Jul 05


Submitted by:  Nick Angiulo       

Candlewood Lake is unknown to much of the bass fishing community outside of the Northeast.  However, those of us lucky enough to live in proximity to the lake know it is one of the premier lakes in the country for catching mixed bags of largemouth and smallmouth bass.  It is for that reason that the New Jersey Bass Federation (NJBF) re-turned to the lake on June 17 and 18 for a two-day event.  As with all NJBF two-day events, the first prizes in both the Boater and Co-Angler Division were enhanced to $2,500 and $1,750, respectively, and the points awarded were multiplied by 1.5 times. With that in mind, 48 anglers took to the waters in mostly overcast conditions on both days and found the fishing good for both numbers and size.

Boater Division


Selawsky’s “twin” Day 1 five pounders

The Boater Division was dominated by Bill Selawsky, Jr.  Selawsky, Jr., a member of the Essex County Bassmasters came to the scales on Day 1 with the largest limit of the entire event, 17.86 pounds, to establish a one-pound lead and never looked back.  His Day 1 weight included two five pound large-mouth, with the larger fish, a 5.19 pounder, taking the Boater Division lunker.  His Day 2 limit pushed his overall weight to 32.95 pounds, enough to win the Boater Division by over three pounds.  For the victory, Sel-awsky, Jr. received the Boater Division guar-anteed first prize of $2,500 and an additional $150 for his Boater Division lunker.


Selawsky with two from Day 2



Finishing second was Selawsky’s club-mate, John McAloney. McAloney showed that consistency pays off in multi-day events as he posted weights of 14.67 pounds on Day 1 and 15.25 pounds on Day 2.  His two-day total of 29.92 pounds took the second spot by almost three quarters of a pound over the third place angler.  McAloney received $925 for second place.


Second place Boater John McAloney



The third place Boater Division finisher took a different path.  Nick Angiulo, of the Big D Valley Bassmasters, was mired in 15TH place after Day 1 with only 12.18 pounds.  However, he produced the largest limit of Day 2 weighing 17.01 pounds, rocketing him up to the third place spot in the Boater Div-ision.  For that finish, Angiulo received $495.


Nick Angiulo with two Day 2 largemouth









Co-Angler Division


The Co-Angler Division was a highly com-petitive affair, but at the end of Day 2, the most consistent angler easily captured the top spot.

The first-time NJBF Co-Angler winner, Brian Snowman, a member of the Quickfire Bassmasters, posted two of the largest limits each day to capture the Co-Angler first prize by over four pounds.  Snowman started with a solid Day 1 limit of 13.75 pounds, placing him just out of the top spot.  However, when added to his Day 2 limit of 14.21 pounds, his 27.96 pounds easily eclipsed all of the other anglers in that Division.  For the victory, Snowman received the guaranteed Co-Angler first prize of $1,750.


Brian Snowman with two nice ones

Finishing a distant second place was Ben Dain, a TBF Affiliate.  Dain was leading aft-er his Day 1 limit of 13.79 pounds but could only manage 9.99 pounds on Day 2.  Never-theless, Dain’s overall weight of 23.78 pounds was enough to capture the second place prize of $725.


The third place Co-Angler, Dave Linda-bury, a member of the Big D Valley Bass-masters, found himself in 15TH place after Day 1.  However, he rode the largest Co-Angler Division weight of the event, 15.29 pounds on Day 2, the place him in third place with 22.90 pounds.  Included in his Day 2 limit was the Co-Angler Division win-ning 4.70 pound largemouth.  Lindabury re-ceived $235 for third place and an additional $125 for the lunker.

Lindabury and his lunker










Miscellaneous Notes


  1. A total of 19 anglers brought 10 fish lim-its to the scales over the two-day event and 269 largemouth and 96 smallmouth totaling over 855 pounds were weighed in. All but 5 fish (98.63%) were released alive.


  1. As winners of the event, Bill Selawsky, Jr. and Brian Snowman are eligible to compete at New Jersey’s District 15 2017 TBF National Semi-Final event so long as they compete in the remaining Federation event.


  1. By virtue of being the highest placing eligible Ranger Boat owner in the event, Sean Loll will receive $300 in Ranger Cup bonus money.

