Alabama Superstar Catches 82-9 to Win by Narrow 4-Ounce Margin over Tennessee’s David Walker, Earns Third Bass Pro Tour Victory of Season and Another $100,000 Top Prize
For just the second time in Bass Pro Tour history, one angler has won three events in a single season. Googan Baits pro Dustin Connell of Clanton, Alabamacaught 20 scorable smallmouth bass weighing 82 pounds, 9 ounces Thursday to win the Major League Fishing (MLF) Bass Pro Tour Bally Bet Stage Seven on Mille Lacs Lake Presented by Minn Kota in Onamia, Minnesota and earn the top prize of $100,000. The win was his second consecutive victory, after claiming victory at New York’s Lake Cayuga last month, and his third of the season – he also won Stage Three at Alabama’s Lewis Smith Lake.
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Googan Baits pro Dustin Connell of Clanton, Alabama, caught 20 scorable smallmouth bass weighing 82 pounds, 9 ounces Thursday to win the Major League Fishing (MLF) Bass Pro Tour Bally Bet Stage Seven on Mille Lacs Lake Presented by Minn Kota in Onamia, Minnesota and earn the top prize of $100,000. (Photo: Business Wire)
Link to Hi-Res Photo of Stage Seven Mille Lacs Lake Winner Dustin Connell
Link to HD Video – Fish-Catch Highlights of Championship Round Day 5 on Mille Lacs Lake
Link to Photo Gallery of Dustin Connell Highlights
Link to Photo Gallery of Day 6 – All Angler Highlights
Connell’s Championship Round didn’t start off too hot. Through his first two-and-a-half hours of fishing, he was only able to muster three scorable bass for 13-6. Although one of those three was a 6-pounder, Connell knew his first period wasn’t what it needed to be to win.
“I started out this morning really slow,” Connell said. “I felt like I couldn’t find a bass. Then I had 4-foot waves rolling into my boat, so that wasn’t great. Finally, I found my zone and I settled in during the second period.”
Connell exploded in the second period, catching eight bass for 30-15, shooting him into second place, right below tournament leader, Dayton, Tennessee’s Michael Neal. That second period was made possible thanks to a waypoint Connell marked during his Knockout Round on Wednesday with time winding down in the day.