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Carolina Bass Challenge draws 450-plus amateur bass anglers

Dale Duncan and Donnie Woody of Marion show off their winning bass. They won the Carolina Bass Challenge with a total of 19.51 pounds and took home a $14,000 check.
Dale Duncan and Donnie Woody of Marion show off their winning bass. They won the Carolina Bass Challenge with a total of 19.51 pounds and took home a $14,000 check.

Can you think of any sports event that 229 teams compete against each other all on the same day?

On March 19, 458 bass anglers roared out of Blythe Landing in Cornelius to catch bass, win money and points on their quest to be the best fishing team in the Southeast.

Just a little more than a half pound separated the top three place winners. Dale Duncan and his partner Donnie Woody, both from Marion, took first place and a check for $14,000 with their five largemouth bass weighing 19.57 pounds. First prize was $10,000 and they picked up the first $4,000 Skeeter Bass Boat bonus fishing from Adam’s Skeeter boat. The prize money comes from the entry fees and bonuses from several marinas and sponsors.

Woody and Duncan have been fishing partners since it started in 2011.

“Our best bait was the Flash Mob Junior, (an Alabama rig with multiple lures), we caught some on flukes and plastics, about half were on the beds and some off the beds in 8 to 12 feet deep” Woody said. “This is the best team bass trail in the country and has the best payouts. It is awesome for the weekend angler. Pro anglers and guides are not eligible.”

This team needs to fish one more event to qualify for the Carolina Bass Classic on Lake Norman in October. The top prize is at least $50,000. This is the biggest event of it’s kind in the region.

Five fish weighing 19.11 pounds got the second place honors for Adam Waters, Denver, and Dylan Fulk, Concord, and a check for $5,000. Craig Chambers of Charlotte and Keith Ogden of Concord won $3,500 for third place with 18.94 pounds.

It was not the best fishing day; only 188 teams weighed fish. All the fish were released alive.

Brett Collins, Ridgeway, S.C., the tournament director and weigh master travels the Carolinas for his events. “Coming to Lake Norman has always been a good experience. The number of teams that participate has doubled.”

Lou Mintzer is a freelance writer: lou_mintzer@hotmail.com.

Learn more

www.carolinabasschallenge; Visitlakenorman.org.

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