Central Divisional Championship Begins presented by Evinrude


After the first day, the one thing that is still certain, in this event, is that everyone is still in the hunt to make the championship. The keeper bites were few and far between as only 102 keeper fish were weighed in by the 94 anglers.Joseph Webster There was only one limit weighed in today and it belonged to Joseph Webster of Fulton, Mississippi with 12.12 pounds.

  Eight other anglers have a weight of just over 6 pounds going into the second day of competition on the Tenn-Tom Waterway in Aberdeen, Mississippi. Most every angler in each of the 8 competing states, still has an opportunity to be one of the top two anglers from their state, come Friday.




Ben Milliken got off to a good start with two fish that weighed 7.09 pounds. He also brought the biggest bass of the day to the scales with a nice 5.05 lunker.DSC01305

The top two anglers from each of the eight states are as follows:

Kansas: David Heffel 6.08 & Jayce Newell 6.01

Mississippi: Joseph Webster 12.12 & Jamie Long 6.09

Oklahoma: Johnny Babb 6.15 & Brandon Moss 4.14

Nebraska: Ben Milliken 7.09 & Terry Hussey 5.11

Arkansas: Mike Palmer 6.08 & Josh Ray 6.08

Missouri: Cole Findley 6.01 & Tim Biondo 4.15

Louisiana: Mark Brasher 4.07 & Seth Leblanc 4.06

Texas: John Brothers 4.13 & Rick Rickman 3.09

The daily weigh-ins begin at 3:00 pm each of the next two days at Aberdeen Marina.

View Day 1 Pictures 

View Day 1 Results

A “Rare” TBF Northwest Division Championship Presented by Berkley

The 2015 Northwest Division Championship presented by Berkley is over, but it was a “rare” occurrence and will be talked about for a long time to come. Washington big stick Aaron Eckterncamp catching a “Rare” unheard of bag of fish from the tournament waters, locking up the individual division champions title and Montana winning its first Division Championship in more than a decade for sure and possibly its first in history (no one is quite sure).

In a rare occurrence, all 54 anglers weighed in at least one fish every day of the three day event. There was not one single zero in three days. That is pretty impressive on any body of water. The Noxon Reservoir in upper northwest Montana made a name for itself this weekend with some impressive limits of fish. The average size limits are normally around 12 to 14 pounds. A good sack of fish would be anything above 16 pounds and anything above that would be rare.

Day one saw 47 of the 54 anglers bring in a limit of bass. The big bag on day one belonged to Brian Sanders of Sutherlin, OR with a 16.02 pound sack of bass. The biggest bass of the day belonged to Randy Gust of Osburn, ID with a 5.07 smallmouth. On the second day of competition, 48 out of 54 anglers brought a limit of fish to the scales. Aaron Echternkamp of Moses Lake, WA shocked the crowd with a bag that weighed one ounce shy of 21 pounds, at 20.15. Daily big bass honors on Day 2 went to Dillon Thomas, of Green River, WY with a 6.07 pound bucketmouth. And to finish the event, Day three saw three different anglers bring in bags of 17 plus pounds, while 45 of the 54 anglers recorded limits on Friday. The biggest bag belonged to Bryson Mort, from Post Falls, ID with big bass day 3 NW Noxon17.05 pounds. The final big bass of the tournament went to Casey Clark from Lambert, MT with a nice 5.10 largemouth.









In the individual category, the overall winner of the event was Aaron Echternkamp with an impressive three day weight of 50.11 pounds. He was the only angler to reach the 50 pound club. For his efforts he received the overall Champions plaque and earned a spot at the TBF Federation National Championship next spring, representing Washington.

Aaron Winner NW Div Noxon

The other qualifier from Washington was Peter Kline. The other 8 qualifiers were as follows: IDAHO: Bryson Mort & Loron Torok, MONTANA: Stan Fisher & Danny Stamper, OREGON: Nicholas Fitzsimmons & Thomas Hartshorn, WYOMING: Zach Lugibihl & Lee Thomas. Congratulations to these ten qualifiers for the TBF National Championship.

NW Noxon top 10










In the competition among the states the final results looked like this:

Montana 437.14Montana Winning state

Idaho 417.05

Washington 416.03

Oregon 360.10

Wyoming 179.03

Congratulations to Montana for a well deserved win in a total team effort.

What a great week in Montana. Just wanted to say a quick thanks to all who were involved in making this event a success. Thompson Falls Chamber of Commerce, Lakeside Resort & Motel & The Trout Creek Community Improvement Association all played a part in getting this event scheduled in Montana. Hosts for this event were Lakeside Resort & Motel, John & Julie Harris and then Trout Creek Motel with Bill & Yvonne Stevenson. Both of these places are fine places to stay with clean rooms and great people to take care of you while you are there. If you ever get a chance to get to upper Northwest Montana, I highly recommend you look these folks up. Thanks for a wonderful week in Montana.

