Last Minute Catch Earns $80,000 for Tyler Stewart

Last Minute Catch Earns $80,000 for Tyler Stewart

LAGRANGE, Ga. – The final day of the Major League Fishing (MLF) Tackle Warehouse Invitational Stop 2 Presented by Suzuki on West Point Lake was as dramatic as anticipated. With the clock ticking down, none of the leaders had pulled clearly ahead or had spectacular days, until Tyler Stewart of Dubach, Louisiana, iced it with a last-minute kicker fish.

“Honestly, I was hoping to catch a 2½-pound spotted bass, to get a few more pounds, because I knew it was going to be so close,” Stewart said of his final fish. “There was a dock that I caught one 2-pounder on in practice, in front of the ramp. I rolled up to that dock with 10 minutes left, slung a ChatterBait under it and caught a 3½-pounder and culled out a 1-pounder. When it’s meant to be, it’s gonna happen.”

That fish bumped Stewart up to 14 pounds, 4 ounces on the day, enough to clear Todd Walters of Kernersville, North Carolina, by 7 ounces and win his first Tackle Warehouse Invitationals event with a three-day total of 45-3. For the win, Stewart takes home the top prize of $80,000 and a coveted spot in REDCREST 2025.

Having fished as a pro on the FLW Tour and its various iterations since 2018, Stewart has fished the Forrest Wood Cup and the Tackle Warehouse TITLE Championship and been in the hunt to win before. A winner in college in 2016, Stewart fished at the University of Louisiana-Monroe, and has since fished his way around the country.

This week, he took a couple of clues from practice, added some veteran savvy, and put together a win.

“The first day of practice, I caught an 8-pounder, or about that, on the docks I fished the first day,” he said. “It ate that ChatterBait, and that was the only big bite I had. I said ‘Well, there’s big ones around here, I might as well start here.’ I went down that stretch first thing on Day 1 and caught 15 pounds.”

From there, Stewart was able to let his skills take it the rest of the way.

“When I got bit doing that in practice, I was excited, because I’ve done well in tournaments where that (dock bite) was going on,” he said. “Clarks Hill last year, I had a bad second day, but the first day I did the exact same thing on docks and caught 16 or 17 pounds real quick. I love doing it, I do it a lot back home – the Ouachita River has a bunch of marinas and I catch them like that all the time on it.

“Most of those docks were in 15 or 20 feet. The fish were definitely sitting under the floats, like a foot under the water. I was slow rolling it through there, trying to get one to react.”

Fishing some laydowns as well, and catching a few spotted bass off rock places, the bread and butter for Stewart was a ChatterBait and docks, either along shorelines or in marinas. His bait of choice was a 1/2-ounce Z-Man Evergreen ChatterBait JackHammer with a shad trailer, which he threw on a 7-foot, 5-inch, medium heavy Favorite Hex, with 17-pound P-Line Tactical .

On the final day, Stewart caught two kicker largemouth, one early, one late, and that was the difference maker. Combined with a stellar Day 1, which saw him catch the biggest bag of the event, it was just enough to get the job done.

“I haven’t won since college, it’s so hard to do it,” Stewart said. “Leading a day is one thing, but finishing it out, I’ll just be honest, I’m not really a closer. I usually catch them really good, and then fall off. This feels really good.”

It also sets him up for a run at Bass Pro Tour qualification – MLF’s most prestigious circuit. After finishing 66th at Sam Rayburn to start the year, he’s now 23rd in the points.

“I’m excited about it,” he said. “Last year, I had a couple unfortunate things happen that might have cost me the Bass Pro Tour qualification. But, I’m going to try to be more responsible this year, make sure to charge my batteries before the second day, and stuff like that. The schedule looks like a lot of fun, I’ve been doing it eight years now, and I’ve been to all these places other than where we’re at right now.”

The top 30 pros at the Tackle Warehouse Invitational Stop 2 Presented by Suzuki at West Point Lake finished:

1st: Tyler Stewart, Dubach, La., 15 bass, 45-3, $80,000
2nd: Todd Walters, Kernersville, N.C., 15 bass, 44-12, $50,000
3rd: Derik Hudson, Concord, Va., 15 bass, 43-8, $20,300
4th: Colby Miller, Elmer, La., 15 bass, 41-14, $18,000
5th: Drew Gill, Mount Carmel, Ill., 15 bass, 41-6, $17,000
6th: Cole Breeden, Lebanon, Mo., 15 bass, 41-1, $16,000
7th: Jake Lawrence, Buchanan, Tenn., 15 bass, 40-5, $15,000
8th: Ethan Greene, Eufaula, Ala., 15 bass, 40-2, $14,000
9th: Troy Stokes, Trenton, Mich., 15 bass, 39-13, $13,000
10th: Ken Thompson, Roaring Springs, Penn., 15 bass, 39-12, $12,000
11th: Brody Campbell, Oxford, Ohio, 15 bass, 39-12, $10,000
12th: Alec Morrison, Peru, N.Y., 15 bass, 39-10, $10,000
13th: Charlie Williams, LaGrange, Ga., 15 bass, 38-13, $10,000
14th: Marshall Hughes, Hemphill, Texas, 15 bass, 38-8, $10,000
15th: Taylor Parker, Lake View, Ala., 15 bass, 37-13, $10,000
16th: Jack Daniel Williams, Kingsport, Tenn., 15 bass, 37-13, $10,000
17th: Alex Davis, Albertville, Ala., 15 bass, 37-12, $10,000
18th: Keith Poche, Pike Road, Ala., 15 bass, 37-11, $10,000
19th: Brock Reinkemeyer, Warsaw, Mo., 15 bass, 36-14, $10,000
20th: Cameron Mattison, Benton, La., 15 bass, 36-12, $10,000
21st: Bobby Padgett, LaGrange, Ga., 15 bass, 36-3, $10,000
22nd: Michael Harlin, Sunrise Beach, Mo., 15 bass, 36-2, $10,000
23rd: Keith Carson, DeBary, Fla., 15 bass, 35-15, $10,000
24th: Brett Carnright, Plattsburgh, N.Y., 15 bass, 35-15, $10,000
25th: Spike Stoker, Cisco, Texas, 15 bass, 35-13, $10,000
26th: Brian Gay, LaGrange, Ga., 15 bass, 35-8, $10,000
27th: Chris Blair, Newnan, Ga., 15 bass, 35-7, $10,000
28th: Kyle Cortiana, Broken Arrow, Okla., 15 bass, 35-3, $10,000
29th: Brad Jelinek, Lincoln, Mo., 15 bass, 34-6, $10,000
30th: Kelly Jordon, Flint, Texas, 11 bass, 28-4, $10,000

Complete results for the entire field can be found at