May 25


Submitted by: Nick Angiulo
The New Jersey Bass Federation’s first point event of its 2017 tournament season scheduled for May 21, 2017, could have been epic. Nowhere else in the Northeastern region is the potential to break 25 pounds in a day more likely than the vast brackish river systems that make up the Northern Chesapeake Bay (also known colloquially as the Susquehanna Flats), However, coming into the event, the reported catches were unusually low, most likely due to the recent wide fluctuations in air and water temperatures that had many of the fish in the system in a bit of a funk. With warmer weather coming into the event, the 60 participating anglers were hopeful for a slugfest. While the slug- fest never materialized as the fishing was a grind, the event produced one of the closer three-way finishes in recent point tournament history.

Boater Division
Winning first place in the Boater Division by less than five ounces was Jason Orecchio of the Quickfire Bassmasters. Orecchio brought five fish to the scales that weighed 17.77 pounds, including something relatively uncommon for this portion of the system, smallmouth bass. Regardless, all of Orecchio’s fish were in the three to four- pound range which provided his just enough weight to hold off the second place finisher. Ore chio’s was rewarded for his Boater Division victory with the guaranteed minimum first prize of $2,000.

Finishing a close second was Manny Cruz. Cruz, a member of the United Bass Anglers, also broke the 17-pound mark with five fish for 17.48 pounds. Cruz, who has not fished Federation point events for the past few years marked his return to the competition in a big way. For second place, Cruz received $1,000.

The third place Boater Division finisher also broke the 17-pound mark, with 17.05 pounds. Brian Calloway, of the Big D Valley Bassmasters, brought that weight to the scales which placed him just above the fourth place finisher and earned him the third place $775 Boater Division prize.

With all the bigger fish weighed in at the top of the Boater Division, it was a slight surprise that the lunker fish for the Division was not caught by one of the top finishers. Rather, the lunker winning 5.31 pound largemouth was caught by Keith Kurpicki of the Warren County Bassmasters. He received $125 for his Boater Division winning lunker.

Co-Angler Division
The Co-Angler Division was a grind as many anglers found the larger 15-inch fish needed reluctant to bite. Regardless, several anglers weighed in solid fish and the winning Co-Angler brought in three fish weighing 8.91 pounds, enough to win the Division by nearly one and one-half pounds.
The Co-Angler winner, Donny Diggs, fishing as a member of the Quickfire Bass- masters, not only had the winning overall weight, he also had the Co-Angler Division winning 5.11 pound largemouth. For the victory, Diggs received the minimum guaranteed one-day Co-Angler first prize of $1,250. He also received an additional $100 for his Co-Angler Division lunker.

Finishing a relatively distant second place was Diggs’ Quickfire club mate, Mike Wotanowski. Wotanowski only managed two keeper-sized fish on the day but his 7.48 pounds was enough to capture the second place prize of $425.

The third place Co-Angler, Kevin Collins, a TBF Affiliate, also brought two fish to the scales, weighing 7.06 pounds. Collins received $250.


Miscellaneous Notes
1. Only five anglers brought five fish limits to the scales and 90 fish totaling over 295 pounds were weighed in. The per fish average weight was an impressive 3.28 pounds. All fish were released alive.
2. As winners of the event, Jason Orecchio and Donny Diggs are eligible to compete at New Jersey’s District 15 2017 TBF National Semi-Final event so long as they compete in the remaining two Federation events.
3. By virtue of being the highest placing eligible Ranger Boat owner in the event, Mike Rinaldi will receive $250 in Ranger Cup bonus money.

May 25


Submitted by: Nick Angiulo

The annual New Jersey Bass Federation’s Team Tournament pits the top six anglers from each participating New Jersey Bass Fed- eration club against one another in a two-day, cumulative weight event, and the event routinely brings New Jersey’s best bass anglers out to compete. Aside from the team portion of the event, where the top four teams received cash prizes, the top five individuals received cash prizes and the top five anglers in each division (Boater/Co-Angler) qualified to advance to the 2017 District 15 TBF National Semi-Final.

The May 18 and 19, 2017 installment was marked by firsts. This event, held under unseasonably hot conditions, produced first time winners in both the team and individual portions. Aside from the weather, the biggest challenge facing the participants was the unusually stingy biting bigger fish that live in the Northern Chesapeake Bay and its numerous rivers, creeks and tributaries. Blame could be most likely attributed to the tremendously varying early spring whether which left the fish in limbo between pre- and post-spawn. Regardless, many anglers found and caught numerous 15-inch plus bass to make the event an over- all success.
Team Portion

