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Buntings Blow Out Of Eufaula With Hard Earned Victory

The Power Pole team of Charlie and Travis Bunting battled high winds, cold temperatures and a strong field to take home the championship at the Crappie Masters One Day National Qualifier on Lake Eufaula, OK, sponsored by The Renewable Fuels Association "Ethanol Fueled With Pride", American Ethanol, Bass Pro Shops, and the Lake Eufaula Association. Mother Nature gave the teams who chose to battle her, all they could handle providing beautiful weather with reports of 200 fish per day catches until the day before the tournament. Friday morning brought extremely severe thunderstorms prior to daybreak and again during the noon hour leaving behind rising water, cold temperatures, and 25-30 mph winds to deal with on Championship Saturday making many areas on the expansive Lake Eufaula unreachable, and unfishable. That's where teams that were able to adjust and adapt shined, the Buntings for example. Charlie had prefished all week and on Friday went to a new area and scanned brushpiles marking areas that held numerous fish and made the decision to start Championship Saturday with his son Travis in that area, an area that had produced numerous 2 pound plus fish earlier in the week. That was not to be the case on Saturday. The Power Pole team had one small fish through late morning, when a critical championship winning decision was made to go extremely shallow in a different area targeting fish that were getting ready to, and or spawning which produced the winning weight of 10.84 pounds for seven fish. The Buntings were spider rigging in a foot and a half water catching larger fish on black and glow chartreuse Muddy Water baits. Another critical decision they made was to use 12 foot B’n’M Poles as opposed to their normal 16 foot B’n’M Poles to deal with the wind. In fact Travis stated they were fishing so shallow that the swivels on their double jig rigs were out of the water! They also stated their Power Poles, Humminbird electronics, and Minn Kota trolling motor were vital in their success along with their Mercury powered boat to get to the winning area. The team won $3400.00 for the victory along with the additional $250.00 Missouri Corn Growers Association/American Ethanol bonus for using E10 fuel in their boat, and another $100.00 Jenko Fishing bonus for using the new Jenko Crappie Net. Charlie and Travis Bunting are sponsored by Power Pole, Ranger Boats, Mercury Motors, Humminbird, Minn Kota, B’n’M Poles, Off Shore Tackle, Muddy Water Baits, Vicious Fishing, Tite-Lok Rod Holders, Missouri Goldfish Hatchery and Dub-L-Seats. 


The runner up slot was filled by the Heartland Fish Fry and King Crappie Pre Fish Gear team of Josh Gowan and Alex Rude who made a run at the Buntings tipping the scales with 10.39 pounds good for the 2nd place check of $1700.00 and with a $100.00 Grizzly Jig gift certificate for finishing as the top Male/Female team. Gowan and Rude were spider rigging minnows on B’n’M Poles in 5 to 6 feet of water with the bite 3 to 5 foot deep. Gowan also credited his Humminbird electronics and Minn Kota trolling motor for not only finding the quality fish, but on an extremely windy day, his Minn Kota trolling motor the power to stay on them. Gowan and Rude are sponsored by Heartland Fish Fry, King Crappie Pre Fish Gear, B’n’M Poles, Canyon Coolers, Ellis Battery, Crappie Magnet, Ego Nets, Rod Sox, Hi Tech Stuff, and Navionics.

Finishing third was the team of Beau Wilkins and Dillon Hackler, who call Lake Eufaula their home lake, and also made a run at the Buntings being the last team to weigh and weighing in 10.28 pounds good for a third place finish and the $850.00 check that went with it. Wilkins and Hackler also weighed in the big fish of the tournament, a 1.87 pound Lake Eufaula dandy that garnered them an additional $518.00. The team two poled jigged in 5 to 10 feet of water catchingtheir weigh fish only two feet down. The team took advantage of their Mercury powered boat and Minn Kota trolling motor to get to areas they knew had a history of producing quality fish. Wilkins and Hackler are sponsored by Red Neck Rubber and Huckabee Rods. 

Fourth place with 9.83 pounds was the Oklahoma team of Andy Blizzard and Brian Young. They received a check for $600.00. 

Tom Snyder and Cory Carter finished in fifth place with 9.59 pounds and received a check for $400.00. 

Second big fish of the tournament was a 1.74 pounder weighed in by the team of Chris Buck and Darin Young who received $222.00 for the fish.

Click HERE to download full tournament results. 

Special thanks to local sponsors that include: Lake Eufaula Association, Eufaula Chamber of Commerce, Jellystone Park Camp Resort, Lakeview Landing Motel, Eufaula Cove Marina, VFW Post 8798.

Special thanks to our National Sponsors that include: Renewable Fuels Association, American Ethanol, Bass Pro Shops, Missouri Soybean Merchandising Council, Missouri Corn Growers Association, Humminbird, Minn Kota, Bobby Garland Crappie Baits, Prefish Gear, Power-Pole, Heartland Fish Fry, Ozark Rods, Skinzit, Mercury Motors, Millennium Marine, Off Shore Tackle, Jenko Fishing, Navionics, Spike-It, B’n’M Poles, Tite Lok Rod Holders, Midsouth Tackle, Slider, Crappie Now, Crappieholic, American Angler, Timmy Tom’s Jig Company, Valley Fashions, Crazy Angler, Grizzly Jig Company, Everharts Outdoor Store, Marine Metal Products, Fish-D-Funk, Ardent, Rod Safe, Zeko Shoes, Crappie King Cakes, Lake Fork Trophy Lures, The Original Rod Sox,, Monster Crappie Media and Huffman Publishing, and KMMO Brad & Brian in the Outdoors.