Monday, May 20, 2024

Farmersburg’s Wilkinson Gets Win No. 10 at Phoenix Bass Fishing League Event at Ohio River


Boater winner Chris Wilkinson of Farmersburg, Indiana, and Strike-King co-angler winner Brian Senter of New Castle, Indiana.
New Castle’s Senter Tops Strike King Co-Angler Division

CANNELTON, Ind. (May 13, 2024) – Boater Chris Wilkinson of Farmersburg, Indiana, caught a five-bass limit weighing 11 pounds, 10 ounces, Saturday to win the MLF Phoenix Bass Fishing League (BFL) Presented by T-H Marine on the Ohio River at Rocky Point. The tournament was the second event of the season for the BFL Hoosier Division. Wilkinson earned $4,437 for his victory.

Wilkinson is no stranger to the Ohio River. The MLF veteran has now won 10 BFL tournaments, with eight of them coming on stretches of the river. So he knew how to handle the muddy water that followed storms and heavy rains during the week.

“I was just trying to find a little bit cleaner water,” he said. “That’s kind of what I was searching for. I was able to find a couple spots. They’re basically creeks. I fished creeks the whole time and didn’t fish the main river at all.”

Wilkinson fished wood the entire day and started out flipping a Hog Snatcher Baits creature bait. He caught a few keepers that way early on.

“It seemed like when the sun came up in practice I was catching most of my fish on spinnerbaits and buzzbaits,” he said. “So when the sun got up (in the tournament), I switched to the spinnerbait and buzzbait. That’s how I caught most of the fish in the afternoon.”

The buzzbait produced two key bites. The rest came on a spinnerbait from Hook Some Bass Bait Company. Overall, Wilkinson landed about 15 keeper bass on the day to earn his win.

The top 10 boaters finished the tournament:

1st:        Chris Wilkinson, Farmersburg, Ind., five bass, 11-10, $4,437
2nd:       Ryan Deal, Evansville, Ind., five bass, 11-5, $1,958
3rd:       James Whitaker, Cincinnati, Ohio, five bass, 9-4, $1,307
4th:        Jeramiah Sifers, Sellersburg, Ind., five bass, 8-10, $914
5th:        Mark Dove, North Vernon, Ind., five bass, 7-3, $750
5th:        Kevin Meunier, Lamar, Ind., five bass, 7-3, $750
7th:        Nick Uebelhor, Jasper, Ind., five bass, 6-10, $1,120 (includes $500 Phoenix MLF Contingency Bonus)
7th:        John Melton, Corydon, Ind., five bass, 6-10, $620
9th:        Blake Knies, Jasper, Ind., five bass, 6-2, $522
10th:     William Briere, Mooresville, Ind., four bass, 5-9, $457

Complete results can be found at

Wilkinson caught a bass that weighed 3 pounds, 2 ounces, and also earned the Berkley Big Bass Boater award of $520.

Brian Senter of New Castle, Indiana, won the Strike King co-angler division and $2,071 Saturday, after bringing five bass to the scale that totaled 8 pounds, 12 ounces.

The top 10 Strike King co-anglers finished:

1st:        Brian Senter, New Castle, Ind., five bass, 8-12, $2,071
2nd:       Tony Burke, Bloomington, Ind., five bass, 6-12, $960
3rd:       Jarrod Pickel, Indianapolis, Ind., five bass, 6-4, $641
4th:        Rod Yoder, West Lafayette, Ind., three bass, 6-3, $448
5th:        Steven Atwood, Lexington, Ind., two bass, 5-13, $739
6th:        Darrell Duke, Hawesville, Ky., three bass, 5-9, $352
7th:        Bo Bivins, Evansville, Ind., five bass, 5-8, $320
8th:        Scott Roberts, Jeffersonville, Ind., four bass, 5-7, $288
9th:        Paul Eckert, Jasper, Ind., four bass, 5-4, $256
10th:     John Thomas, Quincy, Ind., four bass, 5-1, $224

Steven Atwood of Lexington, Indiana, earned the Berkley Big Bass co-angler award of $255, catching a bass that weighed in at 4 pounds, 9 ounces – the largest co-angler catch of the day.

After two events, James Whitaker of Cincinnati, Ohio, leads the Fishing Clash Hoosier Division Angler of the Year (AOY) race with 497 points, while Paul Eckert of Jasper, Indiana, leads the Fishing Clash Hoosier Division Co-Angler of the Year race with 490 points.

The next event for BFL Hoosier Division anglers will be held June 15, at Ohio River-Tanners Creek in Lawrenceburg, Indiana. To register for the event as a boater or a co-angler, visit or call (270)-252-1000.

The top 45 boaters and co-anglers in the region based on point standings, along with the five tournament winners of each qualifying event, will qualify for the Oct. 10-12 BFL Regional tournament on Mississippi River Pools 13-17 in Quad Cities, Illinois. Boaters will fish for a top award of $60,000, including a new Phoenix 819 Pro with a 200-horsepower Mercury or Suzuki outboard and $10,000, while co-anglers will compete for a top award of $50,000, including a new Phoenix 819 Pro with a 200-horsepower Mercury or Suzuki outboard.

The 2024 Phoenix BFL Presented by T-H Marine is a 24-division circuit devoted to weekend anglers, with 128 events throughout the season, five qualifying tournaments in each division. The top 45 boaters and Strike King co-anglers from each division, along with the five qualifying event winners, will advance to one of six BFL Regional tournaments where they are competing to finish in the top six, which then qualifies them for one of the longest-running championships in all of competitive bass fishing – the BFL All-American.

Proud sponsors of the 2024 MLF Phoenix Bass Fishing League Presented by T-H Marine include: 7Brew, Abu Garcia, B&W Trailer Hitches, Berkley, BUBBA, E3, Epic Baits, Fishing Clash, General Tire, GSM Outdoors, Lew’s, Mercury, Mossy Oak, Onyx, Phoenix, Polaris, Power-Pole, REDCON1, Strike King, Suzuki, Tackle Warehouse, T-H Marine, Toyota, WIX Filters and YETI.

For complete details and updated tournament information, visit For regular Bass Fishing League updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow MLF5’s social media outlets at Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.

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