon Ackerson of Afton, Oklahoma, caught a bass that weighed 5 pounds, 1 ounce, and earned the Berkley Big Bass Boater award of $725.

Jason Brown of Miami, Oklahoma, won the Strike King co-angler division and a total of $2,403 Saturday, after bringing five bass to the scale that totaled 13 pounds, 13 ounces.

The top 10 Strike King co-anglers finished:

1st:        Jason Brown, Miami, Okla., five bass, 13-13, $2,403
2nd:       Alan Bernicky, Joliet, Ill., five bass, 13-11, $1,751
3rd:       Ben Peters, Bennington, Neb., four bass, 12-1, $806
4th:        Jeremy White, Dittmer, Mo., five bass, 11-15, $561
5th:        Joe Tucker, Osceola, Mo., five bass, 11-14, $481
6th:        Brian Huber, Saint Charles, Mo., five bass, 11-13, $441
7th:        Tim Sisco, Fair Grove, Mo., five bass, 11-9, $400
8th:        Aaron Stross, Joplin, Mo., five bass, 11-8, $360
9th:        Shawn Kemper, Iberia, Mo., five bass, 11-7, $320
10th:     Donald Pailer, Arnold, Mo., four bass, 11-4, $280

Kelsey Ray of Joplin, Missouri, earned the Berkley Big Bass co-angler award of $362, catching a bass that weighed in at 4 pounds, 6 ounces – the largest co-angler catch of the day.

After three events, Kyle Kitts of Joplin, Missouri, leads the BFL Ozark Division Boater Angler of the Year (AOY) race with 716 points, while Adler Odle of Willow Springs, Missouri, leads the Strike King Co-Angler Division AOY race with 697 points.

The top 45 boaters and co-anglers in the region based on point standings, along with the five tournament winners of each qualifying event, will qualify for the Oct. 5-7 BFL Regional tournament on Lake Eufaula in Eufaula, Oklahoma. Boaters will fish for a top award of $60,000, including a new Phoenix 819 Pro with a 200-horsepower Mercury outboard and $10,000, while co-anglers will compete for a top award of $50,000, including a new Phoenix 819 Pro with a 200-horsepower Mercury outboard.

The 2023 Phoenix BFL Presented by T-H Marine is a 24-division circuit devoted to weekend anglers, with 128 events throughout the season, five qualifying tournaments in each division. The top 45 boaters and Strike King co-anglers from each division, along with the five qualifying event winners, will advance to one of six BFL Regional tournaments where they are competing to finish in the top six, which then qualifies them for one of the longest-running championships in all of competitive bass fishing – the BFL All-American. The 2023 All-American event will take place May 31-June 2, on Lake Hartwell in Seneca, South Carolina. The event is hosted by Visit Oconee SC.

Proud sponsors of the 2023 MLF Phoenix Bass Fishing League Presented by T-H Marine include: 4WP, 13 Fishing, Abu Garcia, B&W Trailer Hitches, Berkley, Black Rifle Coffee, E3, Epic Baits, Favorite Fishing, General Tire, Grundéns, Gill, Lew’s, Lowrance, Mercury, Mossy Oak, Mystik Lubricants, Onyx, Phoenix, Polaris, Power-Pole, Strike King, Tackle Warehouse, T-H Marine, Toyota, Wiley X and YETI.

For complete details and updated tournament information, visit MajorLeagueFishing.com.

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