While 12 pros busted 20 pounds on the second day of competition, pro Kyle Cortiana of Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, brought a limit weighing 22 pounds, 2 ounces to the scales Saturday to vault to the lead. Cortiana’s two-day total of 10 bass weighing 42-10 gives him a 15-ounce advantage over Phoenix pro Kyle Hall of Granbury, Texas, who led after Day 1 of the event. Hall brought a limit weighing 19-14 to the scales Saturday for a two-day total of 41-11, good for second place.
Pro Andy Newcomb of Camdenton, Missouri, finished the day in third place with 10 bass weighing 41-11, while Favorite Fishing pro Matt Becker of Finleyville, Pennsylvania, moved into fourth with a two-day total of 40-10. Milford, Delaware’s Kurt Mitchell finished the day with a two-day total of 10 bass weighing 40-1 to round out the top five.
Despite coming in an hour early due to livewell issues, Cortiana managed to catch enough to sit atop the leaderboard after two days of competition.
“Today was awesome and the Lord blessed me,” Cortiana said. “He puts it on my heart to throw a bait or to move from one place to another, so it’s truly Him that did it and not me.
“My dad got to fly up here and experience all of this with me for the first time, so that’s been amazing,” he continued. “He’s got such a big heart, so it’s been awesome to see his response to all of this and his excitement for me. It’s made me even more excited during this event because I know he’s able to watch and experience it all first-hand.”
Saturday marked the first time in his career that Cortiana has led a Pro Circuit event, making the experience all the more exhilarating for the Oklahoma pro, who has yet to make a championship round this year.
“I started on a spot where I caught them on Day 1, dragging a Carolina rig with a Yum Christie Craw on it and caught 18 pounds pretty quick before running new water,” Cortiana said. “I hit a few of the same areas because I knew there were multiple fish there, but for the most part my game plan is to get the weight I need to maintain my position and keep running new water to prep for the weights zeroing on Monday in the Championship Round.”
With several career-altering opportunities up for grabs this week – including the Bally Bet Angler of the Year (AOY) title, Polaris Rookie of the Year (ROY) title, qualification for the TITLE Presented by Mercury, the Pro Circuit Championship, and the opportunity to advance to the MLF Bass Pro Tour – the pursuit for valuable points is on and the event is shaping up to be one of the tightest races in the history of the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit.
After ending Day 2 in 24th place, rookie pro Nick Hatfield of Greeneville, Tennessee solidified his position Saturday to win the Polaris ROY and take home the coveted hardware.
“This has been a great year,” Hatfield said. “I was already thrilled to have qualified for the Pro Circuit through the Toyota Series last year, but when the schedule came out, I got even more excited because it really fit my strengths. I think that has played a big part in being able to achieve this goal and I feel super blessed.”
Hatfield began fishing with MLF in 2013, coming up through the Abu Garcia College Fishing program, before making his way through the Phoenix Bass Fishing League and the Toyota Series to advance to the Pro Circuit.
“It’s all a process and I’ve dreamed of doing this since before I was in high school, so to be out here doing it and to see some success in my very first year as a pro, is pretty cool,” Hatfield said.
Although he is happy with the win, Hatfield said he wasn’t satisfied to stay where he is now.
“This isn’t it for me,” he continued. “I want to keep learning and keep moving up – I want to be one of the top dogs around here, so I’ve still got some work to do to make that happen.”
The top 50 pros that made the cut after Day 2 and will fish Sunday on Lake Champlain are:
2nd: Kyle Hall of Granbury, Texas, 10 bass, 41-11
3rd: Andy Newcomb of Camdenton, Mo., 10 bass, 41-11
4th: Matt Becker of Finleyville, Pa., 10 bass, 40-10
5th: Kurt Mitchell of Milford, Del., 10 bass, 40-1
6th: Dakota Ebare of Brookeland, Texas, 10 bass, 40-0
7th: Skeet Reese of Auburn, Calif., 10 bass, 39-7
8th: Michael Neal of Dayton, Tenn., 10 bass, 39-3
9th: Casey Scanlon of Eldon, Mo., 10 bass, 39-1
10th: Tyler Stewart of Dubach, La., 10 bass, 38-7
11th: Lane Olson of Forest Grove, Ore., 10 bass, 38-2
12th: Ron Nelson of Berrien Springs, Mich., 10 bass, 38-1
13th: Spencer Shuffield of Hot Springs, Ark., 10 bass, 38-1
14th: Alex Davis of Albertville, Ala., 10 bass, 38-1
15th: Justin Lucas of Guntersville, Ala., 10 bass, 37-12
16th: Joey Cifuentes of Clinton, Ark., 10 bass, 37-11
17th: Cole Floyd of Leesburg, Ohio, 10 bass, 37-8
18th: Cody Pike of Powhatan, Va., 10 bass, 37-8
19th: Jim Moynagh of Shakopee, Minn., 10 bass, 37-5
20th: Mark Rose of Wynne, Ark., 10 bass, 37-4
21st: Jon Canada of Helena, Ala., 10 bass, 37-4
22nd: Shonn Goodwin of Moore, Okla., 10 bass, 36-15
23rd: Martin Villa of Charlottesville, Va., 10 bass, 36-15
24th: Nick Hatfield of Greeneville, Tenn., 10 bass, 36-13
