HUDDLESTON — Danville’s Dennis Siggers combined his knowledge of Smith Mountain Lake and his experience fishing there into a payday Saturday at Parkway Marina in Bedford County.
Siggers caught a five-bass limit weighing 19 pounds, 1 ounce to claim victory in the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Shenandoah Division tournament. He earned $2,585 for his triumph.
“I would say the key to my win was my 30 years of experience on this lake,’’ said Siggers, who earned his first victory in FLW competition.
“On Tuesday (of last week), they filled the lake up and I saw the bass swimming on the bank lines. So I started working down the bank lines, just throwing a topwater (bait),’’ Siggers said.
Siggers won the tournament by more than two pounds.
“I knew I’d catch them. I didn’t know that I’d catch 19 pounds, but it all worked out nicely,’’ Siggers said.
Of the top 10 finishers in the boater division, eight hailed from Virginia, one was from Louisiana and one was from Tennessee.
The Shenandoah Division has staged two tournaments on Smith Mountain Lake this year.
Siggers said he threw a Rebel Pop-R topwater (bait) until 10:30 a.m. (the tournament launched from Parkway Marina at 6 a.m.), then switched to a green-pumpkin and purple-colored Zoom Trick Worm.
“I would say that I caught around 10 keepers, and of the five that I brought to the scale, three came on the topwater bait and two came on the Trick Worm,’’ Siggers said.
“My big one came on the Pop-R,’’ Siggers said.
That “big one” weighed 5 pounds, 12 ounces and enabled Siggers to claim the Boater Big Bass award of $235.
The top 10 weights ranged from Siggers’ 19-1 to 13-1 which enabled Tennessee’s Michael Delvisco to finish 10th.
Only four fishermen in the top 10 caught limits weighing more than 13 pounds. In that group were fourth-place finisher William Johnson of Moneta (five bass, 14 pounds, 7 ounces) and third-place finisher Rick Hawkins of Roanoke (five bass, 15 pounds, 7 ounces).
Bobby Rakes of Max Meadows won the Co-angler Division with a five-bass limit weighing 12 pounds, 5 ounces. He pocketed $1,250 for his win.
The top 10 in the division was comprised of competitors from Virginia, North Carolina, Maryland, Delaware and Pennsylvania.
Only Rakes and second-place finisher Austin Burdette of Pembroke were able to catch a limit weighing more than 10 pounds.
The top 45 boaters and co-anglers in the region based on points, along with the five winners in each qualifying event earn berths in the BFL Regional Championships, October 3-5 on Lake Hartwell in Seneca, South Carolina.