The 2009 Northern Division Champions from Michigan made a statement this week in Iowa that they will be the team to beat. They led the event wire to wire and finished up back to back division champions. Can they make it three in a row?
Next year’s event will tell that story, but the Michigan team fished a nearly flawless event out of Fort Madison, Iowa on the Mississippi river this year and finished with 171 pounds even, besides the lion’s share of the nearly $25,000.00 in prize money, they also took home the Team Standings Ranger Cup money.
Wisconsin did make a valiant effort on the final day to overtake the Michigan anglers and cut their lead in half, but it was too little, too late and Wisconsin finished second with 166-09. The host state of Illinois who had been struggling all week made their move on the final day as well and moved up into third place finishing 6-05 ahead of the fourth place Ohio squad. Illinois finished with 135-13 to Ohio’s 129-08. Minnesota wound up in fifth with a team weight of 127-11 and Indiana rounded out the field at 85-08. The 2010 TBF Northern Division Championship will be hosted by Indiana on Lake Patoka.
While there was not a single angler in the 72 angler championship field that weighed in a five fish limit all three days in a row. It was Michigan angler Jason Knapp that proved that a steady hand will prevail as he fished his way through a crowd to the Division Champions title, the Castrol Maximum Performer Bonus award and a $600.00 Ranger Cup bonus.
Knapp only weighed in 3 fish the first day but they weighed 7-03. On both of the last two days he weighed in a limit and was the only angler in the field that weighed in two limits over the course of the event and finished as the Division Champion with 28 pounds and 9 ounces. Knapp was fishing small creek and had lots of company in and out of it, but no other boat managed to catch the fish in there like Knapp and his partners did.
Tony Waugh went on to catch solid sacks on days 2 and 3 to finish his work and place him into second place overall and leading his Ohio team with his weight of 26-05. Tommy Robinson who was the tournament leader going into the final day only managed one fish on Friday as the river continued to drop and hurt his area. He finished up in third overall at 22-14, only two ounces back in fourth was Illinois angler Lee Lewis with 22-12 and 6 ounces behind him in fifth was Wisconsin’s James Tomsovic.
The top two anglers from each state team progress to the 2010 TBF Federation National Championship, Presented by The National Guard. That event will be held in Knoxville, TN the week of April 19th. The top angler from each state progress as the Boater and the second place angler on each team progresses as the co-angler. Here are the 12 who will advance from the Northern division.
Michigan – Jason Knapp- Boater, Tommy Robinson – Co-Angler:
Wisconsin – James Tomsovic- Boater, Jim Dick – Co-Angler;
Illinois – Lee Lewis – Boater, Darin Reed – Co-Angler;
Ohio – Tony Waugh – Boater, Kevin Wells – Co-Angler;
Minnesota – Tim Domaille – Boater, Nate Carlson – Co-Angler;
Indiana – Aaron Ault – Boater, Steve Quiggins – Co-Angler
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