Edwin Evers Comes from Behind to Win 2016 Bassmaster Classic

Atlas Jack Plate
MonsterTopAd
Strike King
Power Pole
Lews Fishing
Lews Fishing

Edwin Evers 2016 Bassmaster Classic Champion - photo by Dan O'Sullivan - AdvancedAngler (Large) (Custom)

Edwin Evers 2016 Bassmaster Classic Champion – photo by Dan O’Sullivan

TULSA, Okla. — For the first two days of the GEICO Bassmaster Classic presented by GoPro, the buzz centered around local sensation Jason Christie of nearby Park Hill, Okla.

But on the final day, another of Oklahoma’s favorite sons stole the show.

Edwin Evers of Talala, Okla., caught an incredible 29 pounds, 3 ounces of bass from Grand Lake O’ the Cherokees Sunday to push his three-day total weight to 60-7. The epic finish was enough to help him storm past Christie and the rest of the Classic field to earn a $300,000 payday and a spot in professional bass fishing history.

The win was Evers’ 11th with B.A.S.S., but his first time to raise the Classic trophy.

“It hasn’t quite hit me yet,” said Evers, who was fishing his 15th Classic. “I don’t know when it will. But I know 29 pounds on the last day of the Classic is big.”

Evers certainly didn’t seem like he was ready to win a Classic championship earlier in the week.

He spent most of Friday’s first round fishing shallow rocks with a crankbait. The pattern had worked well for him before competition began, but he believes it was zapped by the changing conditions.

He brought in only four fish that weighed 13-12.

“That pattern was really strong in practice, but it was going away,” Evers said. “The water was warming, and it just was not happening. I knew I had to do something different, and I feel like I made a really good decision that second day.”

Evers practiced what he called “damage control” during Saturday’s second round by making a long run up the Neosho River. He used a spinnerbait and a flipping stick to catch 17-8 and vault himself into third place.

“You could have a hundred Classics on Grand, and 99 times out of a hundred it wouldn’t be won with what I did the second day. It just helped me get back in it, as tough as things were.”

One factor that made things so tough the first two days was the lack of wind on Grand Lake. With the water calm and flat, bass hanging out in the shallows were skittish and reluctant to bite.

The conditions were so calm, in fact, that Evers neglected to go to a spot in the Elk River where he had caught some big fish on windy days in practice. But with strong winds blowing Sunday, he decided to make the run to the Elk and see if he could start his day with a big fish.

He did — and then he added four more big ones to bring in a five-bass limit that ranked as the heaviest of the three-day event by almost 9 pounds.

“I went in there just to try and get a couple of big bites,” Evers said. “I caught a couple of 7-pounders there in practice. But it was real windy and blowing when I caught those fish, and it had to be that way to catch them in there.”

Mother Nature toyed with him a little early, but the conditions eventually played right into his hands.

“When I got in there and the wind wasn’t blowing, I was getting antsy,” Evers said. “Then I caught one of those big ones, and it just settled me down. I knew I could make something happen in there.

“I still wasn’t expecting to catch 29 pounds, but it all worked out.”

The magic bait for Evers on his magic day was a 5/16-ounce jig that he helped design for Andy’s Custom Bass Lures. It was green, brown and orange, but he said the material used to build the bait was the most important element.

“Andy is one of the few guys where you can still buy that old flat brown rubber,” Evers said. “In clear water, that’s the deal.”

While parts of Grand Lake were heavily stained this week, Evers found crystal-clear water in the Elk River.

“I was focusing on a flat that the current was hitting really hard,” Evers said. “It’s a flat with water coming over the top of it, and it has all types of laydowns. The water was so clear I could see the fish in there.”

Evers is the third straight angler to win the Classic in his home state, following South Carolina angler Casey Ashley’s win last year on Lake Hartwell and Alabamian Randy Howell’s victory in 2014 on Lake Guntersville.

For much of the week, it seemed like Christie would be the Oklahoma angler to hold that distinction. But after landing five-bass limits that weighed 20-14 and 16-11 the first two days, he managed only four fish that weighed 12-9.

Christie caught all of his fish using a heavy spinnerbait with a swimbait trailer.
“All of the rain we had during the winter really made this tournament interesting,” Christie said. “I would love to have gone out there and thrown a Rogue (jerkbait) the whole time. That’s what I prepared for in December.

“But that’s what the Classic is all about — changing conditions. It’s a tough tournament to win.”

Marty Robinson of Lyman, S.C., earned the GoPro Big Bass Award of $1,000 for his Day 1 bass weighing 7 pounds.

2016 Bassmaster Classic Title Sponsor: GEICO

2016 Bassmaster Classic Presenting Sponsors: GoPro

2016 Bassmaster Classic Platinum Sponsor: Toyota

2016 Bassmaster Classic Premier Sponsors: GoPro, Huk, Humminbird, Mercury, Minn Kota, Nitro Boats, Skeeter Boats, Triton Boats, Yamaha, Berkley

2016 Bassmaster Classic Outdoors Expo Presenting Sponsor: DICK’S Sporting Goods

2016 Bassmaster Classic Local Partners: Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Tulsa, Visit Tulsa, Tulsa Regional Chamber, Grand Lake Association

About B.A.S.S.
B.A.S.S. is the worldwide authority on bass fishing and keeper of the culture of the sport, providing cutting edge content on bass fishing whenever, wherever and however bass fishing fans want to use it. Headquartered in Birmingham, Ala., the 500,000-member organization’s fully integrated media platforms include the industry’s leading magazines (Bassmaster and B.A.S.S. Times), website (Bassmaster.com), television show (The Bassmasters on ESPN2), social media programs and events. For more than 45 years, B.A.S.S. has been dedicated to access, conservation and youth fishing.

