North American Fishing Guides

Dobransky Wins BFL Super Tournament on Lake Erie

SANDUSKY, Ohio (Sept. 16, 2003) – Butch Dobransky of Canton caught 10 bass weighing 41 pounds, 6 ounces to win $6,310 at the Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League Buckeye Division Super Tournament, held this weekend on Lake Erie near Sandusky. Dobransky bested 105 Boater Division competitors and earned 300 points at the tournament, which was the fifth and final Buckeye Division event of the regular season.

Dobransky caught five bass Saturday weighing 20 pounds, 7 ounces to finish fourth on day one and followed that up Sunday with another five bass weighing 20 pounds, 15 ounces to earn the win. As the highest-finishing participant in the Ranger Cup incentive program, Dobransky also claimed a $1,000 bonus from Ranger Boats, $1,000 from Garmin for using a fixed-mount Garmin Fishfinder or combination GPS/sounder and he earned another $1,000 from Bombardier for using an Evinrude Direct Injection outboard.

Rounding out the top five boaters are Cecil Cole of Durand, Mich. (10 bass, 39 pounds, 12 ounces); Steve Clapper of Lima (10 bass, 39 pounds, 2 ounces); Rob Webber of Elyria (10 bass, 37 pounds, 8 ounces); and Bryan Coates of Amherst (10 bass, 36 pounds, 14 ounces).

David Hayward of Sylvania claimed $1,050 as the Boater Division big-bass award winner with a 5-pound, 14-ounce bass.

Matthew Phillips of Farmersville led 105 Co-angler Division competitors on day two to claim $3,093 as the Super Tournament co-angler winner. He caught four bass Saturday weighing 15 pounds, 10 ounces to finish fifth and followed that up Sunday with another five bass weighing 20 pounds, 5 ounces to earn the win.

Rounding out the top five co-anglers are Roy Lester of Hamilton (10 bass, 34 pounds, 10 ounces); Troy Spence of Pedro (eight bass, 31 pounds, 9 ounces); Steven Todd of Streetsboro (10 bass, 31 pounds, 6 ounces); and Dick Parker of Amherst (10 bass, 26 pounds, 5 ounces).

Terry Park of Cleveland took co-angler big-bass honors and $505 with a 5-pound, 3-ounce bass.

Dobransky is the Buckeye Division’s Yamaha “Be the Best” points leader, winning $1,000 for the 1,066 points he earned during five regular-season tournaments. Rob Sierschula of Huber Heights is the Yamaha “Be the Best” points leader in the Co-angler Division. He earned $500 for his division-leading 1,019 points.

The top 30 boaters and top 30 co-anglers in the Buckeye Division will advance to regional competition Oct. 7-11 on Lake Chautauqua near Jamestown, N.Y., where they will go up against top competitors from the Michigan, Northeast and Shenandoah divisions for a shot at qualifying for the BFL All-American, one of the most lucrative postseason tournaments in competitive angling.

The BFL comprises 24 divisions nationwide, each featuring five regular-season events that lead to one of six regionals. Four of the regular-season tournaments are one-day events, while the final event, a Super Tournament, is a two-day tournament that will award as much as $70,950 to participating anglers. Anglers who enter all five regular-season events in a division but do not advance to a regional may enter the Chevy Trucks Wild Card for a shot at qualifying for the All-American. The All-American field comprises 84 competitors – six boaters and six co-anglers from six regionals plus six boaters and six co-anglers from the Wild Card.

As the nation’s leading provider of affordable, close-to-home weekend tournaments, the BFL is widely credited with opening competitive bass fishing to the masses. It also serves as a steppingstone for anglers who wish to advance to the EverStart Series and ultimately the Wal-Mart FLW Tour — bass fishing’s most lucrative tournament series. Each year the top 30 boaters and co-anglers from each BFL division are eligible to advance to the EverStart Series, and the All-American champions are eligible for Wal-Mart FLW Tour competition. The top 15 pros and co-anglers from the Central, Eastern and Northern divisions of the EverStart Series (top 10 from the Western Division) are eligible to advance to the Wal-Mart FLW Tour. Former BFL anglers who have become fishing superstars on the Wal-Mart FLW Tour include Kellogg’s pro Clark Wendlandt, Chevy pro Tommy Biffle and four-time FLW Tour champion David Fritts.

Wal-Mart and many of America’s most respected companies support FLW Outdoors and its six tournament trails. Wal-Mart has been the title sponsor of FLW Outdoors since 1997. For a complete list of FLW Outdoors sponsors and for more information about the premier products and services they offer, please visit

FLW Outdoors and the Wal-Mart FLW Tour are named after the legendary founder of Ranger Boats, Forrest L. Wood.

FLW Outdoors

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