It was a test of perseverance, planning, strategy, and in the end, survival.
When all was said and done, and the hot, humid Louisiana air cleared, the Texas team of Jordan Sanders and Jason Holleman survived and won the first-of-its-kind Crappie Masters Bracket Showdown on the Ouachita River in Monroe, Louisiana on August 4th, 5th, and 6th sponsored the Monroe/West Monroe CVB.
Sanders and Holleman survived against a very strong field by staying consistent over 3 days of competition, and with a Crappie Masters Championship Saturday weight of 10.21 pounds, narrowly defeated the hard-luck runner-up team of Hayden and Dan Jeffries, who actually wound up weighing in the most total weight over the 3 days.
However, the Bracket Showdown came down to the Championship Saturday weights only for the final 12 teams, and the Jeffries came up short, weighing in 10.12 pounds and allowing the Sanders and Holleman team to walk away with their first Crappie Masters win and the $10,000 first place prize.
28 teams started the Bracket Showdown quest with teams competing against each other in a random draw, meaning some of the favorites faced off against each other on day one, dropping one of those teams into the losers bracket to fight their way back for the opportunity to be in the final 12 to possibly win on Saturday.
After day one, the 14 teams in the losers bracket competed against each other for 3 available spots to fish on Saturday. Those teams included Chad Turner, Nick DeWolf, and Terry Richard/Roy Hoy.
On the day one winner’s side, there were two wildcard spots available for the two losing teams with the highest weights. Those teams were Mike Vallentine/Ethan Decker, and Les and Keaton Standstipher.
That set the 12-team field for a one-day “highest weight wins” Showdown where Sanders and Holleman stayed with their game plan, staying consistent on the way to victory! Their 3-day weights were 10.27, 10.24, and 10.21 lbs. That consistency led them to their 1st Crappie Masters Major Victory, a $10,000 check, and put them just 1 point behind in the Angler Team of the Year race.
It was a hard-luck tournament for the runner-up team of Hayden and Dan Jeffries, who actually weighed in over 2 pounds more than the rest of the field over the three days of action. However, due to their second-round draw against another strong team of Chris Fields and Jared Riser, the Jeffries had to go for broke and seemingly burned up their primary spot.
On Championship Saturday, the quality of fish that had been there on day one and two were gon, leaving them to scramble for 10.12 pounds, their lowest weight of the 3 days. The Jeffries team weighed in 10.79, 11.87, and 10.12 pounds each day and took home $3,000.
3rd place went to the team of Mike Vallentine and Ethan Decker who weighed in 9.43 pounds on Championship Saturday and took home $2,000.
4th place and CarZone USA Big Fish went to Les and Keaton Standstipher, who managed 9.19 pounds on Championship Saturday, which was good for $1,200 dollars. Their 1.94-pound river dandy held on to win the CarZone USA Big Fish Bonus of $2,000.
Rounding out the top 5 was the team of Wesley Miller and Justin Smart, who brought in 9.09 pounds on Saturday and received $600 for their effort.
The first Crappie Masters Bracket Showdown and its format was a resounding success. We thank the Monroe/West Monroe CVB for hosting the event and the hospitality that was shown.
Fantasy Fishing Results
FindTheFish and Redline Fishing tied for the win in Fantasy this week, and via tiebreaker it was FindTheFish who earned the seventh Fantasy Fishing win of the season with a score of 489.32 fantasy points at the Bracket Showdown. The best possible score in Fantasy Fishing this week would have been 526.08 points.
You can click here to see the full Fantasy Fishing results from the Bracket Showdown.
On the overall season Leaderboard, River Bottom Boys Guide Service leads the way after seven events with 5,077.38 points, with Sword Fighters and AustinCarey6969 close behind in 2nd and 3rd. Click here to see the Fantasy Fishing 2022 Standings.
Crappie Masters Rend Lake Final Tournament Results
- Jordan Sanders – Jason Holleman
- Hayden Jeffries – Dan Jeffries
- Mike Vallentine – Ethan Decker
- Keaton Standstipher – Les Standstipher
- Wesley Miller – Justin Smart
- Trey Underwood – Tucker Underwood
- Terry Richard – Roy Hoy
- Frank Haidusek – David Lane
- Cliff Bammes
- Chad Turner
- Lamar Bunting
- Nick DeWolf
- Chris Holtzclaw – Phil Holtzclaw
- Chris Fields – Jared Riser
- JoJo Baker – TJ Prince1
- Mark Strunk – Jim Churchill
- Kevin Dinkins – Scotty Johnson
- Richard Faulk – Ashley Faulk
- Ronnie Turner – Chad Preston
- William Whetstone – Ronald Parker
- Lance Sullentrop
- Craig Nichols – Rachel Criner
- Chris Fuller – Sandy Fuller
- Steve Adams
- Phillis McDonald – Danny McDonald
- Bobby Nola Jr – Bobby Nola Sr
- Earnie Ode – Neal Pace
- Ross Whitney – Kody Whitney