Friday, April 15, 2011

FLW Tour Lake Chickamauga Day 2: Pirch Jumps to Top

Arizona's Clifford Pirch take a slim lead over Shinichi Fukae
Day 2 Leader.
(Photo: Rob Newell FLW)
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. – Clifford Pirch of Payson, Ariz., caught a five-bass limit weighing 20 pounds, 6 ounces Friday to capture the lead on day two of the Walmart FLW Tour on Lake Chickamauga presented by National Guard. His two-day catch of 10 bass weighing 43 pounds, 11 ounces gives him a slim 3-ounce lead heading into the third day of the tournament. There were 154 pros and 154 co-anglers from across the United States and Canada that started the tournament. The top 20 will fish day three and the top 10 will compete for the title on day four.

“I had a slower start today,” Pirch said. “I did get a couple sight fishing this morning. But by midday I started to get on them a little bit and had a couple of good passes where I was able to get a limit and then cull and got some momentum. It ended up working out real well.

“I had a great end to the day,” Pirch added. “It wasn’t action all day long, but it worked out well.

Pirch said he caught about a dozen keepers throughout the course of the day and relied on Typhoon polarized optics to help him spot bedding bass. He said he targeted those bass with a Roboworm creature bait.

“There’s a lot of fish in this lake and it’s a fun place to fish,” Pirch said. “There’s a lot of big ones. Hopefully I can go out and do it again tomorrow.”

Pirch said Friday’s rain hampered his sight fishing a bit, but other than making the fishermen uncomfortable the weather didn’t play a major role in the fishing.

“It didn’t change the fishing much,” Pirch said. “I’m hoping we won’t have too much muddy water (Saturday). Either way, I’ll try to roll with it and find some clean water and try to catch them just fishing.”

Rounding out the top 20 pros that will fish another day on Lake Chickamauga are:

2nd: Cheez-It pro Shinichi Fukae, Palestine, Texas, 10 bass, 43-8

3rd: Robbie Dodson, Harrison, Ark., 10 bass, 42-3

4th: Tom Monsoor, La Crosse, Wis., 10 bass, 36-15

5th: Randy McAbee Jr., Bakersfield, Calif., 10 bass, 35-7

6th: Jay Keith, Camden, S.C., 10 bass, 35-2

7th: Dearal Rodgers, Camden, S.C., 10 bass, 35-1

8th: National Guard pro Scott Martin, Clewiston, Fla., 10 bass, 34-11

9th: Straight Talk pro J.T. Kenney, Palm Bay, Fla., 10 bass, 34-1

10th: J.T. Palmore, Blackstone, Va., 10 bass, 34-1

11th: Kyle Mabrey, McCalla, Ala., nine bass, 33-12

12th: Castrol pro David Dudley, Lynchburg, Va., 10 bass, 33-9

13th: Straight Talk pro Scott Canterbury, Springville, Ala., 10 bass, 33-8

14th: National Guard pro Brett Hite, Phoenix, Ariz., 10 bass, 33-4

15th: Brad Knight, Wartburg, Tenn., 10 bass, 33-1

16th: Goodwill pro Chad Grigsby, Maple Grove, Minn., 10 bass, 32-12

17th: Shad Schenck, Waynetown, Ind., 10 bass, 32-12

18th: Rob Kilby, Hot Springs, Ark., nine bass, 32-11

19th: Kevin Snider, Elizabethtown, Ky., 10 bass, 32-9

20th: EverStart pro Randall Tharp, Gardendale, Ala., 10 bass, 32-8

Scotch Blue Painter’s Tape pro Ray Scheide of Dover, Ark., caught the Snickers® Big Bass of 8-9 on the pro side and won $500.

Overall there were 655 bass weighing 1,897 pounds, 7 ounces caught by 146 pros Friday. The catch included 113 five-bass limits.

Pros are competing for a top award of up to $125,000 this week plus valuable points in the hope of qualifying for the Forrest Wood Cup presented by Walmart, the world championship of bass fishing. This year’s Cup will be in Hot Springs, Ark., Aug. 11-14 on Lake Ouachitawhere pros are competing for a top prize of $600,000 – the sport’s biggest award. Pro anglers are also vying for the prestigious 2011 Walmart FLW Tour Angler of the Year presented by Kellogg’s that will be determined by the most points accumulated over the six Tour Majors with the winner receiving $100,000 for their accomplishment.

