Zwick & Jones Claim Bass Series Championship!
After six qualifying events on three different lakes spanning from early May to September, there were 23 anglers who successfully qualified for the Great Parks Bass Series Championship. The prize at stake: a $1,000 shopping spree to Bass Pro Shops!
The Championship was a two-day competition at Winton Woods Lake on Saturday, September 20 and Sharon Woods Lake on Sunday, September 21. The weather was perfect, the lakes were in terrific condition and the fishing did not disappoint.
Winton Woods Lake has a reputation as a great crankbait and spinnerbait lake, and that proved to be the case again on Saturday. Andy McCray and Matt Eggenberger took a commanding lead with a beautiful five-bass limit that tipped the scales at 14.28 pounds! Ryan Zwick and Brent Jones were a distant second with 11.62 pounds. Steve and Matt Wheeler culled fish all day, and their best five weighed 11 pounds. After day one, there were nine teams within seven pounds of the leaders. Sharon Woods has produced some huge bags at previous tournaments, which gave most anglers hope that they still had a chance going into Sunday.
However, the weather threw the fishermen a curve ball on Sunday. The morning started windy and cloudy, ending with a bright blue, high-pressure sky in the afternoon. It provided an opportunity for somebody to solve the puzzle and come from behind…and that is exactly what happened.
McCray and Eggenberger could not catch a keeper and fell to sixth place by tournament end. Previous success on this lake would be the jolt of confidence that Zwick and Jones leaned on to make the necessary adjustments to catch fish. They turned to their specialty, finesse fishing with a little plastic worm, and wow did it ever pay off. They brought a five-bass limit to the scales weighing 11.93 pounds, giving them a two-day total of 23.55 pounds! They won the championship with a 4.61-pound margin over the second place team of James Whitaker and Brian McLucas and in doing so claimed the $1,000 Bass Pro Shops shopping spree!
Whitaker and McLucas won $520.80 in Great Parks prize certificates as the second place team. Steve and Shawn Gardner won $347.20 in Great Parks prize certificates as the third place team. Steve and Matt Wheeler had the biggest bass at Winton Woods, which weighed 3.71 pounds. James Whitaker and Brian McLucas had the biggest bass at Sharon Woods, which weighed 3.82 pounds.
Overall, 147.47 pounds of bass was weighed in over the two-day tournament. Congratulations to all competitors on a terrific championship!
Neal Ramsey, District Recreation Manager