Kansas State anglers Travis Blenn and Kyle Alsop brought home more than just a new Ranger fishing boat from their final day of fishing Friday at the YETI FLW College Fishing National Championship on Alabama’s Lake Wheeler.
Alsop, a member of last year’s Bassmaster College Series National Championship-winning team, and his teammate posted a three-day total of 44 pounds, 12 ounces, including an 11-pound, 11-ounce bag on the final day of competition to retain their first-place spot ahead of defending tournament champions Gettys Brannon and Patrick Walters, of South Carolina, with room the spare.
“We really didn’t think we had enough,” Blenn said in a news release. “We had been catching bigger fish all week, and today we only got one decent bite, so we just didn’t think we had it.”
Both anglers are Kansas natives — Alsop is originally from Overland Park, while Blenn hails from Westmoreland. More than 130 teams competed in the national tournament, with Alsop and Blenn the only team representing a Kansas school.
“This is unbelievable,” Alsop said in the release. “This is going to be my last college tournament ever, so to go out like this is unreal. I’m at a loss for words.”
The team mostly used a green pumpkin Zoom Brush Hog with the tails dyed chartreuse, though they rigged it in several different ways depending on how they were fishing, including Carolina rig, Texas rig and on a 1/2-ounce Big Bite Baits Swing Head.
Blenn and Alsop led by only a few ounces after Day 2 of the tournament, jumping to the top spot ahead of Bethel’s Evan Owrey and Kristopher Queen after finish the first day in third place. Walters and Brannon surged back into the No. 2 spot on Friday after giving up their Day 1 lead on Thursday.
With the Ranger Z175 boat and its 90-hp Evinrude motor in tow, the Wildcats’ prize winnings totaled $29,400. The Gamecocks took home $5,200 in prizes for the second-place finish and Bethel won $4,000.
The pair also will square off Saturday for a spot in the FLW Forest Wood Cup, which offers a $300,000 payday to the winner.
YETI FLW COLLEGE FISHING NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP
Top 10 results May 31-June 2
At Wheeler Lake, Decatur, Ala.
Anglers – College – 3-day total – Prize
1. Travis Blenn & Kyle Alsop – Kansas State – 44-12 (15) – Ranger Z175 with 90-hp Evinrude
2. Patrick Walters & Gettys Brannon – South Carolina – 43-0 (15) – $5,200
3. Evan Owrey & Kristopher Queen – Bethel – 42-11 (15) – $4,000
4. Nicholas Joiner & Tyler Stewart – Louisiana-Monroe – 38-5 (15) – $3,000
5. Brett Clark & Jacob Keith – East Texas Baptist – 38-3 (15) – $2,000
6. Gabriel Dubois & Brandon Heizer – Missouri – 37-6 (15) – N/A
7. Logan Pollman & Tyler Sheppard – Slippery Rock – 34-3 (15) – N/A
8. Chandler Christian & Lance Freeman – Murray State – 31-13 (15) – N/A
9. Brandon Simoneaux & Colby Ogden – Lamar – 31-2 (12) – N/A
10. Ryan Habenicht & Daniel Marshall – Oregon – 24-6 (10) – N/A
For complete results, click here.