Super Powers

VALLEY, Ala. - Craig Powers of Rockwood, Tenn., has made 11 top-10 cuts in EverStart tournaments and has never won one. That all changed today as Powers brought in another five-bass limit weighing 12 pounds, 3 ounces to take the West Point Lake EverStart Series Southeast Division title with a two-day total of 24 pounds, 7 ounces. Perhaps the 12th time is the charm, but to hear Powers tell it, his first EverStart win almost never happened. Powers, who owns a Domino's Pizza, originally had planned to skip the West PointCraig Powers gets an emotional hug from his wife Kristi. event because of work. "School is out back home, and we are slammed with last-day-of-school pizza parties," Powers said. "I had to stay home and work." In fact, Powers was making pizza like a mad man last Sunday when his roommate and fellow pro Koby Kreiger called with a fishing report. "Koby called me like 20 times on Sunday saying, `Man, you've got to get down here, they're killing topwater,'" Powers recounted. "One time he called me after hooking a 6-pounder - I could hear it thrashing around beside the boat - and it killed me." Monday morning, Powers called FLW Outdoors and filled one of the last available slots in the tournament. "I left home at 3:30 in the morning on Tuesday," Powers said. "I was on the lake by 7:30 and knew exactly how I was going to fish by 9:30." With the exception of a few fish caught on wacky worms and Senkos, Powers caught most of his fish on an oversized Pop-R tied to 17-pound-test line. "I was running and gunning pockets all up and down the lake," he said. "I fished any piece of shallow-water cover that looked good - brush, stumps, bank grass - you name it. "The closest I ever came to winning one of these EverStarts was here at West Point in 1999 - I finished third, and missing that win really chapped me," he said. "And now, to win here when I wasn't even planning to fish - it's just weird how things work out." Pro Mike Keel of Auburn, Ala., finished in second place with a two-day total of 24 pounds, 2 ounces.Keel second Mike Keel of Auburn, Ala., came up 6 ounces shy of an EverStart win today, finishing second with a two-day total of 24 pounds, 2 ounces. Keel alternated between shallow- and deep-water patterns all week, but said the deeper bite was better today. He fished a 1/2-ounce Stanley Jig - black/blue - with a black trailer on 20-pound-test line around isolated rocks, stumps and brush piles in 8 to 12 feet of water. "I was hopping the jig up off the bottom around those isolated pieces of cover," Keel said. Gagliardi moves to third Anthony Gagliardi of Prosperity, S.C., finished third with a two-day total of 22 pounds, Pro Anthony Gagliardi of Prosperity, S.C., finished in third place with a two-day total of 22 pounds, 2 ounces.2 ounces. Gagliardi sight-fished early in the week and then discovered a "bream pattern." "Wherever I would find groups a bream, the bass would be nearby," he said. "Each time I found a group of bream, I would always hit that spot early the next morning and catch a couple of key bass." Gagliardi used wacky worms on 10-pound-test line and Brian's Bees "Prop Bee" topwaters that featured double props. Kennedy slips to fourth Pro Steve Kennedy of Auburn, Ala., nervously looks on as Craig Powers weighs in. Kennedy finished in fourth place with a two-day total of 21 pounds, 2 ounces.Day-three leader Steve Kennedy of Auburn, Ala., dealt with the frustration of watching his primary shallow-water pattern cave today under the pressure of wind and boat traffic. After incurring a 1-pound dead-fish penalty for two dead bass, his five-fish limit weighed in at 4 pounds, 14 ounces, giving him a two-day total of 21 pounds, 2 ounces to finish fourth. "I was fishing isolated cypress trees out on the main lake," he said. "The fish were only in about 18 inches of water, and the wind and wave action from all the Saturday boat traffic just destroyed it." Kennedy relied on a watermelon Kinami flash fished on 10-pound-test line most of the week. "I was fishing it on a spinning rod so I could skip it under the trees," he said. "If the bait landed up there with a loud splash, they wouldn't bite it - I had to slide it up under there quietly with a skip cast." Though Kennedy hated to see another EverStart win elude him, his fourth-place finish did net him the EverStart Series Angler of the Year honor for the Southeast Division. Johnson fifth Michael Johnson of Talking Rock, Ga., finished in fifth place with a two-day total of 17Pro Michael Johnson of Talking Rock, Ga., finished fifth with a two-day total of 17 pounds, 13 ounces. pounds, 13 ounces. Johnson fished a 1/4-ounce root beer-colored jig with a twin-tail trailer on shallow wood to catch his fish. "I can't even tell you how many trees, stumps and logs I've fished in the last four days," Johnson said. "I'd make about 10 pitches to each one, crank up and run to the next." Rest of the best Rounding out the top 10 pros in the EverStart Series Southeast event on West Point Lake: 6th: Jared Parmer of Roanoke, Ala., with a two-day total of 14-1 7th: Asa Godsey of Clewiston, Fla., with a two-day total of 13-9 8th: Tony Wood of Bowdon, Ga., with a two-day total of 9-13 9th: Rick Couch of Ocala, Fla., with a two-day total of 6-14 10: Flash Butts Roanoke Rapids, N.C., with a two-day total of 4-4