This year’s winning team, the Big D Valley Bassmasters, has been to every Team Tournament since it became eligible as a club in 2001. According to Nick Angiulo, its only remaining founding member, the club has come close on several occasions to winning the event but had just fallen short. Not this season! Rather, this year’s team put together an impressive performance leading from wire-to-wire marked by each angler from the squad catching at least one fish
each day, a feat that proved uncommonly difficult in this event. Moreover, the club nearly made it a sweep of all the top prizes as its top Boater, Ryan McGinty, with 33.26 pounds, just barely missed taking first overall and the club’s top Co-Angler, Kevin Kelly, with 25.69 pounds, was the top overall Co-Angler. The club’s Day 1 weight of 56.69 pounds gave it an 11-pound lead over its nearest competitors. While that sounds like a safe margin, in a body of water with so many big fish, no lead is safe. Evidence of that is the fact that two fish over six pounds (including Kevin Kelly’s 6.81 pounder) and seven other fish over five pounds were weighed in on Day 1. Rather than rest on its laurels, the squad put together an even more solid Day 2, improving their daily weight to 62.01 pounds for an overall total of 118.70 pounds and a nearly 13-pound victory. Aside from McGinty and Kelly, the team comprised of the following members: Nick Angiulo – 19.95 pounds; Glenn Savino – 15.89 pounds; Dexter Marshall – 13.01 pounds; and Bruce Stearn – 10.90 pounds.

Standing l/r – Bruce Stearn, Nick Angiulo, Glenn Savino, Dexter Marshall. Kneeling l/r – Ryan McGinty, Kevin Kell

According to Angiulo, who has fished in every one of the last 17 Team Tournaments, he is sure that the club’s other founding member and longtime Federation Board Member, Bruce Stovall, who passed away a few years ago, is somewhere looking down with pride and a wide smile on his face.

Taking second place was the Quickfire Bassmasters with 105.98 pounds. The team was led by Federation Executive Officer Jason Orecchio with 33.21 pounds. He was followed by Donny Diggs with 22.90 pounds, Brian Calloway with 22.58 pounds, Dan Schoneveld with 11.73 pounds, Brian Snow- man with 9.91 pounds and Matt Stark with 6.05 pounds. Finishing in third place was the Blazin Bass chapter with 91.36 pounds. This team was led by overall winner and Federation President Mike Keller with 33.76 pounds. He was followed by Darren Pincus with 24.48 pounds, Dan McGarry with 17.05 pounds, Sean Loll with 8.95 pounds, Art Vitale with 5.55 pounds and Joe Fleischman with 2.37 pounds.

Mike Keller with two solid fish

Individual Portion

Taking over the challenge of being the Federation President is a formidable task. To be able to do that and continue to fish at a high level is truly impressive. That’s exactly what this year’s overall individual winner of the event has done. New 2017 Federation President, Mike Keller, put together two consecutive consistent days to win the individual side of the Team Tournament for the first time. Keller’s amazing consistency gave him a very slim 0.50-pound margin of victory. On Day 1, Keller posted a 16.84-pound limit, placing him in fifth place almost two pounds off the lead. However, his nearly identical 16.92-pound Day 2 limit was enough to overtake those ahead of him and win the individual side of the event.

As mentioned above, the Day 1 leader, Ryan McGinty, fell just short as he never could catch his fifth fish on Day 2 which would have given him the victory.
Below are the top five individual finishers who received cash prizes: 1ST – Mike Keller – Blazin Bass – 33.76 lbs. 2ND – Ryan McGinty – Big D – 33.26 lbs. 3RD – Dan Goykhman – East Coast – 33.22 lbs. 4TH – Jason Orecchio – Quickfire – 33.21 lbs. 5TH – Kevin Kelly – Big D – 25.69 lbs.

Top three finishers l/r – Dan Goykhman; Mike Keller; Ryan McGinty

Additionally, the top five anglers in each division (Boater/Co-Angler) qualified to ad- vance to the 2017 District 15 TBF National Semi-Final. Those individuals are as follows:

Boater Division Co-Angler Division Mike Keller Kevin Kelly Ryan McGinty Donny Diggs Dan Goykhman Greg Trass Jason Orecchio Mike Lee John Erickson Frank Garcia

Tournament Notes
While this event did not produce the large weights that are possible on the Northern Chesapeake Bay in the spring, the results were nonetheless impressive. In this regard, the 61 anglers weighed in 242 fish over the two days. The total weight for the event was 822 pounds, with a hefty per fish average of 3.39 pounds.
Special thanks to all the anglers who volunteered to help the Tournament Staff before, during and after the event. It is sincerely appreciated.

May 23

Susquehanna Team Tournament

May 17


Tournament Procedures & Pairings for the Northern Chesapeake tournament May 21


Older posts «

» Newer posts