Sunday, September 21, 2014

Fort-Fla. combo leads FFCBC

Meet the new boss; same last name as the old boss.
Bryan Gustafson of Fort Frances and his partner, Brandon McMillan from Clewiston, Fla., brought in 20.29 pounds yesterday to lead the 20th-annual Fort Frances Canadian Bass Championship after Day 1.

That puts the local favourite one spot ahead of defending champs Jeff Gustafson from Kenora (no relation) and his partner, John Peterson from Bemidji, Mn.
They looked to be the top dogs of the day with an 18.76-pound haul before watching the Fort-Florida connection become the only team of the day to break the 20-pound barrier.
“We didn’t just go anywhere and crack them, we went all over and had to grind them out,” noted Bryan Gustafson, who now has gone over 20 pounds in two-straight FFCBC days after winning Division 2 last year with a mark of 20.36 with then-teammate Jamie Bruce.
“The benefit of living here is you know how to roll the dice,” he reasoned.
The Day 1 leaders reeled in their first good-sized fish around 9:30 a.m. and didn’t get their last until closer to 2 p.m.
“With a bag that size, you have to cull some of your smaller ones, but we didn’t have to do too much of that,” said Gustafson, who was anticipating a whole new ballgame today.
“The weather is supposed to get really weird [today] and I don’t know if that will come into play,” he remarked.
The top five was rounded out by three teams who departed in the latter stages of yesterday’s launch.
Connor Burton and Jeff Engstrom of Kenora racked up a total of 18.36 pounds to land in third spot while Jason Pavleck and Bill Walls of International Falls nailed down fourth place with 18.21.
Pavleck and Walls also looked to have the big fish of the day at 4.54 pounds. But they lost that crown to one of the last teams to weigh in for the day in the Minnesota duo of Scott Bonnema and Mark Fisher.
They weighed in a 4.59-pound whopper, which also helped lift them into fifth place overall on Day 1 with a total of 18 pounds even.
The Day 2 weigh-in begins at 3:30 p.m. under the big tent at the Sorting Gap Marina.
The final weigh-in tomorrow gets underway at 3 p.m., with the top 10 after Day 2 being paraded into the tent around 5 p.m.

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