Payson anglers Tom Karavities and Adam Combs are clinging to first place in the Western Outdoor News (WON) overall standings after seven team tournaments. The two have boated 59.77 pounds of bass for 684.80 points to hold down the top spot over the runner-up team of Lon Armel and Steve Foutch who have racked up 54.79 pounds and 584.40 points.
Jake Randall and Chuck Thompson, both Rim Country fishermen are in third with 48.42 pounds and 583.40 points.
“Jake and Chuck are not that far behind” said WON Arizona Tournament Director Tracy Purtee.
With the WON spring season at an end, the circuit resumes in September when the Angler of the Year will be crowned and championship pot money doled out.
In a WON Avid Angler tournament held May 18 and 19 at Roosevelt Lake, Kevin Smith and Todd Belzner took first place weighing in 10.87 pounds. In their catch was the tournament’s “Big Fish” — a 5.19-pound lunker.
The win kept the pair solidly in first place in the Avid Angler season-long standings after eight tournaments.
The pair’s total weight of 63.19 pounds far out exceeds the 48.06 pounds caught by the runner-up team off Joseph Ruiz and Robert Castro.
Following the tournament, Smith and Belzner were crowned the WON Anglers of the Year and will have their tournament entry fees paid for the entire 2013-14 season.
In the WON High School division tournament standings, Hayden Frey and Kirk Russell accumulated 48.87 pounds and 593 points to win the prep title.
Both were named high school Anglers of the Year.
The Payson High team of Layne Chitwood and Tanner Purtill finished fourth with 24.96 pounds at 412 points.
Also from Payson, Spencer Herrera and Matt Davis were fifth overall (30.15 pounds and 393 points).
“I loved running a high school circuit and can’t wait until next year,” said Purtee.