The Bassmaster Tournament Trail includes the most prestigious events at each level of competition, including the Bassmaster Elite Series, Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Open Series, B.A.S.S. Nation, Carhartt Bassmaster College Series presented by Bass Pro Shops, Costa Bassmaster High School Series, Toyota Bonus Bucks Bassmaster Team Championship and the ultimate celebration of competitive fishing, the GEICO Bassmaster Classic presented by GoPro.

2016 GEICO Bassmaster Classic presented by GoPro 3/4-3/6
Grand Lake O’ The Cherokees, Tulsa  OK.
(ANGLER) Standings Day 3

Angler                   Hometown              No./lbs-oz  Pts   Total $$$

1.  Edwin Evers            Talala, OK              14  60-07    0 $300,000.00
Day 1: 4   13-12     Day 2: 5   17-08     Day 3: 5   29-03
2.  Jason Christie         Park Hill, OK           14  50-02    0  $50,000.00
Day 1: 5   20-14     Day 2: 5   16-11     Day 3: 4   12-09
3.  Aaron Martens          Leeds, AL               15  46-05    0  $40,000.00
Day 1: 5   13-08     Day 2: 5   16-13     Day 3: 5   16-00
4.  Bill Lowen             Brookville, IN          15  45-11    0  $30,000.00
Day 1: 5   16-09     Day 2: 5   13-15     Day 3: 5   15-03
5.  Randy Howell           Guntersville, AL        15  45-10    0  $25,000.00
Day 1: 5   17-06     Day 2: 5   11-13     Day 3: 5   16-07
6.  Todd Faircloth         Jasper, TX              15  44-15    0  $22,000.00
Day 1: 5   14-15     Day 2: 5   16-15     Day 3: 5   13-01
7.  Dean Rojas             Lake Havasu City, AZ    13  42-11    0  $21,500.00
Day 1: 5   12-07     Day 2: 3   11-14     Day 3: 5   18-06
8.  Alton Jones            Lorena, TX              14  42-08    0  $21,000.00
Day 1: 5   17-13     Day 2: 4   11-12     Day 3: 5   12-15
9.  Keith Combs            Huntington, TX          13  40-13    0  $20,500.00
Day 1: 5   12-14     Day 2: 3   11-06     Day 3: 5   16-09
10. Greg Hackney           Gonzales, LA            15  40-09    0  $20,000.00
Day 1: 5   16-02     Day 2: 5   09-13     Day 3: 5   14-10
11. Bobby Lane Jr.         Lakeland, FL            12  37-15    0  $15,000.00
Day 1: 4   11-02     Day 2: 3   09-12     Day 3: 5   17-01
12. Brandon Palaniuk       Rathdrum, ID            12  37-15    0  $14,500.00
Day 1: 4   12-07     Day 2: 4   12-07     Day 3: 4   13-01
13. Brent Ehrler           Newport Beach, CA       11  37-03    0  $14,250.00
Day 1: 3   10-13     Day 2: 3   07-07     Day 3: 5   18-15
14. Micah Frazier          Newnan, GA              15  36-15    0  $14,000.00
Day 1: 5   13-02     Day 2: 5   13-10     Day 3: 5   10-03
15. James Watson           Nixa, MO                13  35-08    0  $13,750.00
Day 1: 5   13-10     Day 2: 5   14-07     Day 3: 3   07-07
16. Casey Ashley           Donalds, SC             12  33-04    0  $13,000.00
Day 1: 5   15-05     Day 2: 4   11-02     Day 3: 3   06-13
17. Boyd Duckett           Guntersville, AL        12  33-02    0  $12,900.00
Day 1: 3   08-08     Day 2: 4   10-02     Day 3: 5   14-08
18. David Walker           Sevierville, TN         12  33-00    0  $12,800.00
Day 1: 5   14-02     Day 2: 5   15-04     Day 3: 2   03-10
19. Skeet Reese            Auburn, CA              11  32-03    0  $12,700.00
Day 1: 3   12-12     Day 2: 4   10-09     Day 3: 4   08-14
20. John Crews Jr          Salem, VA               12  31-13    0  $12,600.00
Day 1: 3   07-02     Day 2: 5   16-10     Day 3: 4   08-01
21. Matt Herren            Ashville, AL            11  30-15    0  $12,400.00
Day 1: 5   16-04     Day 2: 2   05-12     Day 3: 4   08-15
22. Greg Vinson            Wetumpka, AL             9  30-03    0  $12,300.00
Day 1: 5   18-01     Day 2: 2   05-12     Day 3: 2   06-06
23. Marty Robinson         Lyman, SC               10  28-07    0  $14,700.00
Day 1: 4   14-12     Day 2: 2   04-10     Day 3: 4   09-01
24. Chris Lane             Guntersville, AL        12  27-05    0  $12,100.00
Day 1: 5   11-01     Day 2: 4   09-00     Day 3: 3   07-04
25. Ott DeFoe              Knoxville, TN           11  26-02    0  $12,000.00
Day 1: 5   11-01     Day 2: 4   08-07     Day 3: 2   06-10
BIG BASS OF TOURNAMENT
Marty Robinson           Lyman, SC           07-00      $2,500.00
———————————————————————–
Totals
Day   #Limits    #Fish      Weight
1        21       184       541-06
2        12       156       441-10
3        13       104       311-12
———————————-
46       444      1294-12