There were two teams of winners as the 7th season of the North Central Louisiana division of the Fishers of Men came to a close last Saturday. The FOM final touranment was held on Caney Lake under overcast skies and temperatures in the mid-70s.
The tournament winners were Craig Parker and Dusty Mobley, who weighed in four bass at 11.61 pounds. They found fish on jigs and crankbaits around brush at 15-17 feet, but only four of 14 fish caught during the day were not in the slot. Those four were enough to claim first place and a payout of $2,500.
The other set of winners were Kenny and Courtney Harris, who came into the tournament holding the
season points lead. After nearly four hours of fishing, the Harris’ had yet to put the first fish in the boat and it seemed as though the hopes of taking the season points champion title for the second consecutive year were quickly fading. However, their persistence began to pay off around 10:00 a.m. when they finally got the first bite; the pressure was far from over as they continued to target fish in depths of 4-12 feet, casting a wide variety of baits including shaky head worms, jigs and crankbaits. It wasn’t until 30 minutes before the conclusion of the tournament that the Harris’ caught their largest fish that rounded out their 5-fish limit of 10.24 pounds. With this weight, the father/son team placed 3rd in the tournament and retained their standing in the points race, earning them the title of season points champions. In addition to the $590 for 3rd place, the Harris’ received an $865 points championship payout and an automatic berth to the national championship.
The 2nd place team of Tyler Stewart and Blake Alford caught a similar number of fish using jigs and Carolina-rigged soft plastics around deep brush. With four fish weighing 10.35 pounds, the anglers earned $568. Other money winners in the tournament included: 4th place—Corey Harris and Matt Willis (4 fish, 10.21 pounds) and 5th place—Todd Wolfe and Jay Moore (5 fish, 9.81 pounds).
Sixth place and winners of the big fish prize for the tournament was the team of Ches Struben and Jeremy Mason with a 7.09 pound lunker caught by Mason on a jig in the last hour of the tournament. With the one other fish weighed, the team’s 2 fish totaled 8.01 pounds.
The pre-tournament meeting held the evening before the event was hosted by First Baptist Church of Calhoun and Ron Huey served as guest speaker. At the conclusion of his inspiring message, one angler recommitted his life to Christ. In total for the season, there were five first-time professions of faith and 22 others that recommitted their lives to the Lord.
The next stop for Fishers of Men anglers will be the District Championship scheduled for the 1st and 2nd of November on the Red River. 34 teams qualified for the two-day event in which they will compete with teams from across Louisiana and Mississippi for cash prizes and a berth in the National Championship.
The FOM Stren Team Series National Championship for the previous year’s team trail was held May 16-18 on Clarks Hill Reservoir outside of Augusta, Georgia. Three teams from the North Central Louisiana division competed in the event including the team of Mark Price and Martin Elshout. Competing against 134 of the top teams across the nation, Price and Elshout posted a three-day total weight of 43.42 pounds and finished 3rd place overall earning them a payout of $4,350.
Fishers of Men would like to take this opportunity to thank all the fine national sponsors that make Fishers of Men possible: Skeeter Boats, Yamaha, Stren, Pflueger, Strike King Lure Company, Nester Hosiery, Marshall’s Marine, Kings Home, Lowrance Electronics, Power-Pole, Duckett Fishing, Buckeye Lures, Keelshield, Solar Bat, Jacobs Glass, and Rejuvenade, Berkley, and Hydrowave. The North Central Louisiana Division would like to thank our local sponsors that were instrumental in bringing the Fishers of Men National Tournament Trail to local anglers: Crawford Financial; Ludwig Brothers Marine; Community Trust Bank; Brown’s Landing; Farmerville Motors; Southern Steel Fabricators; McKinney Honda; KXKZ-107.5; James Davis Construction; First National Bank; McMillan Painting; Honey Hole Tackle Shop; PriceRight Apothecary Plus; Ruston Glass & Mirror; Radian L. Hennigan, CPA; Sherwin-Williams; and Ponchatoulas. For more information about the tournament trail or if you would like to learn how you can partner with the division as a sponsor, contact Tournament Director Brent Crawford: (318) 548-4196 or firstname.lastname@example.org.