CLEWISTON, FL – How was your weekend? Did you enjoy the sunshine in flip flops and shorts? Spend it on the water filling the well with giant bass? Or maybe pocketing $35,000 on a day you’ll never forget? Well, on Lake Okeechobee in December, that’s how we deck the halls.

The 2022 Roland Martin Marine Center Series Championship presented by HUK made dreams come true for Jerod Boltz and Jon Bowman with a giant stocking stuffer worth $35,000 that is sure to have them laughing all the way to the bank this holiday season.

Boltz and Bowman came into Championship Sunday sitting in 16th place with a respectable 17.5 pounds. So a decent day could mean a nice payday for the cousins. With almost 30 pounds on the final day, they were everything but decent.

“The first thing this morning, we pulled up to our spot and I cracked a six right off the bat on a chatterbait,” said Boltz. “Then I said man, we need to put on another chatterbait.”

That first bass was followed by another six pounder, and by 8 o’clock, they had practically 29 pounds.

“We fished speed worms and chatterbaits and flipped outside cattails on day one,”said Boltz. “The spot we were in yesterday, I thought we could really get a good bag but it just didn’t produce.”

That gave them almost 18 pounds but hardly a favorite to claim the Championship on Sunday. Then, the most unlikely thing happened.

“We were fishing the ugliest, nastiest things you could imagine,” said Bowman. “We were fishing dead cattails in absolute muck.”

That led to a 8.15 pound kicker that gave them a nice cushion and put their names on the biggest check paid out in Florida for a team tournament series.

Just under 3 pounds back was the second place team of Kelley Autrey and Cody Davis that turned 44.55 pounds into a $10,000 payday. And rounding out the top three was the always dangerous team of Kail Stevens and Bradley MacQueen that had another solid championship finish and collected $5,000 with 41.82 pounds and the 3rd place finish.

As the highest paying team tournament trail in Florida, the payouts continued deep into the 133 team field for the final event of the 2022 season.

The U.S. Sugar Big Bass put another $500 in the winner’s pockets with their 8.15 pound giant. The 2nd Big Bass on Championship Sunday of 7.05 pounds earned the team of Benjamin Wright and Steve Connell $100 Gambler Bucks. U.S. Sugar also awarded $500 to Brad Gibson and Colton Heston for the Day One Big Bass of 7.51. And the team of Justin Morgan and Garrett Folbrecht earned $100 Gambler Bucks for their Day One 2nd Big Bass of 6.89. Boat Covers Anywhere awarded Angie Holley $250 for her 5.05 bass as the biggest bass caught by a female angler. They also awarded Camryn Prowant $100 for her 3.75 bass that was the 2nd biggest bass caught by a female angler. As the highest finishing team to take the stage in HUK Gear, the team of Kelly Autrey and Cody Davis collected $250 from our presenting sponsor. The Mercury contingency award of $250 went to the highest finishing qualifying team of Kail Stevens and Bradley MacQueen. The highest finishing youth angler, Dalton Ryburn, received $100 from Mercury as well. Melinda Markley received $100 from Mary Ann Martin as the highest finishing female angler. Dell Hatfield and Rick Wilhelm earned $500 as the highest finishing Gilbert Chevrolet owner. And last for bringing in the least, the team of Shawn Callahan and Matt Byrd turned two limits weighing just 11.64 pounds into $500 from AV Inspection as the smallest limits weighed.

That brings an end to the 2022 Roland Martin Marine Center Series Season. Wait until you hear what we have in store for 2023. Spoiler alert: think big!

Until then, we wish you all a safe and Happy Holidays and a wonderful New Year.