 For Day 3 Photo Gallery CLICK HERE

For Complete Standings CLICK HERE






TBF Northwest Divisional, presented by Berkley Day 2 Is In The Books

For the second consecutive day, every angler in the TBF Northwest Division championship presented by Berkley in Trout Creek, Montana weighed in at least one or more fish.  All 54 anglers have now weighed fish each of the first two days of the three day event.  Day 1 had 47 limits weighed in and Day 2 had 48 limits weighed in out of 54 anglers.   This sets up the final day to be a shootout as several anglers in each state still have a legitimate shot at making the top 2 anglers in each of their respective states.  When the weigh in concludes on Friday, the top two anglers from Washington, Montana, Idaho, Oregon & Wyoming will advance to the TBF Federation National Championship in the Spring of 2016.

As for the overall bragging rights, from this event, Aaron Echternkamp, from Moses Lake, WA NW Day 2 Leader Aaronstands atop the leader board with a two day weight of 33.11 pounds.  Aaron weighed 12.12 on Day 1 and then wowed the crowd with a monster sack of 20.15 pounds today, which was by far the heaviest bag of the two days so far.  No one is really talking about how they are catching their fish, since the weights are so close together.  Most of the locals are speculating that many of the anglers are still bed fishing in the mornings and then if they don’t have a limit by mid-day, then they are moving on to other patterns.  Just behind Aaron, in second place, is Nicholas Fitzsimmons, of Lyle, WA with 32.03 pounds.  Lurking closely in third is Peter Kline, of Tulalip, WA with 31.12 pounds.  Rounding out the top five are Bryson Mort of Post Falls, ID with 29.02 pounds and Tony Lofranco of Bothell, WA with 29.01 pounds.

The Biggest Bass of the day came from Dillon Thomas from Green River, WY.  Dillon only brought one fish to the scales, but it weighed an impressive 6.07 pounds.  Dillon will receive $270 for his big bass on Day 2.  Congratulations DIllon!

 NW Day 2 Big Bass Dillon









As for each states top two anglers, here is how they stand with one day of fishing left.


Aaaron Echternkamp 33.11

Peter Kline 31.12

Sitting in third is Tony Lofranco with 29.01



Randy Gust 28.03

Danny Stamper 28.01

Sitting in third is Stan Fisher with 27.02



Bryson Mort 29.02

Jason Hickey 26.04

Sitting in third is David Ashton with 26.00



Nicholas Fitzsimmons 32.03

Brian Sanders 27.12

Sitting in third is Thomas Hartshorn with 25.07



Zach Lugibihl 25.11

Lee Thomas 23.04

Sitting in third is Kasey Thomas with 22.01


Tomorrow is shaping up to be a good one.  Many anglers in each state still have a really good chance at moving up and acquiring one of those two coveted state spots, for the Federation National Championship.  Weigh in starts at 3:00 pm Mountain Time and results, along with all the winners photos will be posted immediately following the weigh in at Trout Creek, Montana. 

For Day 2 photo gallery CLICK HERE

TBF Northwest Division Championship, Presented By Berkley

Day 1 of the TBF Northwest Division Championship, presented by Berkley is in the record books and every single angler weighed in fish today!  It was a good day at Lakeside Resort & Motel in Trout Creek, MT.

Oregon angler Brian Sanders leads the individual overall standings with 5 fish that tipped the scales at 16 pounds and 2 ounces. d1 leader NW div


Big fish of the day was caught by Randy Gust (MT) and weighed in at 5-07. But it was the host state of Montana that grabbed the lead in the state standings, they have a 9 pound lead at 147-09, Idaho and Washington are almost tied at 3rd with 138-14 and 138-11 respectively and Oregon and Wyoming round out the five.

