Category: Knockout Series

The 2018 Knockout Series Finale

Our annual Knockout Series came to a conclusion on October 28 at Lake Maspenock in Hopkinton. It was another great year with some very close matches and stiff competition. One even resulted in a tie, which was broken by big fish. Can’t get any closer than that!

We started the series with 32 anglers and ended up with just two—Ken Wood and Shawn Renes.

Shawn made it to the finals last year, but was ultimately beaten by Dave Bibo. As fate would have it, they faced off again in the semi-finals (round 4) this year, but this time Shawn got his revenge and moved on to the finals for the second year in a row.

Ken Wood got spanked in round 1 last year, losing by 30.50 inches! This year he didn’t get to exact my revenge on Bruce Levy, who himself was knocked out in round 1, but beggars can’t be choosers.

Shawn and Ken decided to try out something new for the final match this year: instead of one match, they fished two. The first took place at our Lake Rico event. It was a close one, with both anglers catching one big fish over 20 inches and four dinks, but Shawn bested Ken by two inches that day, 47.25 to 45.25.

Once again it was a tight finish at Maspenock. Ken quickly landed two fish back to back, the first at 7:08 and the second at 7:15, but it would take him the rest of the day to fill a limit and cull up one time (he caught his last two fish at 1:56 and 2:08 PM).

Shawn had an early flurry, landing four fish between 7:04 and 7:53 AM. Ultimately one of those, a 14.25, was DQ’d for the eye being covered, but a few hours later he caught another the exact same size.

Even if that fish hadn’t been DQ’d, Ken had him beat…until 2:03 PM, when Shawn landed a solid 17.50. That one sealed Ken’s fate.

On the day, Shawn won by .50 inches, 47 to 46.50 (the Knockout Series is a three-fish limit, so only the biggest three of their five from that day were counted here). Between both final matches, Shawn took the win with an overall total of 94.25 to Ken’s 91.75, a difference of 2.50 inches.

So without further ado, a huge congratulations to this year’s Knockout Series Champion: Shawn Renes. Great guy and an excellent fisherman! Hell of a match and an excellent win!

Not to be forgotten, this year’s overall Knockout Series big fish went to Edmar Junior, with his 22-inch slob caught during his round 3 match back in June. There were a number of bass over 20 inches caught this year, and a few over 21, but none big enough to take the crown and $200 from Edmar. Congrats!

In his round 4 match, Ken Wood managed to hook up with two solid bass—a 20.50 and a 21—which gave him an inch lead over previous series “big bag” leader, Donald Davis. With only one round remaining at that point, Ken only had to worry about Shawn breaking the record at Lake Rico (since they experimented with the two-match finale, only the first went toward the big fish/big limit records), and that did not happen. So this year’s biggest limit went to Ken Wood, with 57 inches, taking a bit of the sting out of his series loss, no doubt.

Thank you all for another great season! Looking forward to next year. Let’s aim for 64 anglers! Sign-ups will begin in January.


A Lesson in Irony

Well, for the second year in a row, our No Limit tournament turned out to be a lesson in irony. Only one angler caught more than five fish today!

It was a struggle.

Fish under 12 inches were abundant, but finding fish over that was a challenge for all 21 of us. Out of 61 fish submitted, only six were over 14 inches long. Awful.

Four of those six were big ones, though. Michael Andreasen dragged in a 19.50 early. I assumed that would be the lunker for the day—until I caught a 20-inch fatty, which I assumed would hold as the day’s lunker. But then Shawn Renes caught a 21.50! And then Peter Arruda was like, “Pffft,” and hauled in a 21.75, which was the big fish of the day.

Congrats, bud!

Current Angler of the Year leader, Bruce Levy, struggled for most of the day, but he finally landed four in the last two hours, which was enough to secure fifth place with 54.25 inches.

Only four anglers caught more than five fish. One of them was Mark Johnson, who took fourth place with five 12-inch slobs that went 61.25.

I didn’t catch my fifth fish until 2:30, and five was all I caught. Luckily that 20-incher was enough to hoist me into third place.

Shawn Renes has fished with us two times so far, and both times he’s come in second place. He had five fish—four dinks and a beast—that went 71.25.

(Shawn and I also fished the first half of our Knockout Series finale today. Based on each of our three biggest, he is leading me 47.25 to 45.25. We will fish again at our next tournament in two weeks and crown a winner!)

Craig Page hadn’t fished with us yet this year, and hasn’t fished much at all in fact, but that didn’t stop him from getting the “dubya” with six fish totaling 75.50. That sixth fish made all the difference! Congrats, man!

And congrats to everyone else! You had to work hard for this one.


Yeah, I may have Photoshopped my head into the picture
You can see the full results here.

Anyway, great seeing everyone again. Good to meet you, Gerard!

Our next tournament is at Lake Maspenock (aka North Pond) in Hopkinton on October 28. This will be our last regular-season tourney of the year (we’ll do a few more if the weather’s nice enough).

You can register for that one here.

See you in two weeks!


Knockout Series Sign-Up Is Live

The sign-up period for this year’s Knockout Series has begun. If you would like to participate, please let us know by commenting on the pinned sign-up post on our Facebook group or by sending an e-mail through our Contact page above.

If you’re not familiar with what the Knockout Series is, it’s a bracketed, three-fish limit, CPR (catch, photo, release), one-on-one tournament series. You fish until you’re knocked out of the competition!

Entry fee is a one-time, non-refundable (after March 14, 2017) payment of $50. Payments can be made via PayPal (preferred) or by check/money order.

Check/money order payments must be received by March 1, 2017. Cutoff for PayPal payments is midnight March 14, 2017. NO EXCEPTIONS! Pairings will be selected the following day

Anglers will be randomly paired to start and beginning on April 1 will have one month to six weeks (depending on how many anglers sign up) to get their match complete.

Each round will run for six weeks, starting April 1 (depending on ice out) until all matches are complete. The exact time periods are as follows:

Round 1: Apr 1–May 12
Round 2: May 13–Jun 23
Round 3: Jun 24–Aug 4
Round 4: Aug 5–Sep 15 (last round with 16 anglers)
Round 5: Sep 16–Oct 28 (last round with 32 anglers)

Winners of each round move on until one angler remains victorious above all others.

We need 16 anglers minimum and will cap it at 32.

You can find the official rules here and FAQs here. Please note that the rules for the Knockout Series are more relaxed than those for our regular tournaments. If you plan to fish both series, make sure you know the rules.

If we’ve missed anything or you have questions, let us know.