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/news/2015-03-30-top-10-patterns-from-lewis-smith

Top 10 Patterns from Lewis Smith

The Walmart FLW Tour event presented by Evinrude on Lewis Smith Lake featured a mishmash of springtime patterns that ranged from targeting bass feeding on blueback herring to catching spawning fish to dropping in on deep schools of spotted bass. Here’s a breakdown of the patterns of the top 10 pros. READ MORE »

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Lefebre Lands on Top

He left the dock this morning in 7th place, eight and a half pounds off the lead. And when he returned this afternoon, Dave Lefebre shocked the weigh-in crowd with a come-from-behind Walmart FLW Tour win that left his competitors shell-shocked. READ MORE »

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Lewis Smith Lake Day 4 Coverage

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/news/2015-03-28-birge-buzzes-ahead

Birge Buzzes Ahead

Today started off with a slightly miserable 31-degree air temperature, but it didn’t take long for the top 20 pros to really heat up on Lewis Smith Lake at the second stop of the 2015 Walmart FLW Tour presented by Evinrude. Reports poured in throughout the day of big bass – especially big largemouths – being caught off beds. It looked at first as if one of the “largemouth lookers” might piece together a big enough bag to snatch the lead away from Oklahoma rookie Zack Birge, who struggled early to make his shallow topwater pattern work. Unfortunately for the rest of the field, the young gun Birge has the coolness and patience of a veteran, and he stuck with his game plan of throwing a buzzbait and soft jerkbait rig until the sun had time to warm the shallows and spur the fish to become more active. Birge tallied 17 pounds, 11 ounces today, raising his three-day total to 54-8 and giving him a lead of 3-11 over Texas veteran Clark Wendlandt in second place. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-28-top-5-patterns-from-lewis-smith-day-3

Top 5 Patterns from Lewis Smith Day 3

After three days, it looks as if tournament leader Zack Birge has the quality largemouth bite in the bushes wired. But behind him on the leaderboard are nine pros doing everything from sight-fishing to catching schooling bass and everything in between. Even with all the patterns in play, few have fizzled. The sight-fishers have reported finding new bedders, the schoolers are still schooling and a couple of guys have even started tapping floating docks. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-28-millsaps-wins-on-lake-sinclair

Millsaps Wins on Lake Sinclair

MILLEDGEVILLE, Ga. – David Millsaps of Ranger, Georgia, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 20 pounds, 10 ounces Saturday to win the second Walmart Bass Fishing League Bulldog Division tournament of 2015 on Lake Sinclair. For his victory, Millsaps earned $6,009. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-28-walters-nets-third-victory-on-wylie

Walters Nets Third Victory on Wylie

LAKE WYLIE, N.C. – Todd Walters of Kernersville, North Carolina, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 17 pounds, 2 ounces Saturday to win the second Walmart Bass Fishing League North Carolina Division tournament of 2015 on Lake Wylie. For his victory, Walters earned $4,350. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-28-lewis-smith-lake-day-3-coverage

Lewis Smith Lake Day 3 Coverage

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/news/2015-03-28-mosley-on-top-at-arkansas-river

Mosley on Top at Arkansas River

MUSKOGEE, Okla. – Brandon Mosley of Choctaw, Oklahoma, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 19 pounds, 13 ounces Saturday to win the second Walmart Bass Fishing League Okie Division tournament of 2015 the Arkansas River. For his victory, Mosley earned $5,349. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-27-topwater-takes-birge-to-the-top

