Scheide Wins Walmart FLW Tour Walmart Open on Beaver Lake

Category: press release

 May 17th, 2009 by OutdoorsFIRST 

Modified May 17th, 2009 at 12:00 AM

Rogers, Ark. (May 17, 2009) – Team BP pro Ray Scheide of Dover, Ark., caught a final-round total of 10 bass weighing 21 pounds, 1 ounce to win $200,000 in the $1.1 million Walmart FLW Tour Walmart Open presented by Kellogg’s on Beaver Lake. Scheide topped his closest rival, Mark Rose of Marion, Ark., by one pound, four ounces to earn the win and 200 points toward qualifying for the $2 million Forrest Wood Cup presented by Castrol and BP, which will be held July 30-Aug. 2 on the Three Rivers in Pittsburgh, Pa., where they could win as much as $1 million – the sport’s biggest award.

“It really feels good today to have a little redemption,” said Scheide, who won his first event with FLW Outdoors in more than five years. “Yesterday I missed some opportunities, but actually today I only had five bites. I caught the big one about 11 o’clock, but didn’t get my limit until after one.

“I had some options to go out and catch spots. But there was only one way to come back and try to make a run at this thing and that was to fish for largemouths.

Scheide said the fish were relocating each day. “One day they would be in real shallow water, the next they would be under trees. Today I actually got my first two bites in about eight to 10 foot of water. I just started running through new water and caught a majority of my fish on banks I had not even fished.”

“It was slow out there today,” said Scheide, who fished from Prairie Creek down to Coppermine. “I got my first bite around nine and another about 10. I was throwing a chigger craw and a big profile bait, alternating between them. That just shows my confidence in flipping baits right there.”

Scheide opened the tournament Thursday in 13th place with five bass weighing 11-7. He moved to seventh place Friday on the strength of a five-bass catch weighing 10 pounds, 9 ounces to advance into the final round of 10 pros with a two-day total of 10 bass weighing 22 pounds even. On Saturday, weights were cleared, and Scheide caught five bass weighing 8-13 to advance to the final day of competition in fourth place. Scheide added another five bass weighing 12-4 to his final-round total Sunday.

Rose caught a final-round total of 10 bass weighing 19-13 to claim second place and $55,000.

“I started off catching the same fish today as I had been, they were just smaller,” said Rose, who would catch his limit early and then move on to new water searching for bigger fish. “I stayed there too long. I caught about 15 keepers, but I was still trying to get to seven or eight pounds.

“I was running out of time to go flip and when it got down to it, I only had about an hour and forty-five minutes to go fishing and I culled three times. Had I done that three hours earlier, who knows?”

Rose was using a topwater bait early in the week, but on the final day said he had to slow down using a shaky head. “I weighed in every fish today on that except one right at the end. I flipped in a trash pocket where I had to put it in four-wheel drive and go get it.”

Rose, who said it was hard to feel bittersweet about finishing second, said “I wish I could finish second in every one of these. I have been at this 11 years and it would feel great to win one. I have finished everywhere from second to 200th and every place in between in those 11 years and I haven’t won one. How can you be upset with second place?”

Rounding out the top 10 pros were Team Kellogg’s pro Clark Wendlandt of Leander, Texas (nine bass, 19-12, $45,000); Jason Christie of Park Hill, Okla. (eight bass, 18-11, $35,000); Keith Combs of Del Rio, Texas (10 bass, 16-14, $30,000); Team Chevy pro Jay Yelas of Corvallis, Ore. (eight bass, 16-4, $28,000); Team Pringles pro Gabe Bolivar of Ramona, Calif. (eight bass, 16-1, $26,000); Team Berkley pro Glenn Browne of Ocala, Fla. (nine bass, 13-10, $24,000); Rob Kilby of Hot Springs, Ark. (10 bass, 13-6, $22,000); and Team National Guard pro and current Land O’Lakes Angler of the Year Brent Ehrler of Redlands, Calif. (eight bass, 12-3, $20,000).

Overall there were 43 bass weighing 84 pounds, 14 ounces caught in the Pro Division Sunday. The catch included six five-bass limits.

Brent Bridgeman of Elkmont, Ala., won the Co-angler Division and $40,000 Saturday with a five-bass limit weighing 7 pounds, 5 ounces followed by Zac Cassill of Fairfax, Iowa, in second place with five bass weighing 7-3 worth $15,000.

