Lithia’s Rocamora Claims Victory at Phoenix Bass Fishing League Tournament on Lake Toho
Winning boater Garrett Rocamora of Lithia, Florida, and winning co-angler Gary Schild of Mundelein, Illinois.
Illinois Schild wins Strike King Co-Angler Division
KISSIMMEE, Fla. (February 16, 2022) – Boater Garrett Rocamora from Lithia, Floridacaught a limit five bass on Saturday weighing 18 pounds, 8 ounces, to win the MLF Phoenix Bass Fishing League presented by TH Marine on Lake Toho . The event, hosted by Experience Kissimmee and the Kissimmee Sports Commission, was the season opener for the Gator division of the Bass Fishing League presented by Revital Outdoors. Rocamora won $7,000 for her victory.
“Last week I fished another big event and did some good things. Then I worked all week and had no practice, but I wanted to start again with the same strategy. “, said Rocamora, who earned his first career victory in MLF competition. “I spend a lot of time fishing here – these are my home waters and it is my favorite place in the world to fish.
“I went straight to the lock and locked down to Lake Kissimmee,” Rocamora continued. “I fished the north end, targeting a few shallow hydrilla flats which are normal pre-spawn staging areas. I cast a black and blue 3/8 oz Z-Man ChatterBait Jack Hammer with a Little EZ Player and one 13 Fishing Engine Special jerk bait.
Rocamora said he had a “milk run” of hydrilla flats he was targeting, making seven or eight different saves before noon. He spent the afternoon throwing pads with a Player’s big aceand said he also cruised with two strong 3¾ pound guards on a 3/8 ounce Outkast Tackle RTX Flipping Jig with a Gambler Little EZ.
The top 10 boaters finished the tournament in:
1st: Garrett Rocamora, Lithia, Florida, five bass, 18-8, $7,000
2nd: Cody Bertrand, Dyer, Ind., five bass, 18-6, $3,000
3rd: Arnie Lane, Lakeland, Fla., five bass, 18-2, $2,000
4th: Robert Pigue, Sorrento, Fla., five bass, 17-11, $2,400
5th: Chris Neau, Gretna, La., five bass, 17-5, $1,200
6th: Max Moneuse, Longboat Key, Florida, five bass, 17-3, $1,100
7th: Raymond Trudeau, Saint Cloud, Fla., five bass, 16-12, $1,000
8th: Austin Schroeder, Zephyrhills, Fla., five bass, 15-13, $900
9th: Karlis Dipaul, Okeechobee, Fla., five bass, 15-10, $800
10th: Jonathan Semento, Okahumpka, Fla., five low, 15-5, $1,200 (includes $500 Phoenix MLF bonus)
Full results are available at MajorLeagueFishing.com.
Pigue sailed an 11-pound, 9-ounce Giant that was the heaviest of the event in the Boater Division and won the $1,000 Berkley Big Bass Boater of the Day award.
Gary Schild of Mundelein, Ill., won the Strike King Co-angler Division and $3,000 on Saturday after catching five bass weighing 16 pounds, 1 ounce.
Strike King’s top 10 co-anglers were:
1st: Gary Schild, Mundelein, Illinois, five bass, 16-1, $3,000
2nd: Giovanni Pena, Davenport, Fla., five bass, 15-3, $1,500
3rd: Ernie Thompson, Anthony, Florida, five bass, 15-1, $1,000
4th: James Staton, Sorrento, Fla., five bass, 14-14, $700
5th: Luis Lindstedt, Melbourne, FL, five bass, 12-13, $600
6th: Mack Traynor, Hanover, Minnesota, four bass, 12-3, $550
7th: David Dimauro, Longwood, Fla., five bass, 12-1, $500
8th: Chris Westhelle, Sanford, Fla., five bass, 11-0, $450
9th: Adam Sangster, Sanford, Fla., four bass, 10-12, $400
10th: Bobby McMullin, Pevely, Mo., four bass, 10-11, $350
Anthony Cruz of Mount Dora, Florida caught the biggest bass in the co-angler division, a fish weighing even 8 pounds. The catch earned him the Berkley Big Bass Co-angler award of $250.
The top 45 boaters and co-fishermen in the region based on points standings, along with the five winners of each Gator Division presented by the Revital Outdoors qualifying event, will be entered into the Bass Fishing League Regional Championship from June 6 to October 8 on Lake Murray. in Prosperity, South Carolina. 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 2022 All-American will be held June 2-4 at Lake Hamilton in Hot Springs, Arkansas, and is hosted by the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism and Visit Hot Springs.
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, instagramand Youtube.