Sheridan’s Craven Claims Victory at Phoenix Bass Fishing League Event on Lake Ouachita
“I started fishing for standing timber with a bit of weed mixed in with some rock,” said Craven, who earned his first Phoenix Bass Fishing League win. “My first fish was a 6-pounder, and the next cast was a 5-pounder.”
Craven said the action slowed down a bit, but he managed to catch two 2½-pound bass on one Queen Tackle Tungsten Hammerhead Rattling Football Jig for four fish in the tank. He then changed strategy and targeted brush piles and rock embankments. Craven said he stopped on a steep cliff and sat in 70 feet of water and used his Garmin Panoptix LiveScope to locate a standing piece of wood in 40 feet of water that had a good fish in it.
“I threw the A-Rig and made it bite,” Craven said. “He was a 6-pound, 6-ounce fish. And that put me at 21-14 with 45 minutes left in the tournament.
“It was a chore for me,” Craven added. “I’ve only had five keeper bites all day.”
The top 10 boaters finished the tournament in:
1st: Jon Craven, Sheridan, Ark., five bass, 21-14, $7,296 (includes $2,500 Phoenix bonus)
2nd: Quincy Houchin, Mabelvale, Ark., five bass, 17-10, $1,996
2nd: Kanon Harmon, Benton, Ark., five bass, 17-10, $2,711
4th: Josh Hilton, Clarksville, Ark., five bass, 16-6, $1,119
5th: Timmy Poe, Bryant, Ark., five bass, 16-1, $1,159
6th: Justin Howard, Austin, Ark., five bass, 15-14, $839
6th: Bryer Pennington, Prescott, Ark., five bass, 15-14, $839
8th: Brian Bean, Hot Springs, Ark., four bass, 14-15, $719
9th: Derek Sandlin, Mount Ida, Ark., five bass, 14-14, $639
10th: Kevin Brown, Hot Springs, Ark., five bass, 14-13, $760
Full results are available at MajorLeagueFishing.com.
Harmon had a 6-pound, 7-ounce bigmouth that was the heaviest in the event in the Boater division and won the Berkley Big Bass Boater of the Day award of $715.
Timothy Preator of Hensley, Arkansas, won the Strike King Co-angler Division and $2,364 on Sunday after catching five bass weighing 18 pounds, 5 ounces.
Strike King’s top 10 co-anglers were:
1st: Timothy Preator, Hensley, Ark., five bass, 18-5, $2,364
2nd: Jonathan Simms, Hot Springs, Ark., five bass, 17-11, $1,182
3rd: Aaron Calvert, Russellville, Ark., five bass, 14-11, $788
4th: Briley Knowles, Texarkana, Ark., five bass, 14-9, $552
5th: Buck Blackwell, Pine Bluff, Ark., five bass, 12-15, $673
6th: Colton Welch, Leola, Ark., four bass, 10-3, $433
7th: Brian (Shane) Ray, Hot Springs, Ark., three bass, 9-7, $394
8th: Frank Reynolds, Bryant, Ark., five bass, 8-14, $355
9th: Blake Defoor, Waldron, Ark., four bass, 8-8, $315
10th: Nicholas Wade, Hot Springs, Ark., four bass, 8-5, $276
John McCullar of Benton, Arkansas, and Herbert Kimbrough of North Little Rock, Arkansas, each caught fish weighing 5 pounds, 4 ounces to split the Berkley Big Bass Co-angler of the Day award. McCullar and Kimbrough received $176.
The top 45 boaters and co-anglers in the region based on points standings, along with the five winners of each qualifying event, will be entered into the Bass Fishing League Regional Championship Oct. 20-22 on Grand Lake in Grove. , Oklahoma. 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.