UPCOMING EVENT: Rayovac FLW Series - 2015 - Lake Erie

Kennedy takes charge

FLORENCE, Ala. - After dominating the EverStart Series Southeast Division points race this season, pro Steve Kennedy of Auburn, Ala., continued his leading ways today by taking an early lead in the EverStart Series Championship on Pickwick Lake with four bass weighing 16 pounds, 7 ounces. "I started the day on Wilson (Lake), fishing deep," Kennedy said. "But it wasn't working out like I wanted, so I locked back into Pickwick at about 11:30, and I started fishing shallow." Kennedy didn't have a keeper when he locked down, but after changing his game plan, things began to click. "It was weird," he said. "I had a lot more bites when the current was on, but for some reason, I couldn't get a hook in them. I missed the first five bites I had down here (Pickwick). When the current shut off this afternoon, I finally started catching them, but the number of bites fell off." Kennedy says he plans to permanently abandon his deep fish on Wilson and stay in Pickwick all day tomorrow. Lefebre second Dave Lefebre of Union City, Pa., is in second place with four bass weighing 15Pro Dave Lefebre brings a quality bass aboard on day one of the 2006 EverStart Series Championship. pounds, 6 ounces. Lefebre spent most of his practice time on Wilson and had planned to fish there until he discovered something special on Pickwick. "Yesterday, the FOX television crew wanted to film a little deal with me," Lefebre recounted. "After filming the bit, I went back out on the water just to see if I could find something close by to fish after I locked back down each day. Well, I got to fooling around, and I think I may have stumbled across the mother lode." Due to the way Lefebre is fishing, he's having trouble keeping the fish on the hook. "I had several other big ones on today, which would have pushed my stringer over 20 pounds," he said. "I'm fishing really heavy jigs on light line in current. There's so much bow in the line, it's hard to get a hook in the fish, and they're jumping off." Green third Jerry Green put himself in contention with an opening-day catch weighing 12-2.Jerry Green of Justiceburg, Texas, drove his boat 180 miles today, but his four bass weighing 12 pounds, 2 ounces made the long ride well worth it, as he grabbed third place. "I'm going all the way down to Bay Springs Lake in Mississippi," Green said. "It's a whole different lake down there - deep, clear and full of big spotted bass. I like fishing that way, so I decided to commit to that area. I only have about four hours of fishing time, but I feel more confident down there." Unlike the other leaders who are fishing current-oriented areas, Green says current isn't a factor for him. "I'm fishing pretty deep," he added. "At times, I'm fishing 15 to 20 feet deep." Newton fourth Jonathan Newton of nearby Rogersville, Ala., is no stranger to winning EverStartAs expected, local pro Jonathan Newton landed in the top five with one of only nine limits on the pro side. tournaments on Pickwick Lake. He won a Central Division tourney here in March 2003, and he has put himself in position to do it again this week with five bass weighing 12 pounds, 1 ounce for fourth place. After losing an hour to a fog delay this morning, Newton gambled on a long run-and-lock game plan that took him to Wheeler Lake - and it paid off. "I only had about three hours to fish," Newton said. "I'm flipping a couple of small stretches of bank up there, and I don't have a lot of time to move around." The next big gamble Newton is contemplating is staying on Pickwick tomorrow with hopes of saving his best water on Wheeler for the finals. "If I could sneak into the finals on Pickwick tomorrow, I could let the water on Wheeler rest for a day," he said. "But the last time I tried that strategy in the FLW here, it came back and bit me." Webber fifth Michigan pro Mike Webber ended day one in the fifth spot with a limit weighing 12 pounds.Mike Webber of Holly, Mich., sits in the fifth position after day one with five bass weighing 12 pounds even. While other anglers are making long runs to their areas, Webber is making a 40-minute idle to his best spot. "I tried to run in there in practice, and I hit a stump," Webber said. "I committed to idling the whole way in, and it takes at least 40 minutes to get to the best stuff. "I really have no idea what kind of potential the place has," he continued. "My partner (who is leading the Co-angler Division) and I got in there and caught them quick and left. I don't know if there are a hundred fish in there or one, but I'm going to find out tomorrow. Rest of the best Rounding out the top 10 pros in the EverStart Championship on Pickwick Lake: 6th: Lloyd Pickett Jr. of Bartlett, Tenn., four bass, 10-14 7th: Art Garza of Buna, Texas, five bass, 10-11 8th: Kota Kiriyama of Moody, Ala., five bass, 10-10 9th: Matt Herren of Trussville, Ala., three bass, 10-3 10th: Scott Nielsen of Salt Lake City, five bass, 9-7 Guin leads co-anglers Mark Guin grabbed the day-one co-angler lead with a three-bass catch that weighed 7-13.Mark Guin of Crossett, Ark., leads the Co-angler Division with three bass for 7 pounds, 13 ounces. Guin fished with fifth-place pro Mike Webber and had the kind of day co-anglers dream about. "We just had a great day," Guin said. "We got back into this place, he caught a limit and I caught three good fish on crankbaits and soft plastics." Rick Turner of Tyler, Texas, turned in the Co-angler Division big bass of the day - 4 pounds, 15 ounces - which gave him a two-fish total of 7 pounds, 11 ounces for second place. Co-anglers George Miller of Springfield, Pa., and Gene Purdy of Bentonville, Ark., are tied for third at 6 pounds, 11 ounces. Arch Cornett of Huntsville, Ala., holds down the fifth position in the Co-angler Division with 6 pounds, 8 ounces. Rest of the best Rounding out the top 10 co-anglers in the EverStart Championship on Pickwick Lake: 6th: Christopher Hall of Clarks Summit, Pa., two bass, 5-15 7th: James Chapman of Cedartown, Ga., two bass, 5-9 8th: Brian Mlekush of Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., two bass, 5-8 9th: Paul Bailey of Agoura Hills, Calif., three bass, 5-5 10th: Mike Drain of Purcell, Okla., two bass, 4-15 Day-two competition resumes Thursday at 7 a.m. at McFarland Park in Florence, Alabama.

