EDWIN EVERS: The Makings of His Championship Run

In every championship season, there’s a defining moment. Be it a team sport or an individual sport, there’s always a snapshot moment where it becomes clear that a competitor might be destined for the season of a lifetime.

For 2019 MLF Bass Pro Tour Points Champion Edwin Evers, “The Moment” just happened to come very early in the season – early enough that nobody (not even Evers himself) understood the full significance of it when it happened.

Feb. 12, 2019 – We’re in the waning minutes of Stage Two on Lake Conroe, Texas. Evers is leading the event late in the third period, but he’s less than 4 pounds ahead of Jeff Sprague, who has doggedly chased him all day long. A fish swirls on and misses the jig that Evers has been flipping around the edges of a small slough. Evers puts down his jig rod and picks up a drop-shot that he has laying on his deck as a follow-up bait. Ten seconds later, BOOM: fish on. Evers identifies it as a difference-maker immediately: “That’s a BIG ‘un,” he says. “Gol-LEE. Stay on there, fish, stay on there, baby. That’s a game-winner right there. It’s over.”

It was indeed over: Evers’ final fish of the day proved to be a fat, beautiful 8-pound, 1-ounce prespawn female, which cemented the Oklahoma pro’s first-ever Bass Pro Tour championship trophy, exactly two weeks after he had left Kissimmee, Florida with a second-place finish in the new league’s inaugural event.

There’s “Competitive” and Then There’s E2
To those who talked with Evers immediately after the Stage One championship was decided – a championship that he lost to Jordan Lee by 11 pounds – it was clear that he was disappointed with a second-place finish. Evers shook hands and accepted congratulations from all who approached him, but in the moments when he was alone, as he went about the business of tidying up his boat and waiting for his time to go onstage for the Berkley Postgame Show, he quietly brooded.

Not as a sore loser, but as a professional athlete to whom first place is the only truly satisfying outcome to any competition. For all his fishing skills, it’s Evers’ drive to win that served as the foundation of his pursuit of the Points Championship, and that – according to his fellow competitors – makes him one of the all-time greats in the sport.