Article reposted from NY B.A.S.S. Chapter Federation written by Fred Blom
Rochester angler wins NEW YORK B.A.S.S. CHAPTER FEDERATION 2014 Susan Johnson Opening Tournament, Lake Champlain, Plattsburgh, New York
Plattsburgh, New York—The weather was cool, calm and clear as 170 anglers eased out of the Dock Street Marina in Plattsburgh on Sunday to open the 2014 New York BASS Chapter Federation tournament season. Months of preparation and planning and days of practicing were behind the anglers now. Proof of the strategies and plans would be forthcoming at the weighin. One of the first anglers to the scales was Rochester, New York angler Chris Obrien. He wowed the crowd with a five fish limit of smallmouth bass that weighed in at 19.61 pounds! He now had to wait it out as the rest of the field still had to weighin. Mid-way through the event, Jamie Hartman arrived at the tanks all smiles. The two anglers shared a glance as Chris waited anxiously for the scales to settle. Jamie’s total was 19.52 pounds was good enough for second place by a mere ounce. Rounding out the top five on the boater side were Ryan Friscia with 18.17 pounds, Rob LaMoy with 17.92 pounds and Bill Alexander with 17.46 pounds. The big fish lunker for the boaters was a 5.13 pound largemouth caught by Jamie Hartman on a Riot Baits Fuzzy Beaver.
Four of the top five anglers fished for smallmouth on the northern end of the lake. They found that the smallmouth were up shallow and were actively feeding. Drop shots, tubes and jigs were the baits of choice in a variety of colors and sizes. The one angler making the long trek to the southern part of the lake was fishing heavy grass cover with a one ounce weight and the Fuzzy Beaver bait.
On the co-angler side, Scott Suckman from Hudson Falls, New York came to the scales with 17.82 pounds of smallmouth bass to secure the win. He was followed closely by Mark Hertlein from Ontario, New York who brought 17.20 pounds for second place. Third place angler Wyatt Morris was in a car accident on Saturday afternoon while traveling to the event. With a swollen jaw and in some pain he still fished the event and finished in third place with 15.93 pounds. Fourth place angler Butch Kritsberg with 15.05 pounds and Bill Peck with 15.02 pounds rounded out the top five. All of the co-anglers fished smallmouth bass in the northern end of the lake. They used a combination of drop shot lures including Berkley Gulp and jigs tipped with senkos or trailers. Craig Seeley from Fulton, New York weighed in a 4.98 pound largemouth for big bass honors on the co-angler side. Craig spent the day with Mike Mapes in the southern part of the lake and caught his fish on a green pumpkin tube.
The community of Plattsbugh provided an outstanding facility. Alyssa Felio, the Adirondack Coast Visitor’s Bureau liason had the park, the ramp, the marina and the community ready for us to arrive. Mayor Jim Calnon and his police and parks departments did an outstanding job in preparing for the event.
As in all of our events, we highlight the environment and how our anglers act as steward for the lake we visit. Our release boat was in full operation and returned our catch to the lake in good health. We also implemented our award winning Ramp Monkey program with the help of Plattsburgh High School Biology teacher Amy Sholtis and the Green Team. The students were presented with a short informational meeting on invasive species and specific plants to look for on Lake Champlain. They were then trained on how to implement Clean, Drain and Dry, the new DEC regulations for boat ramps in New York State. This program includes opening the boat bilge drain, cleaning any debris from the boat and trailer and making sure that the boater empties their livewells. Before the start of the weighin, the students cleaned the entire launch area, set up lanes for the boaters to pull into for cleaning and then processed the 85 boats of the tournament. Local television coverage helped to hilite the activity to the community to help encourage the new regulations and to demonstrate the anglers concern about the environment.
About the NYBCF…The New York B.A.S.S. Chapter Federation (NYBCF) has been operating for 42 years and its 50 plus B.A.S.S. sanctioned bass chapter clubs represent more than just tournament fishing. We fulfill our mission to promote and protect the sport of bass fishing by organizing award winning programs in youth, conservation and community service. Associated with Bass Anglers Sportsman’s Society, the NYBCF is the New York region’s foremost advocate for bass fishing and fisherman’s rights. The Federation offers a competitive annual tournament tour and extensive youth and conservation projects. Some of our members have proudly advanced into the professional ranks and competed in national level competitions.
6/12/12 Results have been posted for Saturday’s Gordie Anderson Memorial – Plunder Bay Open – Tournament. You can see the results at the Rutland County Bassmasters website by clicking here. Congratulations to the top finishers.