St. Paris’ Nesbitt Wins Phoenix Bass Fishing League Event on Indian Lake
May 24th, 2022 by Keith Worrall
Modified May 24th, 2022 at 12:47 PM
Boater Michael Nesbitt of St. Paris, Ohio and Strike-King co-angler Jeffrey Smith.
Smith Claims Strike King Co-Angler Division Victory
LAKEVIEW, Ohio (May 23, 2022) – Boater Michael Nesbitt of St. Paris, Ohio, caught five bass Saturday weighing 10 pounds, 3 ounces, to win the MLF Phoenix Bass Fishing League Presented by T-H Marine on Indian Lake . The tournament was the season-opener for the Bass Fishing League Buckeye Division. Nesbitt earned $5,154 for his victory.
“We went back to the Game Preserve where there was one spot I wanted to fish, and there were already boats there,” Nesbitt said. “I’m a big frog fisherman, but there were people already frogging there, so I just went to finesse fishing. We had boats literally right beside us all day. I threw a wacky rig and a swimbait, then caught one right at the end of the day on a frog that was a good cull up.”
Nesbitt said he made long casts to fish guarding fry around grass and lily pads and said the key to his success was bait placement more than anything else. He said he caught nine fish, all keepers, during the tournament.
“It was a pretty simple day, really,” Nesbitt said. “We just battled it out in one little area.
“All of my fish came on a spinning rod in the heavy vegetation,” Nesbitt added. “I was really trying to focus on winning this event and pre-fished four or five times for it. I’ve spent a lot of time on that lake.”
The top 10 boaters finished the tournament in:
1st: Michael Nesbitt, St. Paris, Ohio, five bass, 10-3, $5,154
2nd: Josh Smith, Hamilton, Ohio, five bass, 9-12, $3,477 (includes $500 Phoenix MLF Contingency Bonus)
3rd: Quentin Smith, Minford, Ohio, five bass, 9-7, $1,719
4th: Cody Seeger, Lewistown, Ohio, five bass, 9-4, $1,117
4th: Dave Fricke, Hamilton, Ohio, five bass, 9-4, $1,117
6th: Jeffrey Cummins, Marion, Ohio, five bass, 9-2, $945
7th: Benjamin Quisno, Waynesville, Ohio, five bass, 8-12, $859
8th: Dan Fry, Marysville, Ohio, five bass, 8-11, $973
9th: Tanner Ward, Woodsfield, Ohio, five bass, 8-9, $687
10th: Brandon Cline, Wheelersburg, Ohio, five bass, 8-5, $601
Complete results can be found at MajorLeagueFishing.com.
Jarrett Martin of Mansfield, Ohio, caught a largemouth weighing 4 pounds, 6 ounces – the heaviest of the event in the Boater Division – to earn the day’s Berkley Big Bass Boater award of $795.
Jeffrey Smith won the Strike King Co-angler Division and $2,512 Saturday after catching five bass weighing 10 pounds, 1 ounce.
The top 10 Strike King co-anglers were:
1st: Jeffrey Smith, five bass, 10-1, $2,512
2nd: Jacob Alltop, Lewistown, Ohio, five bass, 8-13, $1,256
3rd: Braden Fairbanks, five bass, 6-15, $712
3rd: Brian Reynolds, five bass, 6-15, $712
5th: Justin Smith, Middletown, Ohio, four bass, 6-10, $602
6th: Brad Lyon, Dublin, Ohio, five bass, 6-7, $461
7th: Aaron Lewis, five bass, 5-13, $419
8th: Christopher Chapman, four bass, 5-11, $377
9th: Howard Smith, Hamilton, Ohio, three bass, 5-7, $535
10th: Brent Wilkens, Hamilton, Ohio, four bass, 5-4, $293
Larry Dew of Allison Park, Pennsylvania, caught the largest bass in the Co-angler Division, a fish weighing in at 3 pounds, 2 ounces. The catch earned him the day’s Berkley Big Bass Co-angler award of $387.
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.
Major League Fishing – WE ARE Bass Fishing™