Keeton Blaylock of Benton, Ark., leads the Co-angler Division with an opening-round total of 10 bass weighing 30 pounds even followed by Alton Lackie of Germantown, Tenn., in second place with 10 bass weighing 29-0.

Rounding out the top 20 co-anglers are:

3rd: Mark Horton, Nicholasville, Ky., 10 bass, 29-0

4th: Caleb Kuphall, Mukwonago, Wis., nine bass, 25-9

5th: Sean Stepp, Stafford, Va., eight bass, 24-14

6th: Brent Evans, Calvert City, Ky., nine bass, 24-5

7th: Patrick Stines, Granger, Ind., 10 bass, 24-3

8th: Philip Jarabeck, Lynchburg, Va., eight bass, 24-0

9th: Rich Dalbey, Greeneville, Texas, 10 bass, 23-13

10th: Derrick Snavely, Rogersville, Tenn., seven bass, 23-12

11th: Greg Schultz, Wyzata, Minn., eight bass, 23-4

12th: Jade Keeton, Florence, Ala., 10 bass, 21-11

13th: Patrick Bone, Cleveland, Ga., seven bass, 21-10

14th: Jesse Schultz, New Albany, Ind., seven bass, 20-15

15th: Justin Sward, Vancleave, Miss., eight bass, 20-11

16th: Eric Schultz, Minnetonka, Minn., nine bass, 20-11

17th: Spencer Shuffield, Bismarck, Ark., seven bass, 20-2

18th: Rick Etherton, Friendsville, Tenn., seven bass, 19-3

19th: Ralph Myhlhousen, Council Bluffs, Iowa, seven bass, 17-14

20th: Brant Grimm, Kingsport, Tenn., seven bass, 17-13

Bone caught the Snickers® Big Bass of 7-13 in the co-angler division to win $250.

Overall there were 398 bass weighing 986 pounds, 4 ounces caught by 139 co-anglers Friday. The catch included 35 five-bass limits.

Co-anglers are fishing for a top award of $25,000 this week plus valuable points that could help them qualify for the 2011 Forrest Wood Cup.The Walmart FLW Tour Co-angler of the Year presented by Kellogg’s will be determined by the most points accumulated over the six Tour Majors and the winner will receive a new Ranger 198VX with a 200-horsepower Evinrude or Mercury outboard.

Anglers will take off from Chester Frost Park located at 2318 Gold Point Circle North in Hixson, Tenn., at 7 each morning. Saturday and Sunday’s final weigh-in will be held at the Chattanooga Convention Center located at 1150 Carter St. in Chattanooga beginning at 4 p.m.

Fans will be treated to the FLW Outdoors Expo at the Chattanooga Convention Center on Saturday and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. prior to the final weigh-ins. The first 300 kids 14 and under on Sunday will receive a free rod and reel combo compliments of US 101. Fans can also register to win a Can-Am ATV courtesy of WDSI Fox 61 which will be given away following the final weigh-in. Fans will also be treated to a free performance on Sunday at 3 p.m. by Thompson Square, who currently have one of the hottest hits on the radio with “Are You Gonna Kiss Me or Not.” The Expo includes Ranger boat simulators, the opportunity to interact with professional anglers, enjoy interactive games, activities and giveaways provided by sponsors, and fans can learn more about the sport of fishing and other outdoor activities. All activities are free and open to the public. For a complete schedule of events, visit

Coverage of the Lake Chickamauga tournament will be broadcast in high-definition (HD) on VERSUS. “FLW Outdoors” will air May 29 from 1 to 2 p.m. ET. “FLW Outdoors,” hosted by Jason Harper, is broadcast to more than 500 million households worldwide.

For regular updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow FLW Outdoors on Facebook at and on Twitter at

About FLW Outdoors

FLW Outdoors is the largest fishing tournament organization in the world offering anglers worldwide the opportunity to compete for millions over the course of 191 tournaments in 2011. FLW Outdoors has taken fishing mainstream with the world’s richest fantasy sports game, FLW Fantasy Fishing presented by Straight Talk, where competitors can play for free as well as sign up for Player’s Advantage to gain an edge. For more information about FLW Outdoors and FLW Fantasy Fishing, browse or visit

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