Wells and Howerton Tie For Co-angler Title

SALISBURY, N.C. (June 12, 2017) – Local angler Rodney Bell of Salisbury, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 19 pounds, 11 ounces, Saturday to win the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Piedmont Division tournament on High Rock Lake presented by Navionics. For his win, Bell netted $6,963.

“I spent the day in Flat Swamp Creek,” said Bell, who earned his fourth career-win in BFL competition. “I caught four of my seven keepers of out of some bushes, and the other three from docks. The water was pretty high, so I had to take the cover off of my motor to get under a bridge and access the areas I fished.”

Bell said he caught six fish on a D&L Lures Flipping Jig with a green-pumpkin Zoom Super Chunk Jr. trailer, and one on a War Eagle spinnerbait.

“The bushes were in the back of the creek and I caught my four early, within the first two hours,” said Bell. “Later on, after the bite died, I switched to docks. I was still in Flat Swamp, just closer to the mouth. The sun got up high and positioned bass under the docks in the shade and that’s where I caught them from.”

The top 10 boaters finished the tournament in:

1st:          Rodney Bell, Salisbury, N.C., five bass, 19-11, $4,963 + $2,000 Ranger Cup Bonus

2nd:         James Funk, Portsmouth, Va., five bass, 18-13, $2,381

3rd:          David Wright, Lexington, N.C., five bass, 16-10, $2,295

4th:          Chris Baldwin, Lexington, N.C., five bass, 16-6, $1,111

5th:          Shawn Hammack, Gasburg, Va., four bass, 15-1, $913

5th:          Scott Henley, Randleman, N.C., five bass, 15-1, $913

7th:          Kevin Chandler, New London, N.C., five bass, 14-15, $894

8th:          Jackson Pleasant, Raleigh, N.C., four bass, 14-2, $714

9th:          Michael Belter, Reidsville, N.C., five bass, 14-0, $635

10th:        Bryan Elrod, Mechanicsville, Va., five bass, 13-6, $556

Complete results can be found at

Wright caught a bass weighing 7 pounds, 6 ounces – the heaviest of the event in the Boater Division – which earned him the day’s Boater Big Bass award of $710.

Robert Wells of Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina, and James Howerton of Danville, Virginia, tied for the Co-angler Division title after each weighing bass totaling 9 pounds, 14 ounces. For their efforts, each angler was awarded $1,786.

The top 10 co-anglers were:

1st:          Robert Wells, Kill Devil Hills, N.C., three bass, 9-14, $1,786

1st:          James Howerton, Danville, Va., four bass, 9-14, $1,786

3rd:          Chip Crews, Trinity, N.C., three bass, 9-9, $791

4th:          Greg Deal, China Grove, N.C., four bass, 8-5, $556

5th:          Robert Tysinger, Coats, N.C., two bass, 8-3, $676

6th:          Mark Davis, Bear Creek, N.C., three bass, 7-11, $487

7th:          Chris Napier, Virginia Beach, Va., two bass, 7-7, $752

8th:          Scott Spencer, Raleigh, N.C., four bass, 7-0, $357

9th:          Anthony Rife, Max Meadows, Va., three bass, 6-15, $318

10th:        Alden Patterson, Mebane, N.C., two bass, 6-13, $278

Napier caught the largest bass in the Co-angler Division, a fish weighing 5 pounds, 13 ounces. The catch earned him the day’s Co-angler Big Bass award of $355.

The top 45 boaters and co-anglers in the region based on point standings, along with the five winners in each qualifying event, will be entered in the Oct. 12-14 BFL Regional Championship on the James River in Williamsburg, Virginia. Boaters will compete for a top award of a Ranger Z518C with a 200-horsepower Evinrude outboard and $20,000, while co-anglers will fish for a new Ranger Z518C with a 200-horsepower Evinrude outboard.

The 2017 BFL is a 24-division circuit devoted to weekend anglers, with 128 tournaments throughout the season, five qualifying events in each division. The top 45 boaters and co-anglers from each division, along with the five winners of the qualifying events, will advance to one of six 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 BFL All-American. Top performers in the BFL can move up to the Costa FLW Series or even the FLW Tour.

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