Thursday, July 25, 2024

Bonnie’s Brookman Wins Phoenix Bass Fishing League Event at Rend Lake


Boater winner Adam Brookman of Bonnie, Illinois, and Strike-King co-angler winners David Adams of Bloomington, Illinois and Chase Johnson of Quicy, Illinois.
Adams and Johnson Tie for Win in Strike King Co-Angler Division

SESSER, Ill. (July 1, 2024) – Boater Adam Brookman of Bonnie, Illinois, caught a five-bass limit weighing 14 pounds, 8 ounces, Saturday to win the MLF Phoenix Bass Fishing League (BFL) Presented by T-H Marine on Rend Lake. The tournament was the second event of the season for the BFL Illini Division. Brookman earned $6,726, including the lucrative $3,000 Phoenix MLF Contingency Bonus, for his victory.

The Rend Lake tournament was a classic “grind” for Brookman. To compete against the best local sticks on a small lake, he kept it simple, kept his head down and toughed it out, getting just five keeper bites all day long.

“I targeted main-lake rock points and riprap stretches with a jig, a Jig Shack shaky head and a crankbait. Pretty basic,” he said. “I practiced a few evenings this week and just stumbled upon some fish and just kind of grinded it out.”

Brookman said four of his keepers came on rocks and one came from a laydown.

“I was running six or eight spots,” he added. “I usually do a lot of running around, but I actually did less than what I typically do. I was just kind of rotating through some proven areas that usually pan out.”

Brookman thanked his partners at Rend Lake Sporting Goods for their support. This is his first BFL win on the boater side, to go with a previous co-angler win. To earn the win on Rend Lake was extra special for Brookman.

“It’s kind of cool because my dad used to take me to weigh-ins when I was 8 or 10 years old whenever the BFL would come to Rend Lake or some of the local lakes,” he said. “I always thought it would be kind of a cool deal to get to walk across the stage. I just kind of got lucky and pulled it off. It was kind of neat to see it come full circle.”

The top 10 boaters finished the tournament:

1st:        Adam Brookman, Bonnie, Ill., five bass, 14-8, $6,726 (includes $3,000 Phoenix MLF Contingency Bonus)
2nd:       Mark O’Brien, Marion, Ill., five bass, 14-3, $1,713
3rd:       Riley Walk, Neoga, Ill., five bass, 13-13, $1,141
4th:        Greg Mullins, Mount Vernon, Ill., four bass, 11-4, $799
5th:        Ethan Fields, Breese, Ill., five bass, 11-2, $685
6th:        Curt Erpenbach, Anderson, Ind., four bass, 11-1, $628
7th:        Toby Corn, Paducah, Ky., four bass, 10-11, $571
8th:        Gary Schild, Mundelein, Ill., three bass, 10-10, $639
9th:        William Walker, Mulkeytown, Ill., five bass, 9-6, $457
10th:     Terry Holsapple, Greenup, Ill., three bass, 8-11, $400

Complete results can be found at

Jeffrey Lee of Olney, Illinois, caught a bass that weighed 5 pounds, 7 ounces, and earned the Berkley Big Bass Boater award of $430.

David Adams of Bloomington, Illinois, and Chase Johnson of Quincy, Illinois, tied for the win in the Strike King co-angler division Saturday with 10 pounds, 4 ounces. Adams brought four bass to the scale, while Johnson weighed a five-bass limit. They each took home $1,284.

The top 10 Strike King co-anglers finished:

1st:        David Adams, Bloomington, Ill., four bass, 10-4, $1,284
1st:        Chase Johnson, Quincy, Ill., five bass, 10-4, $1,284
3rd:       Troy Boley, Mahomet, Ill., three bass, 9-3, $571
4th:        Caleb Peck, Charleston, Ill., three bass, 8-0, $400
5th:        Elmo Rogers, Albion, Ill., four bass, 7-10, $343
6th:        Kim Sapetti, Chatham, Ill., two bass, 6-12, $314
7th:        Zach Brookman, Opdyke, Ill., two bass, 5-14, $285
8th:        Peyton Keathley, Ashland, Mo., two bass, 5-2, $257
9th:        Ryan Murphy, Paris, Ill., two bass, 4-15, $228
10th:     Jay Fields, Breese, Ill., one bass, 4-12, $415

Jay Fields of Breese, Illinois, earned the Berkley Big Bass co-angler award of $215, catching a bass that weighed in at 4 pounds, 12 ounces – the largest co-angler catch of the day.

After two events, Riley Walk of Neoga, Illinois, leads the Fishing Clash Illini Division Angler of the Year (AOY) race with 495 points, while Chase Johnson of Quincy, Illinois, leads the Fishing Clash Illini Division Co-Angler of the Year race with 494 points.

The next event for BFL Illini Division anglers will be held July 13, at the Ohio River in Paducah, Kentucky. 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 the 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, PowerStop Brakes, 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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