Bridgeman opened the tournament in second place Thursday with five bass weighing 9-14 while fishing with Bobby McMullin of Pevely, Mo. On Friday he slipped to third place with a five-bass catch weighing 6-0 while fishing with Team Febreze pro Craig Powers of Rockwood, Tenn. He wrapped up his win while fishing with Team Berkley pro Glenn Browne of Ocala, Fla.

“I didn’t even practice for this event,” said Bridgeman, who is fishing his rookie season of the FLW Tour. “I showed up barely in time for the meeting.

“My first cast on Beaver lake I caught my first keeper fish,” Bridgeman added. “First cast, first fish, first time on the lake. That’s a lot of coincidences.”

A custom airbrush artist for 21 years, Bridgeman decided to relocate from the west coast to fish the FLW Tour in 2009. Bridgeman grew up fishing tournaments with his father and won his first at age seven.

Bridgeman got the idea to fish the FLW Tour after researching Fantasy Fishing online. He had competed in a tournament at one point against angler Gary Yamamoto and had success and decided he could fish at the sport’s top level. Once he was verified to fish the Tour, Bridgeman packed his bags and moved to Alabama. That turned out to be a profitable move for Bridgeman.

“I figured I was in the top six or five,” Bridgeman said. “I thought it would take nine or 10 pounds to win it. I knew I had seven to eight pounds, and I’m glad it held up. I used a balance beam, and I bet that balance beam saved me.”

Bridgeman said he caught all of his fish on a green pumpkin with green and purple flake 6-inch Gary Yamamoto Swimming Senko rigged on a shaky head jig head.

“The fish would catch it on the fall,” Bridgeman said. “If they didn’t catch it on the fall, I’d just reel it in.”

Rounding out the top 10 co-anglers are Todd Lee of Jasper, Ala. (three bass, 6-3, $7,500); T.R. Fuller of Auburn, Ala. (four bass, 4-13, $5,000); Moo Bae of West Friendship, Md. (two bass, 2-10, $4,000); Eddie Laster of Morton, Miss. (one bass, 2-2, $3,500); Dirk Davenport of Delaware, Ohio (one bass, 2-1, $3,000); Shane Lehew of Charlotte, N.C. (two bass, 2-0, $2,500); Kevin Hawk of Ramona, Calif. (one bass, 1-15, $2,000) and David Hudson of Jasper, Ala. (one bass, 1-4, $1,750).

The total purse for the Walmart Open event on Beaver Lake was more than $1.1 million, including $10,000 through 50th place in the Pro Division.

Coverage of the Beaver Lake tournament, hosted by the Rogers Convention & Visitors Bureau and the Bentonville Convention & Visitors Bureau, will be broadcast in high-definition (HD) on VERSUS, the network which brings anglers the best fishing programming on television featuring the most-trusted authorities on the water. The Emmy-nominated “FLW Outdoors,” will air June 14 from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. ET. “FLW Outdoors,” hosted by Jason Harper, is broadcast to approximately 500 million households worldwide, including internationally through agreements with WFN (World Fishing Network) and Matchroom Sport to such countries as Canada, Germany, China, South Africa, Australia, Malaysia, Russia, Hungary and the United Kingdom, making it the most widely distributed weekly outdoor-sports television show in the world.

The FLW Tour will award more than $8 million cash to the world’s top bass anglers in 2009. Regular season competition includes three qualifiers and three opens. Each event takes anglers a step closer to the $2 million Forrest Wood Cup presented by Castrol, which will be held July 30-Aug. 2 on the Three Rivers in Pittsburgh, Pa. The prestigious championship and outdoor show hosted by Visit Pittsburgh will feature 77 pros, 77 co-anglers and bass fishing’s largest cash award – a potential $1 million first-place prize for the winning pro.

FLW Outdoors, named after Forrest L. Wood, the legendary founder of Ranger Boats, is the largest fishing tournament organization in the world. FLW Outdoors also is taking fishing mainstream with FLW Fantasy Fishing, offering the largest awards possible in the history of fantasy sports, $10 million in cash and prizes. Sign up for Player’s Advantage for only $10 to get your edge and win.

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