Bass Pro Shops: US Open Update & Kids’ Boat Giveaway
Oct 20th, 2021 by Keith Worrall
Modified Oct 20th, 2021 at 12:45 PM
OklahomaFishing BuddiesWin Top Prizes at Bass Pro Shops US Open RegionalQualifying Event on Grand Lake
Ultimate customer appreciation event benefits conservationTulsa-areateamcollects$50,000 first-place check with Top 40 teams advancing to National Championship on Missouri’s Table Rock Lake this fall
GROVE, Okla.–Amateur fishing buddies James Wayne and Creston Harrelclaimed first placeat the regional qualifying event for the Bass Pro Shops US Open National Bass Fishing Amateur Team Championships–a first-of-its-kind amateur fishing tournament offering the biggest payout in freshwater fishing history –on Saturday, October 16, on Grand Lake.Wayne from Vinita, Okla.,and Harrel from Claremore, Okla.,fished from a Rangerboat and hauled in a five-fish catch weighing in at 17.06poundsto top the 250-team field. They collect a first-place prize of $50,000 and are one of 40 teams to qualify for the National Championship on Nov. 19-21 at Big Cedar Lodge on Missouri’s famed Table Rock Lake. The National Championship will be broadcast internationally on NBC and carries a $1 million cash prize to the winning team.
Diesel Everest (center), a 10-year-old angler from Hobbs, N.M.,fished with father Richard Everestand won the Youth category.
Brody Hardaway(right), a 17-year-old angler from Broken Bow, Okla.,fished with father Eric Hardaway and won the Juniorcategory.
“We are thankful to everyone at Bass Pro Shops for putting this on,” first-place winner James Wayne said. “We look forward to seeing everyone on Table Rock.”Angler PrizesThe top 40 teams received a payout and qualified for the National Championship. Additional prizes were awarded for catching the biggest bass within the following categories:●Biggest Bass:The biggest bass (5.46pounds) was caught by longtime fishing buddies Steve Ortiz and Scott Melton from Lawrence, Kan.,and Lake of the Ozarks, Mo., respectively.Ortiz and Meltonearned $5,460for the massive catch ($1,000 per pound), will receive a replica mount of the bass with a duplicate going on display at Bass Pro Shops in Broken Arrow,Okla.,and was entered into a drawing for a Nitro Z20 boat.
Longtime fishing buddies Steve Ortiz and Scott Melton, respectively, landed a 5.46-pound Grand Lake whopper to win the Biggest Bass category and take home $5,460.Fishing buddies James Brockand veteran Allen Matlaock (right)from Tulsa, Okla.,won the Veteran category with a 5-pound bass.
Youth Angler:Diesel Everest, a 10-year-old angler from Hobbs, N.M., fishedwith dad Richard Everestand earned a $1,000 Bass Pro Shops gift card for catching the biggest bass (3.02pounds) among anglers ages 0-10. ●Junior
Angler:Brody Hardaway, a 17-year-old angler from Broken Bow, Okla.,fished with dad Eric Hardawayand earned a $1,000Bass Pro Shops gift card for catching the biggest bass (3.07pounds) among anglers ages 11-17.
VeteranAngler:Marine veteran Allen Matlaock and his best friend and longtime fishing buddy James Brock both from Tulsa, Okla., earned a $1,000 Bass Pro Shops gift card for catching the biggest bass (5 pounds) by a Veteranteam. Benefiting the Future of FishingThe Grand Lakequalifying eventbenefits conservation with proceeds supporting The National Fish Habitat Partnership. Thanks to Bass Pro Shops and Toyota, 100 percent of all entry fees –over $1 million throughout the tournament –will fundcritical fisheries conservationand habitat projects nationwide.
Anglers and fans enjoyed meeting fishing legends Edwin Evers, Roland Martin and Jimmy Houston,as well as free activities designed to help families get excited about the outdoors.
In keeping with alongstanding commitment to conservation, Johnny Morris and Bass Pro Shops partnered with the OklahomaDepartment of Wildlife Conservation to help ensure all fish caught during the Bass Pro Shops US Open regional qualifying event onGrand Lake were released responsibly following a fish-friendly weigh-in.Remaining Regional Qualifying EventNov. 17 –Bull Shoals Lake, Arkansas (registration closed)To learn more about the Bass Pro Shops US Open, visit www.basspro.com/usopen.