25th: Evan Barnes of Dardanelle, Ark., 10 bass, 36-12
26th: Steve Lopez of Oconomowoc, Wis., 10 bass, 36-9
27th: Scott Dobson of Clarkston, Mich., 10 bass, 36-5
28th: Billy Hines of Vacaville, Calif., 10 bass, 36-5
29th: Jared McMillan of Clewiston, Fla., 10 bass, 36-4
30th: Matt Greenblatt of Port St. Lucie, Fla., 10 bass, 36-4
31st: Chase Serafin of White Lake, Mich., 10 bass, 36-3
32nd: Nick Lebrun of Bossier City, La., 10 bass, 35-13
33rd: David Walker of Sevierville, Tenn., 10 bass, 35-12
34th: Corey Neece of Bristol, Tenn., 10 bass, 35-11
35th: John Voyles of Petersburg, Ind., 10 bass, 35-9
36th: Chris Lane of Guntersville, Ala., 10 bass, 35-7
37th: Troy Stokes of Trenton, Mich., 10 bass, 35-6
38th: Justin Cooper of Zwolle, La., 10 bass, 35-1
39th: Keith Carson of DeBary, Fla., 10 bass, 35-0
40th: John Hunter of Shelbyville, Ky., 10 bass, 35-0
41st: Terry Bolton of Benton, Ky., 10 bass, 35-0
42nd: Randy Howell of Guntersville, Ala., 10 bass, 34-15
43rd: Braxton Setzer of Wetumpka, Ala., 10 bass, 34-12
44th: Miles Burghoff of Dayton, Tenn., 10 bass, 34-11
45th: Jason Reyes of Huffman, Texas, 10 bass, 34-9
46th: Larry Nixon of Quitman, Ark., 10 bass, 34-7
47th: Grae Buck of Green Lane, Pa., 10 bass, 34-7
48th: Tim Frederick of Leesburg, Fla., 10 bass, 34-4
49th: Jacob Wall of New Hope, Ala., 10 bass, 34-4
50th: Kyle Gelles of Pingree, Idaho, 10 bass, 34-4
Buck brought a bass weighing 5 pounds, 10 ounces to the scale on Saturday to win the day’s $1,000 Berkley Big Bass award.
Overall, there were 761 bass weighing 2,421 pounds, 5 ounces caught by 153 pros Saturday. The catch included 152 five-bass limits.
The event, hosted by the City of Plattsburgh and the Adirondack Coast Visitors Bureau, marks the sixth and final regular-season event of the year for the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Presented by Fuel Me.
In Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit competition, the full field of anglers competed in the two-day opening round on Friday and Saturday. Now, the top 50 pros based on their two-day cumulative weight advance to Sunday. Only the top 10 pros, based on cumulative weight from the first three days, will continue competition on Championship Monday, where weights will be zeroed, and anglers will compete in a one-day shootout for the grand prize of up to $135,000, including the lucrative $35,000 Phoenix MLF Bonus for qualified anglers.
Throughout the season, anglers are also vying for valuable points in hopes of qualifying for the 2022 Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit TITLE Presented by Mercury, the Pro Circuit Championship, where they will compete for up to $235,000. The 2022 TITLE will be on the St. Lawrence River in Massena, New York on Aug. 16-21, and is hosted by the Town of Massena.
Anglers will take off at 6:30 a.m. ET each day from the Plattsburgh Waterfront, located at 5 Dock Street in Plattsburgh. Weigh-ins will also be held at the park daily at 2:30 p.m. Fans are welcome to attend the event or follow the live on-the-water action all four days of competition online on MLF NOW! beginning at 7 a.m. ET at MajorLeagueFishing.com.
The MLF Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Covercraft Stop 6 at Lake Champlain Presented by Wiley X will feature live on-the-water coverage and a two-hour action-packed television show that will premiere September 3 on the CBS Sports Network.
Proud sponsors of the 2022 MLF Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Presented by Fuel Me include: 4WP, 13 Fishing, Abu Garcia, A.R.E. Truck Caps, B&W Trailer Hitches, Berkley, Black Rifle Coffee, E3, Epic Baits, Favorite Fishing, Fuel Me, Gary Yamamoto Baits, General Tire, Lew’s, Lowrance, Lucas Oil, Mercury, Mossy Oak, Onyx, Phoenix, Polaris, Power-Pole, Strike King, Tackle Warehouse, T-H Marine, Toyota, Wiley X and YETI.
For complete details and updated information visit MajorLeagueFishing.com. For regular updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit on the MLF5 social media outlets at Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.
About Major League Fishing
Major League Fishing (MLF) is the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, producing more than 250 events annually at some of the most prestigious fisheries in the world, while broadcasting to America’s living rooms on CBS, the Discovery Channel, the Outdoor Channel, CBS Sports Network, the World Fishing Network and on-demand on MyOutdoorTV (MOTV). Headquartered in Tulsa, Oklahoma, with offices in Benton, Kentucky, the MLF roster of bass anglers includes the world’s top pros and more than 30,000 competitors in all 50 states and 13 countries. In 2019, MLF expanded its portfolio of catch, weigh, and immediately release events to include the sport’s strongest five-biggest-fish format tournament circuits. Since its founding in 2011, MLF has advanced the sport of competitive fishing through its premier television broadcasts and livestreams and is dedicated to improving the quality of life for bass through research, education, fisheries enhancement and fish care.
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