2017 Missouri TBF’s Season Opener Off to a Cold Start; Several Anglers Adjust to Find Limits

Clouds, wind and rain challenge the anglers to adjust on Pomme

Anglers were greeted with a frigid start to the season at Pomme De Terre lake for the first of two Missouri TBF Qualifying tournaments.  The two-day event began with heavy rains on Thursday and Friday for practice and a cold shower for take-off on Saturday with temperatures hovering around 40 degrees.  This represented a drastic change from the warm spring weather with water temps dropping from near 70 degrees mid-week to 62 degrees over the weekend. Clouds and intermittent showers was the rule of the day with gusty winds from the North-Northeast right up until weigh-in. Of course with a strong field of 31 anglers (boaters and co-anglers) someone was bound to figure the pattern out and 14 limits were weighed in on Saturday led by Jerry Lovell’s 13.93 pound sack.  Big bass for the day belonged to Greg Lampton with 4.04 pound pre-spawn female.

Sunday challenged the anglers with completely different conditions, high bluebird skies with little wind. While the morning started out cold, it warmed quickly through the forties into the 60’s by weigh-in.  Several of the anglers made the right adjustments with 4 limits being weighed with the big sack belonging to Patrick O’Neal at 13.78 pounds. Big bass was weighed by Kenny Shinn at 5.01 lbs. followed in a close second by Patrick at 4.98 lbs.  For our Boaters, consistency was the key as they were the only ones to produce 5 fish limits each day.

Leading the field at the end of this weather challenged event was Jerry Lovell with a two-day total of 10 fish for 25.39 pounds.  Jerry focused in the clearer water within 3 miles of the dam.  On the first day he caught 9-10 keepers using a spinnerbait and jig in shallow bushes to catch pre-spawn fish cruising for beds.  On the second day he made the right adjustments and fished the same area with a Carolina rig lizard in 12-16 foot of water. While keepers were a little harder to come by on the second day his consistency lead him to the victory.

Finishing second on the boater side was Faron Morris who also keyed into the shallow, clear water bite on Saturday using a 5/16 oz. brush hog and magnum finesse worm on a shaky head.  He boated 13 keepers which allowed him to cull up to the second largest first day sack.  On day two he caught 4 of his 5 keepers early in deeper water (10-15 feet) in the same area.  His final keeper came later in the day as he  focused more on the brush piles instead of the bushes which completed his solid limit.

Rounding out our Qualifying field in the third place was Tim Merck.  Like the first two anglers, Tim concentrated in the coves near the dam but focused on suspended, cruising bass using a Ned rig.  He focused on water depths of 6-12 feet, swimming the rig to produce 8 keepers on Saturday and 9 keepers on Sunday.  Tim was the third angler to boat a limit on both days and finished 3+ pounds ahead of the 4th place angler.

On the Co-Angler side we had a tight race from the beginning.  Leading after day one was Troy Ladehoff with 5 fish for 10.35 pounds.  As we’ve come to expect, the changing conditions and inherent challenges of fishing as a co-angler shook up the standings on Sunday. 

Our first place co-angler was Gary Martin with 8 fish for 15.18 pounds (with Co-Angler big bass of 3.80 pounds).  He not only adjusted to the weather but also to his boaters by catching fish both deep and shallow.  Second place went to one of our newer co-anglers, John Hodson with 7 fish for 14.65 pounds.  Troy Richter took the final co-angler slot for the National Semi-Final by using a weightless Senko to target shallow fish in the bushes and avoid the moss-covered rocks/bushes.  His total of 6 fish for 12.85 pounds, finishing just ahead of the first day leader Troy Ladehoff who had 11.61 pounds.

We would like to thank all the boaters and co-anglers for competing at our first Qualifier.  With new leadership at the state level, the officers appreciate all the help and support we had from the members at our first tournament.  The sportsmanship shown by all the anglers with the new tournament format was also greatly appreciated.  Finally, the Missouri TBF welcomed several new members and enjoyed the opportunity to get to know Andy Price, Josh Moore, Jon Nichols and Don Campbell.   


2017 Missouri TBF National Semi-Finals Qualifiers Announced

Missouri TBF Members Can Qualify for the 2017 Missouri-Kansas TBF National Semi-Final!

April 22-23 – Pomme de Terre Lake – Hermitage State Park

June 3-4 – Lake Truman – Long Shoal Corp Ramp

$180 Tournament Boater Entry Fee

$140 Tournament Co-Angler Entry Fee

– $10 Daily Big Bass Pot (Optional)

All Anglers Fish for Daily Cash Awards!

Draw Format – NO pre-tournament meeting night before. First day pairings will be e-mailed to participants Wednesday night prior to each tournament.

Partners responsible for contacting each other prior to tournament

Pre-Takeoff Meeting: All anglers must register at take-off site 45 minutes prior to take-off.

