Melinda Mize made history on Saturday Oct. 24, 2020, when she won the co-angler BFL Regional title on Table Rock Lake. Mize is the first woman to win a regional on the boater or co-angler side. She is not, however, the first female to qualify for or compete in the All-American. That honor was given to Belinda Lewis of Lawrenceburg, Tenn., who qualified through the Bama Division, finishing in 43rd place and earning $1,500 in May 2009. Katie Jackson was the second woman to qualify for the All-American, with a sixth place finish in the 2012 Wild Card as a co-angler.
And Mize won't be the lone woman in next year's BFL All-American on Douglas Lake. Terri Davis of Chilhowe, Va. also qualified through the co-angler ranks at the BFL Regional on the James River Oct. 8, 2020. So two women anglers will compete for a chance at another historic moment in next year's BFL All-American.
Also worth noting, Mize was Co-Angler of the Year for the Arkie Division with top 20s in 4 of the 5 events and two of those were top 10s. She has already won a Lady Bass Anglers Association tournament in 2017, and she was the first woman to win a BASS Weekend Series event back in 2010.
Mize posted this after her win on her social media Saturday:
"Sometimes God says no or not right now. Y'all ... today God said yes for me in such an amazing way. I'm pulling home my new boat. And yep- I'm crying as I type it. What a year.
"I won the BFL Regional and I'm going to the All-American.
"God knows our needs every single day. I wasn't going to get to fish these events this year because of work, and then I was laid off. I'm telling you He guides us and removes things from our lives that don't need to be there and puts the things in it that do. I'm so thankful."
Full results can be found at FLWFishing.com.