Photo by Brian Lindberg Never has there been a better ending to a season that began with devastation.
At this point, we all know Anthony Gagliardi's story. He was disqualified from the season opener on Lake Okeechobee. His odds of making the Forrest Wood Cup were slim to none. But Gagliardi overcame those odds. At a near record-setting pace, Gagliardi clawed back for five tournaments, sneaking into the Cup field by one place in the Angler of the Year standings.
It was a storybook tale, and tonight, Gagliardi wrote the final chapter.
In front of a packed hometown crowd at Colonial Life Arena in Columbia, S.C., Gagliardi stunned the bass-fishing world with a final-day limit of 13 pounds, 14 ounces that bumped his tournament total to 51 pounds, 2 ounces - just 1 ounce more than Straight Talk pro Scott Canterbury's final weight. For his victory, Gagliardi was handed a $500,000 check from Forrest L. Wood.
From out to in by one place; from the middle of the pack to champion by 1 ounce - Anthony Gagliardi is the 2014 Forrest Wood Cup champion.
COLUMBIA, S.C. – Chevy pro Anthony Gagliardi of Prosperity, S.C., crossed the stage with a five-bass limit weighing 13 pounds, 14 ounces Sunday to claim the title of Forrest Wood Cup Champion at the Forrest Wood Cup at Lake Murray presented by Walmart. Gagliardi, with a four-day total of 19 bass for 51-2, won by a narrow 1-ounce margin over Straight Talk Wireless pro Scott Canterbury of Springville, Ala., and won the $500,000 prize in professional bass fishing’s world championship that featured 45 of the best professional anglers from across the country casting for the sport’s top cash award of $500,000.
“This is unbelievable,” said Gagliardi, who overcame an early-season disqualification at the first FLW Tour event of the year on Lake Okeechobee and managed to qualify to compete in the Forrest Wood Cup in just five events. “To win the Forrest Wood Cup, no matter where it is, is the most prestigious event that I could win in our sport. But to do it here, in front of all of these people who were rooting for me, it really just makes it so much more special. Read More - Results - Video of Win