The most heard comment at the PAYCHECK Premier tournament out of Anchor Marina on Saturday, April 18th was, “This can’t be a PAYCHECK tournament…the weather is too perfect!” There was never a truer statement as the first warm, make that HOT, day of 2015 awaited the 38 teams participating in this tournament.
After a moment of silence to honor our PAYCHECK brother Willie Barrett, who recently passed, boats began trickling out of the no Wake zone at 6:20AM. They were scheduled to return at 3:00PM and 3:15PM depending on which flight they were in.
One would think that on a day as beautiful as this that each team would return with a hefty limit, but the bass must have been confused as only ten 5-fish limits were presented to the scales.
With a unique 1-in-4 payback a total of 9 teams would be paid on this day. With the standard 1-in-5 payback most other circuits utilize just 7 teams would be paid. Another great reason to fish PAYCHECK Tournament Series!
Three of the nine teams that received checks consisted of father/son combinations. Fran Pratt and Matt Pratt finished 9th with 14.28 pounds earning them $210. John Valdez and john Valdez finished in 8th place with 15.53 pounds and received $220.
Finishing in 7th place were Steve Myers and Chris Lang who pocketed $270 thanks to their 15.95 pounds.
Sam Rineer and Kevin Simpson weighed 16.04 to finish 6th and collect $310. Their bag included a nice 6.16 pound beauty!
Ken Molz and Dan Brockmyer, the best dressed team in the field, finished in 5th place with a nice limit that weighed 16.48 pounds. They were awarded $400.
JT Lang and Andrew Wiley have been one of the most consistent teams in PAYCHECK the past 2 years and they had a 4th place finish today to prove it. They stacked 16.70 pounds on the scale, good enough for $460.
Steve Bowman and Dave Kilby, fishing from their Charger 396 bass boat finished 3rd today with 5 bass that totaled 17.12 pounds. They caught their fish from a community hole using a variety of Strike King lures. They received plaques and $680.
John Carpenter and son John experienced some engine problems which they overcame to finish in 2nd place with 19.76 pounds. Their solid limit slid them into the runner-up spot and gave them plaques and prize money totaling $1120…$950 for the win and $170 for 2nd place Option Pot money.
Claiming victory today were Greg DiPalma and Bill McDermott. Every place they stopped provided them with a 5 pounder or one close to it. Their 5 heaviest bass weighed 24.60 pounds giving them the victory. Including the Option Pot they received $1940 in total prize money.
Dave McCulloch fished solo today and didn’t have to share his lunker cash with anyone. His 6.42 pound largemouth was the Big Bass of the tournament. He received a plaque, $380 in cash, and a $200 gift card from Rhino Linings of Delaware.
The next PAYCHECK Premier tournament is on May 30 out of Dundee Creek on the Gunpowder River.