Tags: headline-story  rob-newell 

/news/2015-08-29-matual-masters-erie

Matual Masters Erie

David Matual of Chicago, Ill., leaned on his spot hard and sacked up the biggest bag of day three weighing 22 pounds, 6 ounces. For his final-day rally he claimed the Rayovac FLW Series Northern Division victory on Lake Erie with a three-day total of 65 pounds, fending off Jared Rhode by a mere 7 ounces. Drop-shotting over shallow reefs delivered all of Matual’s fish and earned him a check worth more than $31,000. READ MORE »

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Lake Erie Day 3 Midday Update

Lake Erie put on a different face for day three of the final Rayovac FLW Series Northern Division event. After a rough day one, yesterday’s calm and mostly sunny conditions offered comfortable running and fishing conditions. Today was still a far cry from the brutal waves of day one - and prior practice days - but windier conditions and overcast skies seemed to present a more challenging scenario. READ MORE »

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Top 5 Patterns From Lake Erie Day 2

Pennsylvania pro Dave Lefebre and Ohio pro Jared Rhode tied for the day-two lead in Rayovac FLW Series Northern Division action on Lake Erie with 43 pounds, 9 ounces. Both pros caught their fish on drop-shots. Here are the details of the rest of the top five. READ MORE »

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Lefebre, Rhode Tied at the Top

Notching his second day of 20-plus pounds, FLW Tour pro Dave Lefebre tallied 43 pounds, 9 ounces and tied day-one leader Jared Rhode for the day-two top spot at the Rayovac FLW Series Northern Division event on Lake Erie. Lefebre caught his 22-3 limit on Rapala DT-10 crankbaits, while Rhodes tempted his 19-15 catch with drop-shots. READ MORE »

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Lake Erie Day 2 Midday Update

With winds shifting from yesterday’s northerly blow to a warmer southerly direction, day two of the Rayovac FLW Series Northern Division event on Lake Erie brought calmer conditions with greater ability to methodically work key spots. Offshore, waves ran 1 to 2 feet, with leeward areas behind the Lake Erie Islands nearly flat. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-27-rhode-cracks-23-10-for-erie-lead

Rhode Cracks 23-10 for Erie Lead

Jared Rhode played his cards and the gamble paid off better than expected, as the pro from Port Clinton, Ohio, took the day-one lead at the Rayovac FLW Series Northern Division event on Lake Erie with a limit catch weighing 23 pounds, 10 ounces. READ MORE »

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Top 5 Patterns from Lake Erie Day 1

Taking off this morning, the FLW Tour pro from Erie, Pa., knew the day’s north wind would keep him from making a long run to a big-fish spot close to his home. However, keeping it local and fishing a little past Pelee Island to the west delivered a solid second-place catch. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-27-lake-erie-day-1-midday-report

Lake Erie Day 1 Midday Report

Winds have subsided considerably since practice, but Lake Erie’s still showing her temperamental side to Rayovac FLW Series Northern Division anglers fishing the last divisional event out of Sandusky, Ohio. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-25-top-10-patterns-from-the-forrest-wood-cup