Click HERE for Tournament Entry Form!


2017 Missouri TBF News & Announcements


The Inaugural District 7 MO/KS National Semi-Final

See the results and who qualified for the 2017 TBF National Tournament!


2016 BFL All-American Winner Jeremy Lawyer and 2016 MO TBF Youth State Champion Cole Godwin

Check out the full story on Jeremy Lawyer and Cole Godwin Congrats to Lawyer-Godwin.


2016 FLW All-American Champion Jeremy Lawyer! Congratulations Jeremy!

Check out the full story of how Jeremy Lawyer became the 2016 FLW All American winner.


2016 Central Divisional

Read this official announcement for all the details about this years Central Divisional tournament being held at Truman Lake June 22nd through June 24th!


FLW to Debut 24-event High School Fishing Open Series

MINNEAPOLIS (Dec. 14, 2016) – Fishing League Worldwide (FLW) and The Bass Federation (TBF) today announced a multi-year extension to their strategic partnership, bolstering the relationship between the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization and the nation’s oldest broad-based grassroots fishing, youth and conservation organization. Terms of the agreement were not released.

As part of the extended partnership FLW will undertake the largest expansion of the co-managed High School Fishing program since launching the state-championship series of High School Fishing events in partnership with TBF in 2011. The expansion includes facilitating a new series of 24 High School Fishing Open tournaments to complement the existing State Championships and High School Fishing World Finals coordinated by TBF. TBF will also debut two High School Fishing Challenge events to meet growing demand from the more than 15,000 young anglers that participated in the program in 2016. All told, students will now have 76 FLW and TBF High School Fishing events in which to compete in 2017.

“High School Fishing is the foundation on which our sport will continue to grow,” said FLW President of Operations Kathy Fennel. “With the continued erosion of traditional pathways into fishing, the industry is taking note of High School Fishing’s recruitment, retention and reactivation potential. All it takes is one visit to a High School Fishing tournament to see that FLW and TBF have tapped into something special that unites generations in a way our sport has never seen before.”

No changes will be made to the existing program for adult TBF anglers. Fourteen TBF anglers (seven boaters and seven co-anglers) will advance to the BFL All-American from the TBF National Championship. The TBF National Champion boater will also advance to the Forrest Wood Cup and continue to receive the life-changing “Living the Dream” package to fish the entire season as an FLW Tour pro using a TBF-wrapped Ranger boat and tow vehicle without paying a single entry fee. TBF members will also continue to receive priority entry into all FLW tournaments.

“TBF is proud to partner with FLW in providing the nation’s most extensive network of grass-roots fishing opportunities from our TBF junior program through high school and college to the TBF National Semi-Final Series for adult anglers and ultimately our ‘Living the Dream’ package on the FLW Tour,” said TBF President Robert Cartlidge. “No two organizations work more closely to provide more fishing opportunities for more anglers nationwide than FLW and TBF. We are proud of that tradition and what it means for future generations.”

Veteran Bass Fishing League (BFL) tournament director Dave Maxfield has been tapped to lead the new series of High School Fishing Opens as FLW High School Fishing tournament director. Working closely alongside Maxfield will be Scott Ellison, who has been promoted to FLW Youth Director and Promotion’s Manager.

Going forward, High School Fishing will operate on a school calendar with the National Championship being held in the summer in conjunction with the High School Fishing World Finals. The top 10 percent of teams in each State Championship, Challenge and Open will advance directly to the High School Fishing National Championship. The High School Fishing national champions will each receive a $5,000 college scholarship to the school of their choice.

All participants must be Student Angler Federation (SAF) members to participate. SAF membership includes both TBF and FLW membership plus a digital subscription to FLW Bass Fishing magazine, online training courses and more.

SAF members never pay an entry fee to participate in FLW or TBF High School Fishing tournaments and all clubs are covered by SAF insurance, which means there is no added expense for schools with sanctioned High School Fishing clubs.

