Farmersburg’s Wilkinson Bests Field at the Phoenix Bass Fishing League event on the Ohio River

Ohio’s Zelinskas leads Strike King Co-Angler Division

LAWRENCEBERG, Ind. (June 27, 2022) – Boater Chris Wilkinson from Farmersburg, Indianacaught five bass on Saturday weighing 12 pounds, 9 ounces, to win the MLF Phoenix Bass Fishing League Presented by TH Marine on the Ohio River . The tournament was the second event for the Buckeye Division of the Bass Fishing League. Wilkinson earned $4,938 for her win.

“We started a little late in the fog and left a little later than planned, but I went to an area where I felt like there were better fish I could catch,” said Wilkinson, who now has seven BFL career wins.

Wilkinson said he focused on streams with breaks in the stream that featured rock and wood. A buzzbait depicted its fish early in the day before the sun was directly overhead.

“Later in the day I caught two of my best fish on a Honey Creek Tackle tube,” Wilkinson said. “I caught eight goalkeepers during the day.

“Every win is special,” added Wilkinson. “I was lucky enough to win seven, and you never know when one will be the last.”

The top 10 boaters finished the tournament in:

1st: Chris Wilkinson, Farmersburg, Indiana, five bass, 12-9, $4,938
2nd: Brian Wrobleski, Alexandria, Kentucky, five bass, 9-10, $3,714 (Includes $500 Phoenix MLF contingency bonus)
3rd: William Jackson, Lawrenceburg, Indiana, five bass, 9-0, $1,646
4th: Ryan Collins, Fairfield, Ohio, four bass, 8-15, $1,352
5th: Nathan Brown, five bass, 8-3, $988
6th: Kenny Dials, Gallipolis, Ohio, four basses, 7-15, $905
7th: Jeremy Higgins, Union, Ky., five bass, 7-7, $782
7th: Pat White, Batavia, Ohio, five bass, 7-7, $982
9th: Mark Dove, North Vernon, Ind., four bass, 7-6, $617
9th: Trevor Howard, four basses, 7-6, $617

Full results are available at MajorLeagueFishing.com.

Wrobleski caught a fish weighing 4 pounds, 11 ounces — the heaviest of the event in the Boater division — earning him the Berkley Big Bass Boater of the Day prize of $745.

Brian Zelinskas of Beavercreek, Ohio won the Strike King Co-angler Division and $2,469 on Saturday after catching five bass weighing 8 pounds.

Strike King’s top 10 co-anglers were:

1st: Brian Zelinskas, Beavercreek, Ohio, five bass, 8-0, $2,469
2nd: Ryan Zwick, Oxford, Ohio, four bass, 7-2, $1,435
3rd: Kyle Taylor, Sullivan, Ind., three bass, 5-12, $823
4th: Zach Smith, Flatwoods, Kentucky, three bass, 5-9, $948
5th: Austin Thome, Oxford, Ohio, four basses, 5-5, $494
6th: Brian Short, Oxford, Ohio, four bass, 5-4, $453
7th: Matt Luken, Independence, Kentucky, four bass, 4-15, $412
8th: Matt Fisher, three bass, 4-13, $820
9th: Douglas Shope, Troy, Ohio, three basses, 4-9, $329
10th: Marcus Dudley, Twinsburg, Ohio, two bass, 4-8, $288

Smith also caught the largest bass in the Co-angler division, a fish weighing 3 pounds, 9 ounces. The catch earned him the Berkley Big Bass Co-angler of the Day award of $372.

After two events, David Fricke of Hamilton, Ohio leads the Bass Fishing League Buckeye Division’s Boater Angler of the Year (AOY) race with 486 points, while Brian Zelinskas of Beavercreek, Ohio leads the Strike King Co-Angler race. AOY Division with 481 points.

The top 45 boaters and co-anglers in the region based on points standings, along with the five winners of each qualifying event, will compete in the Bass Fishing League Regional Championship October 20-22 on the James River in Richmond, in Virginia. Boaters will compete for a prize of $60,000, including a new Phoenix 819 Pro with a 200 horsepower Mercury outboard and $10,000, while fellow anglers will fish for a new Phoenix 819 Pro with a Mercury outboard of 200 horsepower.

The 2022 Phoenix Bass Fishing League presented by TH Marine is a 24-division circuit dedicated to weekend anglers, with 128 tournaments throughout the season, five qualifying events in each division. The top 45 Strike King boaters and co-fishermen in each division, along with the five winners of the qualifying events, will advance to one of six Regional Championships where they compete to finish in the top six, which then qualifies them for one of the oldest championships in all of competitive bass fishing – the Phoenix Bass Fishing League All-American.

The top 45 Strike King boaters and co-fishermen as well as tournament winners from each division of the Phoenix Bass Fishing League will also gain priority entry into the MLF Toyota Series, the path to the MLF Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit and ultimately the MLF Bass Pro Tour.

Proud sponsors of the 2022 MLF Phoenix Bass Fishing League presented by TH Marine include: 4WP, 13 Fishing, Abu Garcia, AFTCO, ARE Truck Caps, B&W Trailer Hitches, Berkley, Black Rifle Coffee, E3, Epic Baits, Favorite Fishing, Gary Yamamoto Baits, General Tire, Lew’s, Lowrance, Lucas Oil, Mercury, Mossy Oak, Onyx, Phoenix, Polaris, Power-Pole, Revital Outdoors, Strike King, Tackle Warehouse, TH Marine, Toyota, Wiley X, YETI and Yo-Zuri .

For more details and up-to-date tournament information, visit MajorLeagueFishing.com. For regular Bass Fishing League updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow MLF5’s social media at Facebook, instagram and Youtube.

Robert A. Glidden