In the individual standings by state, Sanders leads the Oregon Team, Mike Dominick leads Montana with 15-09, Jason Hickey leads Idaho with 14-03, Peter Kline is right at the top and leads Washington with 15-09 and Zach Lugibihl is leading the Wyoming squad with 12-15


For complete Overall Standings CLICK HERE

For complete State Standings CLICK HERE

For compete State Team Standings BY State CLICK HERE


For day 1 Photo Gallery CLICK HERE

SouthWestern Divisional Championship

One thing is for certain, somebody is always going to win. Today at the Southwest Divisional California  1st Place TeamChampionship at Clear Lake, CA someone did just that. Seth Rowe of Chowchilla, CA was steady at the helm for three straight days. Weighing in 22.04 on Wednesday, he then followed it up with 25.15 on Thursday and finally today sacked another 23.02 to seal the win with 71.05 pounds.Seth Rowe  SouWest Overall Winner That gave him the cumulative three day total victory, but more importantly, it guaranteed him a spot in the upcoming 2016 TBF Federation National Championship. Making a strong push to the finish line was Inder Lopez,of Spriong Valley, CA who came up just 14 ounces short of the win. Inder started fairly strong with 21.03 but managed to catch just 4 keeper fish on day two for 16.10. But he finished strong with the largest limit of the event with 32.10 pounds to finish in second place. His consolation prize was that he was the second highest finisher in his state, so he still qualified to fish in the Federation National Championship.

When asked how they were catching their fish, just about every contestant said pretty much the same thing. They were sight fishing or bed fishing. Numerous anglers talked of how they spend 20 minutes or more trying to catch each bedding fish. As the tournament progressed, the time it took to catch each fish got longer as more and more anglers were fishing for the same bedding fish. White flukes, white jigs, tubes brush hogs and wacky worms were just a few of the preferred baits used by the winning anglers. Most anglers said their fish were in two feet of water or less. There were a couple of anglers who managed to catch fish on a buzzbait, a Pop-R, a frog or a reaction bait, but by far the event was dominated by sight fishing. Today had several 20 pound plus bags weighed in, but not the size we had see in the previous two days. However the big fish were biting today. There were a couple of sevenTrevor Lincoln   Day 3 Big Bass pounders and three over 8 weighed in today. The biggest turned out to be a 8.11 lunker by Trevor Lincoln of Santee, CA. His big bass earned him an extra $290 today.

The final piece of the puzzle, was who were the top two anglers from each state that would be moving on to the Federation National Championship next spring. Here is how they finished:


Seth Rowe 71-05

Inder Lopez 70-07



Jon Griffith 56.10

Jesse Parks 55.05



Cory Jones 52.04

Joe Johnson 51.05



Sam Heckman 55.10

Brandon White 48.11



Shane Moline 63.06

Victor Cole 48.06

This was the first of seven divisional qualifiers for the TBF this year. The next one is this coming week in the North West Division at Noxon Reservoir in Trout Creek, Montana.



South Western Divisional day 2

Seth RoweSometimes lightning does strike twice. For the second day in a row, all 58 anglers in the Southwest Divisional Championship, at Clear Lake, California caught at least one keeper fish. Even though the weather conditions were changing every day, the anglers were still figuring out how to catch them. The three days of practice brought high and gusty winds. The first day of competition brought cool temperatures and bright sunshine. Today brought overcast skies and drizzling rain for most of the day. Tomorrows forecast is for “payday” for ten lucky anglers. For the five states competing, each state will advance the highest two finishing anglers into the TBF Federation National Championship in the spring of 2016.

Inder Lopez  Big Bass Day 2Leading in the cumulative weight category after two days is now Seth Rowe, from Chowchilla, CA. Seth brought in the biggest bag in two days of fishing today, with an impressive 25.15 pounds. That vaulted him all the way to the top of the leader board with 48.03 pounds. Just behind him in second is Shane Moline from NV with 46.02. Third place honors go to Bill Brown of Utah with 40.05. Fourth place is occupied by Jon Griffith of AZ with 39.14 and the fifth spot is taken by James McIntyre of AZ with 39.10.

The biggest bass of the day was upscaled today by Inder Lopez with a giant 8-14 toad of a bass. For that lunker, Inder earned himself an extra $290 today.

The qualifying for the Federation National Championship looks like this by state, after Day 2:

Seth Rowe 48.03
Randy Pierson 37.13
Inder Lopez 37.13

Bill Brown 40.05
Don Allphin 33.13
Joe Johnson 33.04

Jon Griffith 39.14
James McIntyre 39.10
Jesse Parks 35.12

Sam Heckman 32.12
Bryan Leck 32.10
Gabe Kennedy 32.03

Shane Moline 46.02
Victor Cole 39.04
Douglas Jones 25.01

There are still numerous people in each state that can change the leader board with just one big bite on Friday. Rumor is that most anglers are primarily sight fishing. This means that a big fish can come on just about any cast if the angler can just entice that fish to bite. There are several anglers that reportedly have see 8 to 11 pound fish on the beds and have not been able to make them bite. Could that change tomorrow? If it does, it will be a game changer for a lot of folks. Weigh in starts tomorrow at 2:30 Pacific time. Good luck to all the Southwest anglers on the final day tomorrow.



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