2017 High School Fishing Open & Challenge Schedule:

Jan. 15 – Lake Okeechobee Challenge,   Lake Okeechobee

Feb. 19 – Lake Hartwell Early Bird Challenge, Lake Hartwell

March 4 – South Carolina Open,  Lake Murray

March 11 – Mississippi Open, Columbus Pool

March 25 – Arkansas Open, Lake Hamilton

April 1 – Texas Open, Lake of the Pines

April 22 – Alabama Open, Logan Martin Lake

April 29 – North Carolina Open, High Rock Lake

May 6 – Wisconsin Open & Iowa State Championship, Mississippi River @ La Crosse

May 13 – Missouri Open, Truman Lake

May 14 – California Open & State Championship, California Delta

May 20 – Virginia Open & State Championship, Claytor Lake

June 3 – Minnesota Open, Mississippi River

June 10 – Michigan Open & State Championship, Detroit River

Sept. 9 – Louisiana Open, Ouachita River

Sept. 16 – Maryland Open, Potomac River

Sept. 23 – Pennsylvania Open, Raystown Lake

Sept. 30 – Indiana Open, Lake Monroe

Oct. 7 – Illinois Open, Lake Springfield

Oct.14 – New York Open, Oneida Lake

Oct. 21- Oklahoma Open, Grand Lake

Oct. 28 – Ohio Open, Caesar Creek

Nov. 4 – Kentucky Open, Lake Cumberland

Nov. 18 – Tennessee Open, Norris Lake

Dec. 2 – Georgia Open, Lake Lanier

Dec. 9 – Florida Open, St. Johns River

2017 High School Fishing State Championship Schedule:

Jan. 29 – Texas State Championship, Sam Rayburn Reservoir

Feb. 11 – Georgia State Championship, West Point Lake

Feb. 26 – Florida State Championship, St. Johns River

March 25 – Louisiana State Championship,Cross Lake

April 1- Kentucky State Championship, Lake Cumberland

April 1- Mississippi State Championship, Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway

April 2 – Illinois State Championship, Clinton Lake

April 9 – North Carolina State Championship, Kerr Lake

April 9 – Missouri State Championship, Table Rock Lake

April 29 – South Carolina State Championship, Lake Murray

May 6 – Ohio State Championship, Alum Creek Reservoir

May 7 – Arkansas State Championship, Lake Dardanelle

May 7 – Idaho State Championship, C.J. Strike Reservoir

May 7 – Tennessee State Championship, Norris Lake

May 20 – Arizona State Championship, Lake Pleasant

May 21 – Alabama State Championship, Lake Neely Henry

June 3 – Indiana State Championship, Brookville Lake

June 3 – Massachusetts, Rhode Island & Connecticut Tri State Championship, Mashapaug Pond

June 11 – Colorado & New Mexico Dual State Championship, Lake Pueblo

July 8 – Wisconsin State Championship, Lake Winnebago

July 9 – Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland & New Jersey Quad State Championship,Chesapeake Bay

July 15 – New York State Championship, Mohawk River

July 15 – South Dakota State Championship, Lake Cochran

July 16 – Minnesota State Championship, Mille Lacs Lake

July 16 – Ontario Province Championship, Georgian Bay

July 22 – Nebraska State Championship, Lake Merritt

Aug. 13 – Washington State Championship, Potholes Reservoir

High School Fishing World Finals and National Championships:

June 3, 2017 – National Championship, Wheeler Lake
(2016 qualifiers)

June 27-July 1, 2017   2017 World Finals/National Championship, Pickwick Lake. (qualifiers from events held Jan. 1 – June 10, 2017)

June 26-30, 2018        2018 World Finals/National Championship, TBA. (qualifiers from events held June 11, 2017 to June 9, 2018)

Complete rules can be found online at FLWFishing.com and Highschoolfishing.org.

For State Championships, each team must compete in the state in which their school is located. Teams from all states can participate in Open tournaments and Challenge events. Entries for State Championships and Challenge events should be made at Highschoolfishing.org or by calling TBF at (580)-765-9031. Entries for Opens should be made at FLWfishing.com or by calling FLW at (270)-252-1000. Entries for all events will be accepted beginning January 3. There is no limit to the number of teams accepted into a tournament from each school or club.

Full schedules, including additional state championships, and latest announcements will be available on Highschoolfishing.org and FLWFishing.com.

About FLW

FLW is the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, providing anglers of all skill levels the opportunity to compete for millions in prize money in 2017 across five tournament circuits. Headquartered in Benton, Kentucky, with offices in Minneapolis, FLW conducts more than 235 bass-fishing tournaments annually across the United States and sanctions tournaments in Canada, China, Mexico, South Africa and South Korea. FLW tournament fishing can be seen on the Emmy-nominated “FLW” television show, broadcast to more than 564 million households worldwide, while FLW Bass Fishing magazine delivers cutting-edge tips from top pros. For more information visit FLWFishing.com and follow FLW at Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Snapchat: @FLWFishing.

 About The Bass Federation

The Bass Federation Inc., (TBF) is a member of the Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame. TBF is owned by those we serve and dedicated to the sport of fishing. The Federation is the largest and oldest, organized grassroots fishing, youth and conservation organization there is. TBF, our affiliated state federations and their member clubs conduct more than 20,000 events each year and have provided a foundation for the entire bass fishing industry for more than 45 years. TBF founded the Student Angler Federation and the National High School Fishing program in 2008 to promote clean family fun and education through fishing. Visit bassfederation.com or highschoolfishing.org and “LIKE US” on Facebook.


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