Donna and John Branstetter Shine on Lake Greenwood
Fourteen teams showed up for South Carolina's season finale on Lake Greenwood on June 13th. Summer conditions were starting to show as temperatures hit the 90 degree mark. Only three 5-fish limits were weighed.
Donna and John Branstetter took first place with a 5-fish sack weighing 12.4 pounds. In the bag was Donna's 5.9 pounder. Her fish claimed the Ladies Big Bass prize and also tournament big fish honors. Their success came tossing Zoom trick worms to brush in 12 to 18 foot depths. Donna and John also mentioned their effective Abu Garcia Veritas and Villian 2.0 series rods which helped make their "perfect" fishing trip. We're sure their new Dodge Ram also helped.
Tammy and J.B. Wicker took second place with 10.6 pounds in a 4-fish sack. Tammy's 5.3 pounder was a significant contributor to their great finish. The Wickers also found their fish on brush in 18 to 20 feet. Carolina rigged Ol' Monster worms were their key.
Craig Sahms claimed Mens Big Bass with a 2.9 pounder. This fish bit a weightless worm early in the day in the shade of a seawall. Craig described seeing other nice fish cruising the wall, but he couldn't entice them to bite.
Susan and John Mills grabbed third place with 10.1 pounds. Victoria and Dale Goff took forth place with a 5-fish limit at 8.6 pounds. Ana and Brad Rutherford got fifth place with 5.6 pounds.
After weigh-in, anglers headed for a late lunch in the shade of the porch at nearby Harris Landing. Presentation of Lake Greenwood awards was followed by awards and recognition of 2015 season accomplishments.
David Ashmore was awarded a gallon of Mercury Optimax Oil for his Mens Big Bass of the Year. His hefty 7.4 pounder came early in the season on Lake Murray. The Mercury oil was contributed by Strickland Marine of Anderson and Seneca, South Carolina.
Donna Branstetter got Ladies Big Bass of the Year for her Lake Greenwood 5.9 pounder. John Mills presented Donna a crystal recognizing her accomplishment. The crystal is in memory of Donna Poteat, a cherished South Carolina angler who passed away late last year.
Prize packs were presented to all of the teams. The packs included EltaMD sunscreen made available through Doctor Caroline Price, a Greenville, SC, dermatologist. EltaMD is an outstanding product, offering great sun protection, long lasting and easily applied. A few "elders" took the opportunity to offer counsel to more "junior" anglers on the long term consequences of sun exposure. Some sample packs, also made available at the morning registration, were eagerly put to good use before the sun came up.
Yo-Zuri contributed re-introduced "Hardcore X Shad" crankbaits to each of the teams. This bait was a hot item in the Carolinas prior to becoming unavailable several years ago. Yo-Zuri listened to the vocal local anglers and brought back the Hardcore series for 2015.
River Runner Baits supplied packages of plastic "lizards" to each team. These baits are proving themselves to be highly effective. River Runner's lizards actually float, significantly increasing buoyancy and action on a Carolina rig. They have a soft natural texture and are very durable.
Barry and Romaine Descaro contributed Choo Choo Lure packs to each of the teams (www.choochoolures.com). Barry has been impressed with several of the baits in the Choo Choo product line.
Special thanks to all of the sponsors supporting the South Carolina Couples. Their gifts and prizes allowed teams to …. "all feel like winners at each tournament" ….. borrowing a nice quote from Kelly Wilcox, one of the division’s anglers.
Several South Carolina Couples are looking forward to the National Championship on Old Hickory this fall. The 2016 South Carolina Couples Division schedule is expected to include a November “pre-season” tournament on Clarks Hill followed by March-June events on other lakes.
All ABA American Couples Series events involve a team format with each team composed of one man and one woman. Contestants between 14 and 18 years old may participate with a parent’s written permission. The top angling couples from across the nation earn the right to compete in the annual American Bass Anglers Couples Series National Championship tournament.
American Bass Anglers commitment is to provide low cost, close to home tournaments for the weekend angler and at the same time offer each competitor an upward path for individual angler progression. For more information about American Bass Anglers and the RAM American Fishing Tour, The RAM Weekend Bass Series or the American Couples Series, visit www.americanbassanglers.com or call 256-232-0406.
Learn More About the American Couples Series
Check out the Triton 20 TrX