BROOKELAND, Texas (Jan. 4, 2021) – Derek Mundy of Broaddus, Texas, brought a five-bass limit to the scale Saturday weighing a staggering 40 pounds, 10 ounces to win the 2021 Phoenix Bass Fishing League presented by T-H Marine season opener at Sam Rayburn Reservoir in Brookeland, Texas. Mundy earned $7,000 for his victory.
Mundy said he found his fish in practice but didn’t realize just how good his spot was going to be.
“You can’t look on the graph and see 40 pounds, but I knew I could have a good bag if they bit,” Mundy said. “It’s not guaranteed you’re going to roll up to your first spot and catch 30, much less 40.
“I caught the first four on a big crankbait and they busted up a bit,” Mundy said. “Then I pulled out a jig and caught the last one. I caught those five, all on the first stop, in about 20 minutes.”
After catching five giants, including a 11-pound, 10-ounce largemouth, Mundy said he felt he could relax.
“I took it easy and went to some Plan B stuff to try to get my co-angler on fish, but it never worked out – the wind got up pretty bad in the afternoon,” he admitted.
Weighing his fish as soon as he was allowed, Mundy said he was content to wait for the weigh-in to conclude before collecting his check.
“It’s the biggest bag I’ve ever caught,” said Mundy, who makes his living working on oil pipelines. “It felt good. I didn’t realize they were that big until I was checking on them to make sure they were doing alright in the livewell, but even then, I didn’t realize I had 40 pounds.”
The top 10 boaters finished the tournament as follows:
1st: Derek Mundy of Broaddus, Texas, five bass, 40-10, $7,0002nd: Cameron Mattison of Bossier City, La., five bass, 28-6, $3,000
3rd: Tommy Loving of Cypress, Texas, five bass, 22-14, $2,000
4th: Wyatt Frankens of Corrigan, Texas, five bass, 17-11, $1,400
5th: Jimmy Hickman of Shreveport, La., five bass, 17-8, $1,200
6th: Cannon Bird of Marshall, Texas, five bass, 16–6, $1,100
7th: Chris McCall of Woodville, Texas, five bass, 15-15, $1,000
8th: Richard Ballard of Sulphur, La., five bass, 15-12, $1,400
9th: Dicky Newberry of Houston, Texas, five bass, 15-0, $800
10th: Bobby Vice of Orange, Texas, five bass, 14-11, $665
10th: Travis Franks of Lake Charles, La., five bass, 14–11, $665
Mundy’s 11-pound, 10-ounce largemouth was also good for the day’s Boater Big Bass award of $1,000.
Ballard took home an extra $500 as the highest finishing Phoenix MLF BIG5 Contingency Bonus member. Boaters are eligible to win up to an extra $7,000 per event in each Phoenix Bass Fishing League presented by T-H Marine tournament if all requirements are met. More information on the Phoenix MLF BIG5 Bonus contingency program can be found at PhoenixBassBoats.com.
Michael Petras of Biloxi, Mississippi, won the Co-angler Division and $3,000 Saturday after catching a five-bass limit weighing 16 pounds even.
The top 10 co-anglers finished as follows:
1st: Michael Petras of Biloxi, Miss., five bass, 16-0, $3,000
2nd: Shane Stoddard of Hot Springs, Ark., four bass, 15-4, $2,000
3rd: Michael Horne of Dodson, La., five bass, 14-10, $1,000
4th: Carson Dillinger of Bloomburg, Texas, five bass, 12-70
5th: Tracy Hawkins of Corsicana, Texas, three bass, 11-15, $600
6th: Julio Garza of Houston, Texas, five bass, 11-5, $550
7th: Steve Lee of Benton, Ark., five bass, 11-2, $500
8th: Daniel Bryant of LaFayette, La., five bass, 10-10, $450
9th: Ryker Holmes of Arlington, Texas, five bass, 10-7, $400
10th: John Webb of Fort Smith, Ark., four bass, 10-4, $332
10th: Greg Boik of College Station, Texas, five bass, 10-4, $332
Stoddard caught the largest bass in the Co-angler Division, a fish weighing in at 9 pounds, 15 ounces. The catch earned him the day’s Co-angler Big Bass award of $500.
The 2021 Phoenix Bass Fishing League presented by T-H Marine on Sam Rayburn Reservoir was hosted by the Jasper County Development District.
The top 45 boaters and co-anglers in the Cowboy Division based on point standings, along with the five winners of each qualifying event, will be entered in the Oct. 21-23 Phoenix Bass Fishing League Regional Championship on Lake Ouachita in Mount Ida, Arkansas hosted by Visit Hot Springs. Boaters will compete for a $60,000 prize package, including a new Phoenix 819 Pro bass boat with a 200-horsepower Mercury outboard and $10,000, while co-anglers will fish for a new Phoenix 819 Pro bass boat with a 200-horsepower Mercury s outboard.
The 2021 MLF Phoenix Bass Fishing League presented by T-H Marine is a 24-division circuit devoted to weekend anglers, with 128 tournaments throughout the season, five qualifying events in each division. The top 45 boaters and co-anglers from each division, along with the five winners of the qualifying events, will advance to one of six regional tournaments where they are competing to finish in the top six, which then qualifies them for one of the longest-running championships in all of competitive bass fishing – the Phoenix Bass Fishing League All-American.
The 2021 Phoenix Bass Fishing League All-American will be held June 3-5 at Douglas Lake in Dandridge, Tennessee and hosted by the Jefferson County Department of Tourism. The top 45 boaters and co-anglers plus tournament winners from each Phoenix Bass Fishing League division earn priority entry into the Toyota Series, the pathway to the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit and ultimately the MLF Bass Pro Tour.