AOY: Classic qualifying berths

MUSKOGEE, Okla. — After an eight-event regular season stretching from California to Georgia, a bevy of Bassmaster Elite Series anglers were able to cash in on the fruits of their labor Sunday in the form of Bassmaster Classic berths. The final Elite event of the regular season, the AutoZone Sooner Run on Fort Gibson Lake, is in the books and with that, 37 anglers grabbed a coveted qualifying spot into the 2011 Bassmaster Classic.

 While BASS qualifies 36 anglers for the Classic based on their ranking in the Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year race, because 2010 Classic champion Kevin Vandam of Kalamazoo, Mich., automatically qualifies and was sixth in the AOY points, the 37th angler, Paul Elias of Laurel, Miss., also gets in.

 The 2010 Bassmaster Classic is set for Feb. 18-20 on the Louisiana Delta out of New Orleans.

 While Elias finished strong — he scored a 16th place finish at the Sooner Run — a trio of BASS veterans were able to land their Classic berths despite missing the top 47 cut at the Oklahoma Elite event. Still, Kevin Wirth of Crestwood, Ky., (34th); Kelly Jordon of Mineola, Texas (35th) and Terry Scroggins (36th) of San Mateo, Florida, did just enough during the course of the season to sneak in. Each angler holds a Classic qualifying streak of at least five consecutive.

 "I felt sick because I thought I cost myself a Classic berth here," said Wirth, who will fish in his 10th consecutive Classic in 2011. "That's what we fish for. To get into that Classic and have a shot at the top prize. Plus, the exposure opportunities are incredible."

 Joining the 37 Elite qualifiers in the 50-angler Classic field will be six BASS Federation Nation anglers who will qualify via the Federation Nation National Championship (Oct. 27-29; Red River; Shreveport, La.); two each from the Bassmaster Southern, Central and Northern Opens; and the winner of the Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Weekend Series Operated by American Bass Anglers Championship. The field will be vying for a $500,000 top prize.

 In the case of anglers who qualify through two avenues, BASS will work down through the Elite Series' AOY standings. That means all is not lost for the 38th placed competitor. In fact, in 2009, BASS worked down to the 39th spot in the AOY rankings due to anglers who double qualified via both the Opens and Elite Series.

 Jared Lintner of Arroyo Grande, Calif., would be the first angler to qualify in the case of a double qualifier. The final list of the AOY regular-season standings is the following:

 2010 Muskogee, OK: Points Ending 06-20-2010, Day 4

 

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Place Name St Pts

 

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1 Skeet Reese Calif. 2116

 

2 Edwin Evers Okla. 2010

 

3 Cliff Pace Miss. 1868

 

4 Derek Remitz Ala. 1854

 

5 Terry Butcher Okla. 1841

 

6 Kevin VanDam Mich. 1825

 

7 Tommy Biffle Okla. 1801

 

8 John Crews Va. 1792

 

9 Gary Klein Texas 1771

 

10 Greg Hackney La. 1767

 

11 Russ Lane Ala. 1766

 

11 Aaron Martens Ala. 1766

 

13 Brian Snowden Mo. 1732

 

14 Mark Davis Ark. 1726

 

15 Mike McClelland Ark. 1723

 

16 Todd Faircloth Texas 1712

 

17 Scott Rook Ark. 1705

 

18 Morizo Shimizu Japan 1690

 

19 Matt Herren Ala. 1686

 

20 Bill Lowen Ohio 1669

 

21 Stephen Browning Ark. 1663

 

22 Michael Iaconelli N.J. 1644

 

23 Dave Wolak N.C. 1643

 

24 Shaw Grigsby Fla. 1622

 

25 Boyd Duckett Ala. 1618

 

26 Bobby Lane Fla. 1608

 

26 Jeff Kriet Okla. 1608

 

28 Gerald Swindle Ala. 1601

 

29 Jason Williamson S.C. 1597

 

30 Greg Vinson Ala. 1578

 

31 Steve Kennedy Ala. 1573

 

32 Dean Rojas Ariz. 1572

 

33 Brent Chapman Kan. 1547

 

34 Kevin Wirth Ky. 1546

 

35 Kelly Jordon Texas 1531

 

36 Terry Scroggins Fla. 1530

 

37 Paul Elias Miss. 1525

 

38 Jared Lintner Calif. 1513

 

39 Mark Tucker Mo. 1502

 

40 Bradley Roy Ky. 1475

 

40 Davy Hite S.C. 1475

 

40 Rick Morris Va. 1475

 

43 Marty Robinson S.C. 1471

 

44 Pat Golden N.C. 1453

 

45 Clark Reehm Ark. 1450

 

46 Casey Ashley S.C. 1439

 

47 Dustin Wilks N.C. 1433

 

48 Denny Brauer Mo. 1427

 

49 James Niggemeyer Texas 1425

 

50 Mark Menendez Ky. 1423

 

51 Timmy Horton Ala. 1422

 

52 Cliff Crochet La. 1414

 

53 Jason Quinn S.C. 1412

 

54 Takahiro Omori Texas 1406

 

55 Matt Reed Texas 1405

 

56 Alton Jones Texas 1397

 

57 Randy Howell Ala. 1382

 

58 Kenyon Hill Okla. 1378

 

59 Billy McCaghren Ark. 1374

 

60 Ish Monroe Calif. 1368

 

61 Marty Stone N.C. 1364

 

62 Pete Ponds Miss. 1360

 

63 Kevin Short Ark. 1354

 

64 Kotaro Kiriyama Ala. 1352

 

65 Bradley Hallman Okla. 1350

 

65 Peter Thliveros Fla. 1350

 

67 Guy Eaker N.C. 1339

 

68 J Todd Tucker Ga. 1334

 

69 Zell Rowland Texas 1327

 

70 Rick Clunn Mo. 1317

 

71 Chris Lane Ala. 1288

 

72 Jami Fralick S.D. 1286

 

73 Keith Poche Ala. 1276

 

74 Mark Tyler Okla. 1274

 

75 Grant Goldbeck Md. 1266

 

76 Chad Griffin Texas 1260

 

77 Byron Velvick Texas 1247

 

78 Jeff Connella La. 1246

 

79 Bernie Schultz Fla. 1228

 

80 Britt Myers S.C. 1226

 

81 Matt Greenblatt Fla. 1225

 

82 Fred Roumbanis Okla. 1213

 

83 Charlie Hartley Ohio 1210

 

84 John Murray Ariz. 1186

 

85 Wade Grooms S.C. 1156

 

86 Yusuke Miyazaki Texas 1144

 

87 Vince Fulks Okla. 1132

 

88 Dennis Tietje La. 1096

 

89 Byron Haseotes Mass. 1010

 

90 Jeremy Starks W.Va. 990

 

91 David Smith Okla. 988

 

92 Mark Burgess Mass. 970

 

93 Scott Ashmore Okla. 906