Hodges, Jarvis win Kinard Marine tournament
May 4, 2001
The veteran team of Mel Hodges and Bill Jarvis caught a 5 fish limit of bass weighing 17.50 pounds last Saturday on Okatibbee Lake to take first prize and $1,500.00 in the Kinard Marine tournament sponsored by Skeeter and Yamaha. These 2 anglers have fished together for quite some time and have had more than their share of good days on the water, but none perhaps as good as this day. In fact, they almost doubled the weight of the 2nd place boat.
Although they didn't get to fish their first spot before another boat did, they more than made up for it once they got on it. Amazingly, their first keeper of the day turned out to be the lunker of the tournament, a 7.39 pound sow bass caught by Jarvis. He caught the big bruiser on a black buzz bait. Shortly after that bass was landed, they caught another bass over 5 pounds. As it turned out, those 2 bass alone would have won the tourney for them. The lunker award was just icing on the cake for this team and it also put another $470.00 in their pockets.
Though they caught fish practically all day, they caught the third biggest fish on a lizard around noon. They finally filled out their limit at about 10 minutes until weigh-in time. Now that's some perseverance! Most of their fish came in water less than 3 feet deep around grass or brush. In addition to the buzz baits, they also caught bass on spinner baits and lizards.
Second place in the event went to Chad Rainer and Mike Chaney with a string that weighed 9.14 pounds. Coming in a close 3rd was the team of Chester Roberts and Jackie Penny with a weight of 8.12 pounds. Fourth place went to the team of Hank Perkins and Jimmy Hayes with a weight of 7.92 pounds. Although there was a 5 bass limit for the tournament, there were only 6 or 7 limits caught. Many anglers did report catching a lot of smaller bass that didn't meet the minimum length, however.
Overall the tournament was a big success according to tournament director Travis Stewart. "I want to say a special word of thanks to all of the participating sponsors," commented Stewart. "The Pat Harrison folks also did a fine job in helping us get the tournament site ready, as well as making the facilities available for us," he noted.
In addition to paying 12 places and a lunker prize, 26 other draw prizes were awarded to tournament competitors. Many of the draw prizes were sponsored by local businesses from around town. A drawing was held for all entrants to determine the winner of a grand prize. The grand prizewinner of the day was Ronnie Fairchild. Fairchild won a Skeeter aluminum boat and trailer.