Belmont Bassmaster angler wins $101,000

Bryan New of Belmont, N.C. won $101,000 in his first Bassmaster Elite Series event this past weekend. (Photo by Shane Durrance, courtesy of B.A.S.S.)

Bryan New won the St. Johns River Bassmaster Elite Series event

Bryan New of Belmont, N.C. fished in his first Bassmaster Elite Series event this past weekend. He won the tournament, earning a paycheck of $101,000. His four-day total weight at the St. Johns River event was 79 pounds, 7 ounces.

New was one of ten anglers fishing on Championship Sunday, having made it through each day’s cut. He started the final day in sixth place, and was 5 pounds, 7 ounces behind Patrick Walters of Summerville, S.C., who led the field at the end of Day 3.

New cranked things up on the last day, bagging the tournament’s second-heaviest sack of keepers with his five-fish limit that tipped the scales at 26 pounds, 4 ounces. His big bag included Day 4’s Big Bass of the day, a 5 pound, 14 ounce fish that netted him a $1000 bonus.

Three Carolina anglers finished in the Top 10 of the tournament

New, who qualified for this year’s Elite Series by winning the 2020 Falcon Rods Bassmaster Opens Angler of the Year award, caught most of his fish around lily pads. He boated a handful of other fish around shell bars. He fished a Berkley Warpig trap-style lure at the shell bars. In the lilies, he used 5-inch long Zoom Zlinky worms.

After improving his standings on each day, New won the tournament convincingly. He beat second-place finisher Greg Hackney of Gonzales, La. by 9 pounds.

His goals for his rookie season include winning Angler of the Year and winning the Bassmaster Classic. These may seem like lofty goals for a rookie, but this win proves it’s all possible.

“I have a pretty good start,” New said of his first Elite Series tournament.

Walters took fourth place, weighing in a total weight of 68 pounds, 13 ounces. And another Carolina angler, Hank Cherry, took seventh place with a total weight of 66 pounds, 2 ounces.

For the full story of the event, click here.

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Brian Cope
About Brian Cope 1775 Articles
Brian Cope is the editor of He has won numerous awards for his writing, photography, and videography. He is a retired Air Force combat communications technician, and has a B.A. in English Literature from the University of South Carolina. You can reach him at

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