LEESBURG, Fla. - The bass fishing team finished 69th and 108th in a 163 boat field at the FLW National Championship in Florida. Held at the Harris Chain of Lakes, teams must qualify to fish at the FLW National Championship.
Jausel and Phillips' 20th place showing at the FLW Open on Kentucky Lake secured their spot in the event.
Beckmann and Johnson qualified through their 14th place finish at the FLW Central Qualifier held on Lake of the Ozarks.
Following a 15 hour drive to Leesburg, the team began practice on the Harris Chain of Lakes. Both teams found the lakes challenging, as this event represented their first time fishing Florida waterways. Despite a tough practice and changing weather conditions, both teams were able to locate fish during the day and a half practice period.
While day one of the championship started off calm and warm with temperatures hovering around 75 degrees, the beautiful weather would not last. As weigh in time neared, winds increased and a torrents of rain began falling. The downpour continued through the entirety of the weigh in, but both teams were able to put together a five fish limit. Beckmann and Johnson weighed 9-14 pounds with their teammates Jausel and Phillips bringing in a slightly better bag, weighing 10-3 pounds.
For day two, skies cleared and temperatures dropped, with many anglers anticipating more difficult fishing conditions. Conditions did prove tougher for Jausel and Phillips who managed three fish weighing 5-5. However, Beckmann & Johnson had a stronger day, weighing in at 11-11. Their weight was supported in large part by a 5 pound kicker largemouth bass.
The larger day two weight provided Beckmann and Johnson with a rise in the standings, finishing 69th place. The smaller day two bag settled Jausel and Phillips in 108th.
The championship marks the start of another season for the team with multiple opportunities to qualify for the Championship again next year.
The schedule will take the team to Table Rock Lake, Kentucky Lake, Lake Hartwell, The Upper Mississippi River, and The Ohio River.