RUSSELLVILLE, Ark. – Boater Shawn Gordon of Russellville, Arkansas, caught a five-bass limit weighing 20 pounds, 3 ounces, Saturday to win the MLF Phoenix Bass Fishing League (BFL) Presented by T-H Marine on Lake Dardanelle. The tournament, hosted by Russellville Tourism, was the fourth event of the season for the BFL Arkie Division. Gordon earned $5,683 for his victory.
“I didn’t catch any fish until 9 o’clock,” said Gordon, who has seven top-10 finishes on Lake Dardanelle in BFL competition. “I finally caught a couple and then hopped around and fished ledges with a (unnamed) Strike King crankbait and a red worm.”
Gordon said he focused his efforts on the lower third of Dardanelle, in water ranging from eight to 15 feet deep. His efforts produced a total of nine keepers during the day.
“Later on in the day I thought I had a pretty good shot, but I really thought I had to cull one more time,” Gordon said. “So, this win feels pretty good.”
The top 10 boaters finished the tournament:
1st: Shawn Gordon, Russellville, Ark., five bass, 20-3, $5,683
2nd: Sawyer Grace, Russellville, Ark., five bass, 17-3, $2,432
3rd: Kevin Brown, Hot Springs, Ark., five bass, 16-14, $1,989 (includes $500 Phoenix MLF Contingency Bonus)
4th: Jeremiah Kindy, Benton, Ark., five bass, 16-8, $1,041
5th: Jeff Clark, Van Buren, Ark., five bass, 16-7, $1,193
6th: Ben Burk, Norman, Okla., five bass, 15-3, $818
7th: Brent Haggard, Sallisaw, Okla., five bass, 15-0, $994
8th: Quincy Houchin, Mabelvale, Ark., five bass, 14-13, $669
9th: Chris Huselton, Conway, Ark., five bass, 13-9, $595
10th: Mike Webster, Pottsville, Ark., five bass, 13-0, $521
Complete results can be found at MajorLeagueFishing.com.
Brandon Gabe of England, Arkansas, caught a largemouth that weighed 5 pounds, 2 ounces, and earned the Berkley Big Bass Boater award of $640.
Koby Gooden of North Little Rock, Arkansas, won the Strike King co-angler division and a total of $2,214 Saturday, after bringing five bass to the scale that totaled 15 pounds, 9 ounces.
The top 10 Strike King co-anglers finished:
1st: Koby Gooden, North Little Rock, Ark., five bass, 15-9, $2,214
2nd: Ron Knight, Hot Springs Village, Ark., three bass, 7-11, $1,107
3rd: Remington Lawrence, Russellville, Ark., three bass, 6-15, $738
4th: Caden Fuller, Waldron, Ark., five bass, 6-14, $517
5th: Blake Defoor, Waldron, Ark., four bass, 6-13, $443
6th: Demetric Johnson, Little Rock, Ark., five bass, 6-12, $406
7th: Troy Speers, Malvern, Ark., two bass, 6-10, $667
7th: Tim Bowers, Thayer, Mo., three bass, 6-10, $350
9th: Zach Oliver, Coal Hill, Ark., three bass, 6-7, $295
10th: Blake Smith, Benton, Ark., three bass, 6-5, $258
Troy Speers of Malvern, Arkansas, earned the Berkley Big Bass co-angler award of $317, catching a largemouth that weighed in at 5 pounds, 7 ounces – the largest co-angler catch of the day.
After four events, Wayne Dixon of Morrilton, Arkansas, leads the BFL Arkie Division Boater Angler of the Year (AOY) race with 962 points, while John Hankins of Atkins, Arkansas, leads the Strike King Co-Angler Division AOY race with 962 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 2024 BFL All-American.
Proud sponsors of the 2023 MLF Phoenix Bass Fishing League Presented by T-H Marine include: 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.