Cabela's King Kat




2019 Tournament Results

Location:Carlyle, IL - Carlyle Lake

Beamon and Staples win Cabela’s King Kat Tournament on Carlyle Lake
(Channel cats dominate but flathead wins Big Kat honors at Carlyle, IL. )

Louisville, KY – June 16, 2019 – Catfish anglers from several states traveled to Carlyle Lake for a King Kat Tournament Trail event presented by Bass Pro Shops Cabela’s. Thirty-six teams gathered at Carlyle, IL to test their catfishing skills against other anglers and Mother Nature.

Carlyle Lake is known for its big channel catfish. Anglers approached the event on June 15 with expectations of catching some hefty channels. Competitors were vying for $8,575 in cash and prizes, and an opportunity to qualify for the $120,000 Classic Championship to be held November 1 and 2, 2019, on the Tennessee River (Wheeler Lake) at Decatur, Alabama.

The Carlyle weather started off rough with rain and thunderstorms in the morning. The storms cleared and the skies turned sunny, but anglers were left to deal with 15-20 mph winds making boat control difficult.

Results for the Top Catfish Teams

The top spot at Carlyle went to Pat Beamon from New Harmony, IN and Don Staples from Calhoun, LA. They teamed up to bring 4 channels and 1 flathead to the scales. Their total weight of 52.44 pounds earned them the top spot and a check for $3,600. Their 25.10-pound flattie was Big Kat and added $700.

“We fished the South West end of Lake Carlyle,” reported Beamon. “Thunderstorms moved through in the morning and the wind was blowing about 15 to 20 MPH. The lightning forced us off the lake for about an hour. Conditions made it very difficult to manage the boat.”

The IN/LA team choose to anchor fish. They used big chunks of cut shad for bait to catch their 5 weigh-in fish.

“The bite was fairly off today compared to Friday,” Beamon said. “We only caught 6 fish in total. We targeted a little bit of structure in 20 feet of water.

The runner-up spot went to Craig Shirey from Baltimore, OH and James Wesney from Somerset, OH. They weighed 40.92 pounds and earned a check for $1,800.00. They were less than 1 pound ahead of the third-place team.

“This tournament was our first time on Carlyle,” offered Shirey. “We only had one day to figure it out. We spent most of the day Friday fighting the wind. Trolling was too hard and we couldn't drift slow enough either. So, I figured the fish would be close to their bedding grounds and that's what I looked for in around 8 to 10 feet of water.”

After setting up on a couple of spots they finally started starting getting bites and a couple of good fish. The result of their prefishing was a plan for Saturday to anchor up instead of fighting the wind.

On Saturday Shirey and Wesney found their fish a few miles up the lake from the weigh-in. They landed a total of 18 fish for the day. The team reported catching a few fish in the morning and few more fish late in the afternoon.

“We only found a few shad,” reported Shirey. “So, we started with small chunks and it paid off. We moved a couple of times during the day but stayed in the area.”

When asked about the 1pound difference between second and third place, Shirey explained that their bigger fish came 10 minutes before they had to quit fishing.

“The last fish added a pound and half to our weight,” concluded Shirey. “That put us in second place, so very relieving.”

Third place went to Danny Sapp and Jeff Sapp from Pekin, IL. Team Sapp brought 40.16 pounds to the scales. Their weight included a 16-pound flathead that was second Big Kat of the tournament. The Pekin team earned a check for $1,300.00.

Team Sapp found their fish on the lower end of the lake. They also fished on the anchor all day and reported a very slow day. They said that the wind made it pretty tough and they got very few bites. They were fishing rocks in about 5 feet of water.

Pete Moreland, Dan Dippel, and Mike Flaherty took the fourth-place spot. The three-man team from Ladd, IL and La Salle, IL had a total weight of 40.02 pounds to earn a check for $ 700.00.

The team found their fish on the upper end of the lake. They had fished the same area last year and won the Carlyle Lake tournament. They fished on the rope using shad for bait. They were catching their fish in 5 feet of water.

“The water level was a little higher this year,” said Flaherty. “It changed the fish patterns a little bit.”

Eric Sasse from Mulberry Grove, Il and Mark Thompson from Collinsville, IL rounded out the top five. They teamed up to bring 38.62 pounds to the scales and earn a check for $475.00.

Sasse and Thompson fished on the upper end of the lake as well. They drifted all day to land 8 fish for the day. Shad was their bait of choice on flats that were about 6-8 feet deep.

The Remaining Top Teams

6th Place – Dale Kerns and Greg Edwards – 37.98

7th Place – Mark Blauvelt and Ryan Lawrence – 37.58

8th Place – Thomas Welsh Jr and Tim Walsh – 36.90

9th Place – Tim Luttrell and Tom Luttrell – 36.36

10 Place – Chris Grose and Mike Grose – 34.40


Tournament director, Jeremy Coe made a special thank you to the City of Carlyle and Clinton County Tourism for having King Kat back and making the tournament possible. He also thanked the Corps of Engineers for doing an awesome job and taking care of all the participants.

"It was a great weekend on Carlyle Lake even though the wind played a huge factor! We had 3 nice flatheads and 15 channels that weighed over 10 pounds. Carlyle is an awesome channel cat lake with some good flats and we look forward to returning in 2020," said Coe.

National Sponsors

Bass Pro Shops Cabela’s King Kat Tournament Trail sponsors include: Bass Pro Shops Cabela’s, Excel Boats, Mercury Marine, Mustad Hooks, Humminbird, Minn Kota, B’n’M Poles, Gamma Line, Driftmaster Rod Holders, Ego Nets, Xtreme Bait Systems, Clear Boards, EFX Graphics, Catfish Now, Fin n’ Frames, and Crown Trophy


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