Maiden’s Morgan Takes Top Spot at Phoenix Bass Fishing League Event on High Rock Lake

Category: article

 Apr 26th, 2022 by Keith Worrall 

Modified Apr 26th, 2022 at 6:25 AM

Boater Brian Morgan of Maiden, North Carolina, and Strike-King co-angler Frank White of Marion, North Carolina.

SALISBURY, N.C. (April 25, 2022) – Boater Brian Morgan of Maiden, North Carolina, caught five bass Saturday weighing 23 pounds, 9 ounces, to win the MLF Phoenix Bass Fishing League Presented by T-H Marine on High Rock Lake. The tournament was the second event for the Bass Fishing League North Carolina Division. Morgan earned $5,304 for his victory.

“How this tournament unfolded was something else,” Morgan said. “I was very young when my grandpa started me fishing. All we ever did was throw a vintage Heddon Chugger Jr. topwater bait. The first box I pulled out of my boat and opened up had four Heddon Chuggers staring me in the face. So I said, ‘This one’s for you, Pop.’ I pulled one out and tied it on. One of my buddies looked at it and said, ‘What is that?’ I told him, ‘I’ll tell you after the tournament.’”

The vintage bait paid off, as Morgan caught a bass weighing 4 pounds, 7 ounces on his third cast of the day. The Chugger continued to produce keepers throughout the day – all 15 fish he caught during the tournament were keepers.

“I know for a fact Pop was looking down on me,” Morgan said. “When I left Flat Swamp, I had 19 pounds in the box and every fish except two had come on that Chugger. And two of those were the biggest fish I had.

“This is my most memorable win,” Morgan added. “On my Facebook I posted, ‘Pop, this one is for you. I love you up in heaven.’ I teared up out on the water. It hit me pretty hard.”

The top 10 boaters finished the tournament in:

1st: Brian Morgan, Maiden, N.C., five bass, 23-9, $5,304
2nd: David Wright, Lexington, N.C., five bass, 22-7, $3,152 (includes $500 Phoenix MLF Contingency Bonus)
3rd: Chris Baldwin, Lexington, N.C., five bass, 19-0, $1,968
4th: John Wiese, Charlotte, N.C., five bass, 18-11, $1,238
5th: Michael Belter, Reidsville, N.C., five bass, 18-4, $1,361
6th: Doug Young, Salisbury, N.C., five bass, 16-9, $972
7th: Jake Monti, Mooresville, N.C., five bass, 16-4, $884
8th: Ben Robertson, Walnut Cove, N.C., five bass, 15-10, $996
9th: Mark Cannon, Youngsville, N.C., four bass, 15-7, $707
10th: Bradley Staley, Pleasant Garden, N.C., five bass, 15-3, $619

Complete results can be found at MajorLeagueFishing.com.

Noah Beck of Lexington, North Carolina, had a largemouth that weighed 7 pounds, 4 ounces that was the heaviest of the event in the Boater Division and earned the day’s Berkley Big Bass Boater award of $835.

Frank White of Marion, North Carolina, won the Strike King Co-angler Division and $2,631 Saturday after catching five bass weighing 21 pounds, 6 ounces.

The top 10 Strike King co-anglers were:

1st: Frank White, Marion, N.C., five bass, 21-6, $2,631
2nd: Gregory Haverlock, Concord, N.C., four bass, 13-10, $1,315
3rd: Eric O’Connell, Harrisburg, N.C., three bass, 11-9, $877
4th: Wes House, Knightdale, N.C., five bass, 10-12, $614
5th: Kolton Hawks, Thomasville, N.C., four bass, 10-6, $526
6th: Eric Osborne, Jefferson, N.C., two bass, 9-13, $870
6th: Robert Raymond, Farmville, Va., five bass, 9-13, $560
8th: Samuel Jones, Fuquay Varina, N.C., three bass, 8-9, $373
8th: Lewis Brown, Asheboro, N.C., three bass, 8-9, $373
10th: Justin Bach, Kannapolis, N.C., three bass, 8-8, $291
10th: Robert Adams, Greensboro, N.C., two bass, 8-8, $291

Osborne caught the largest bass in the Co-angler Division, a fish weighing in at 6 pounds, 2 ounces. The catch earned him the day’s Berkley Big Bass Co-angler award of $410.

After two events, Jake Monti of Mooresville, North Carolina, leads the Bass Fishing League North Carolina Division Boater Angler of the Year (AOY) race with 494 points, while Frank White of Marion, North Carolina, leads the Strike King Co-Angler Division AOY race with 488 points.

The top 45 boaters and co-anglers in the region based on point standings, along with the five winners in each qualifying event, will be entered in the Oct. 20-22 Bass Fishing League Regional Championship on the James River in Richmond, Virginia. Boaters will compete for a top award of $60,000, including a new Phoenix 819 Pro with a 200-horsepower Mercury outboard and $10,000, while co-anglers will fish for a new Phoenix 819 Pro with a 200-horsepower Mercury outboard.

The 2022 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 Strike King co-anglers from each division, along with the five winners of the qualifying events, will advance to one of six Regional Championships 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 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 boaters and Strike King co-anglers plus tournament winners from each Phoenix Bass Fishing League division will also earn priority entry into the MLF Toyota Series, the pathway 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 T-H Marine include: 4WP, 13 Fishing, Abu Garcia, AFTCO, A.R.E. 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, T-H Marine, Toyota, Wiley X, YETI and Yo-Zuri.

For complete details and updated tournament information, visit MajorLeagueFishing.com. For regular Bass Fishing League updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow MLF5’s social media outlets at Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.

About Major League Fishing
Major League Fishing (MLF) is the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, producing more than 250 events annually at some of the most prestigious fisheries in the world, while broadcasting to America’s living rooms on CBS, the Discovery Channel, the Outdoor Channel, CBS Sports Network, the World Fishing Network, and on-demand on MyOutdoorTV (MOTV). Headquartered in Tulsa, Oklahoma, with offices in Benton, Kentucky, the MLF roster of bass anglers includes the world’s top pros and more than 30,000 competitors in all 50 states and 13 countries. In 2019, MLF expanded its portfolio of catch, weigh, and immediately release events to include the sport’s strongest five-biggest-fish format tournament circuits. Since its founding in 2011, MLF has advanced the sport of competitive fishing through its premier television broadcasts and livestreams, and is dedicated to improving the quality of life for bass through research, education, fisheries enhancement, and fish care.

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