Topwater Takes Birge to the Top

On a day when chilly, windy post-front conditions challenged many Walmart FLW Tour anglers who were relying on sight-fishing for spawning bass, Zack Birge bucked the trend and pulled out a pair of topwaters to haul in 17 pounds, 14 ounces. Birge jumped from third place past day-one leader Drew Benton to take over the top spot on Lewis Smith Lake in the event, which is presented by Evinrude. Birge’s two-day total of 36-13 has him positioned 1 pound ahead of Benton. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-27-top-5-patterns-from-lewis-smith-day-2

Top 5 Patterns from Lewis Smith Day 2

While air and water temperatures plummeted on day two of the Walmart FLW Tour event on Lewis Smith Lake presented by Evinrude, the big surprise came in the stability of the fishing patterns amidst such change. Zack Birge found plenty of production on his primary pattern to send him to the top of the leaderboard, and those under him held true to their patterns as well to secure a ticket to day three’s top 20. Among the biggest surprises was the number of pros who were still able to pluck fish off beds. Most pros that were sight-fishing say the bass are committed to beds and that the cold snap will not run them off at this point in time. Despite the cold, some even found new fish on beds that were not there yesterday. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-27-lewis-smith-lake-day-2-coverage

Lewis Smith Lake Day 2 Coverage

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/news/2015-03-26-benton-blasts-20-12-on-lewis-smith

Benton Blasts 20-12 on Lewis Smith

Panama City, Fla., pro Drew Benton jumped into the early lead at the Walmart FLW Tour event on Lewis Smith Lake presented by Evinrude with a five-bass limit weighing 20 pounds, 12 ounces. Benton caught a mix of largemouths and spotted bass, and revealed that both black bass species are spawning. He leads a tight top 20 that includes 18 pros that caught more than 15 pounds each. The first day was an absolute fish-fest. Of the 154 pros fishing this tournament, 138 weighed limits. Brad Roberts of Faubush, Ky., has a 2-ounce lead in the co-angler division with a 13-pound, 4-ounce limit. Tomorrow he’ll try to defend his lead on the final day of co-angler competition. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-26-top-5-patterns-from-lewis-smith-day-1

Top 5 Patterns from Lewis Smith Day 1

While Drew Benton was busy bugging bedding fish for his day-one tournament lead, several others behind him were scoring big with other fishing options on Lewis Smith Lake. Sight-fishing also played a role in the top limits produce by Tracy Adams, Scott Martin and Ish Monroe, but Clayton Batts and Zack Birge both brought in big bags with other patterns. Click here to read about Benton’s day-one performance at the second Walmart FLW Tour event of 2015, which is presented by Evinrude. Here’s how the rest of the top five got it done. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-26-lewis-smith-lake-day-1-coverage

Lewis Smith Lake Day 1 Coverage

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/news/2015-03-22-arkansas-anglers-win-college-open

Arkansas Anglers Win College Open

Consistency was the key for the University of Arkansas-Fayetteville here in the FLW College Fishing Kentucky Lake Open as Zachary Pickle and Drew Porto won the event with a two-day total of 43 pounds, 12 ounces. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-21-kendrick-king-on-guntersville

Kendrick King On Guntersville

Kendrick, who is fishing the Rayovac FLW Series in hopes of qualifying for the FLW Tour, caught more than 25 pounds each day of the event and finihsid in fine fasion when it counted. Kendick was catching nearly all of his bass around big schools of bait with a Houdini pearl-colored Scottsboro Tackle swimbait from 15- to 25-feet of water. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-21-epting-s-30-pounds-tops-on-santee-cooper

Epting's 30 Pounds Tops on Santee Cooper

SUMMERTON, S.C. – Chris Epting of Chapin, South Carolina, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 30 pounds, 2 ounces Saturday to win the second Walmart Bass Fishing League South Carolina Division tournament of 2015 on Santee Cooper. For his victory, Epting earned $3,679. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-21-wood-rock-key-for-middleton-s-victory

Wood, Rock Key for Middleton's Victory

HUDDLESTON, Va. – Dennis Middleton of Madison Heights, Virginia, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 19 pounds, 11 ounces Saturday to win the first Walmart Bass Fishing League Shenandoah Division tournament of 2015 on Smith Mountain Lake. For his victory, Middleton earned $7,199. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-21-johnson-wins-on-dale-hollow

Johnson Wins on Dale Hollow

BYRDSTOWN, Tenn. – Robby Johnson of Byrdstown, Tennessee, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 22 pounds, 7 ounces Saturday to win the first Walmart Bass Fishing League Mountain Division tournament of 2015 on Dale Hollow Lake. For his victory, Johnson earned $5,689. READ MORE »