Tied twice at 50

Ties in the competitive-fishing world don’t happen very often, but when they do, contingency (tiebreaker) rulings must be in place. Typically, these decisions are made through season- or tournament-running statistics, such as largest fish, largest single-day weight, most fish or weight over the season, etc. There are also several backup criteria that can be utilized if ties continue through the contingencies.

There were two really interesting ties last week at the Plano Bassmaster Elite at Lake St. Clair. Both had big implications for the anglers involved. And in both cases, the published tiebreakers in the 2015 Bassmaster Elite Series rules broke the ties.

Three-way tie at 50th place

To qualify for the 2015 Toyota Bassmaster Angler of the Year championship, which is taking place at Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin, Sept. 17-20, the anglers must earn enough points to remain in 50th place in the points race, or better, to participate.

After the final day of competition at Lake St. Clair, Andy Montgomery, Ish Monroe and Keith Poche shared a three-way tie for 50th place in AOY points. The first tiebreaker separates the anglers by combined weight across all full-field days throughout the season.

In other words: Elite Series tournaments are four days long. Every angler competes on Day 1 and Day 2 of each event hoping to qualify for the Top 50 cut on Day 3. From there, the field gets trimmed down to the Top 12 for Championship Sunday.

After the calculations were completed (during full-field days only), Poche had season total of 201 pounds, 10 ounces, Montgomery had 214 pounds, 7 ounces and Monroe came in on top with 218 pounds, 1 ounce, thus earning the last spot at the AOY Championship.

Tied, three times

Mike Iaconelli and Matt Reed tied for 50th place at the end of Day 2 of the Plano Bassmaster Elite on Lake St. Clair. Only the Top 50 advance to the semi-final round of each Elite Series event, so to determine who would advance, the Tournament staff had to resort to the formal rulebook in order to break the tie.

Tiebreaker Rule No. 1

Largest one-day catch breaks the tie.

Both anglers had the same weight on their biggest bag of bass. Move to tiebreaker number 2.

Tiebreaker Rule No. 2

Second largest one-day catch breaks the tie.

Both Iaconelli and Reed weighed the same amount with their second largest bag. So we move to the next tiebreaker.

Tiebreaker Rule No. 3

Largest number of fish breaks the tie.

Both anglers weighed 10 fish across the first two days of competition.

I know, this is giving me a headache, too. Bear with me.

Tiebreaker Rule No. 4

Largest number of live fish weighed.

Unfortunately, Iaconelli had a fish die on him and he kept his honor intact by weighing the fish—as outlined in the official rules. So utilizing this tiebreaker, Matt Reed made the cut to fish Day 3 on Lake St. Clair.

Interestingly, Iaconelli is currently holding down 45th place in the AOY standings. He’s already qualified for the 2015 AOY Championship, but he is going to have to do well at Sturgeon Bay in order to advance in the points standings to qualify for the 2016 GEICO Bassmaster Classic, presented by GoPro on Oklahoma’s Grand Lake.

I love statistics!