Top 10 Patterns from the Forrest Wood Cup

If you don’t believe that summertime bass fishing in the dog days of August is all over the map, just take a look at the top 10 patterns from the best bass pros on earth at the 2015 Forrest Wood Cup on Lake Ouachita. Brad Knight captured the Cup by mining one small creek end for four days. But beyond that, the rest of the top 10 patterns ran the gamut, from targeting schoolers over 40 feet to wolf packs of bass on the bank to brush piles to grass to mud flats and everywhere in between. Here’s a rundown. READ MORE »

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Knight Slays Ouachita

Lancing, Tenn., pro Brad Knight won the 2015 Forrest Wood Cup presented by Walmart on Lake Ouachita with a four-day total of 51 pounds, 12 ounces. In front of a standing-room-only crowd at Bank of the Ozarks Arena in Hot Springs, Ark., Knight weighed in 11-07 on day four to surpass Jacob Wheeler, who started the day with a 12-ounce lead. Fishing in just one area all four days, Knight locked up the first win of his FLW career. He earned $500,000 for his victory and pushed his career earnings total to more than $688,000. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-23-forrest-wood-cup-day-4-coverage

Forrest Wood Cup Day 4 Coverage

Daily updates from the Forrest Wood Cup on Lake Ouachita. READ MORE »

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Wheeler Back in Front

Jacob Wheeler loves Lake Ouachita. It’s where he fished his first Forrest Wood Cup in 2011, and it’s where he’ll take the tournament lead into the final day of competition at the 2015 Forrest Wood Cup presented by Walmart and hosted by Visit Hot Springs and the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism. Wheeler, the 2011 Cup champion, led this tournament on day one and slipped a couple spots on day two. He now has a very slim 12-ounce lead over Tennessean Brad Knight. The anglers will square off tomorrow on Ouachita starting at 7 a.m. against the rest of the top 10 pros for the top prize of $500,000. READ MORE »

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Top 5 Patterns from the Cup Day 3

Jacob Wheeler may have regained his lead in the Forrest Wood Cup on day three, but Brad Knight is right on his heels. Going into the final day, the two pros are separated by just 12 ounces. The margin is tight, and what’s going to make the final day fun to watch is the difference in the two anglers’ strategies. Wheeler is running a topwater pattern on the main lake, and fishing new water is part of his plan. Knight, however, has caught almost all of his weight from one 250-yard stretch of bass-rich creek channel. He literally knows every target he is fishing by heart. On the surface, Knight’s area looks to be the better bet. But he has shared the general area with Brandon Cobb and Mark Daniels Jr. for three solid days. And the bad news, at least for Knight, is that both Cobb and Daniels will be sharing the water with him again on the final day as both made the top-10 cut. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-22-forrest-wood-cup-day-3-coverage

Forrest Wood Cup Day 3 Coverage

Daily updates from the Forrest Wood Cup on Lake Ouachita. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-21-ramie-races-into-the-lead

Ramie Races into the Lead

On the back of a 17-pound, 14-ounce limit, which is the biggest of the tournament thus far, Ramie Colson Jr. jumped from seventh place to take over the lead at the halfway point of the 2015 Forrest Wood Cup presented by Walmart. Colson’s two-day total is 31 pounds, 1 ounce, which puts him almost 3 pounds ahead of Tennessee’s Brad Knight. The Forrest Wood Cup, which is hosted by Visit Hot Springs and the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism, moves into its top-20 round on Saturday. The top 10 pros after Saturday’s weigh-in advance to Sunday’s final round for a shot at the $500,000 top prize. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-21-top-5-patterns-from-the-cup-day-2

Top 5 Patterns from the Cup Day 2

At times, bass fishing can be a lot like real estate, where the three most important rules are location, location and location. The 2015 Forrest Wood Cup on Lake Ouachita presented by Walmart is starting to become a bit of a real estate game where location is the primary consideration in who climbs the leaderboard. And those mining the backs of creeks and tributaries are on the prime pieces of real estate. Consider that after day two, four of the top five pros are concentrating their fishing efforts in the back ends of creeks or rivers. All of these areas fit a classic late-summer, early-fall pattern where shad pack into the back of creek ditches that meander through shallow flats. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-21-forrest-wood-cup-day-2-coverage

Forrest Wood Cup Day 2 Coverage

Daily updates from the Forrest Wood Cup on Lake Ouachita. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-20-wheeler-hunting-history

Wheeler Hunting History

It’s never been done before, and it hasn’t happened yet, but Jacob Wheeler is in prime position to become the first two-time Forrest Wood Cup champion in history. Wheeler, of Indianapolis, Ind., brought in a 16-pound, 2-ounce limit of Lake Ouachita bass on the first day of the Cup, which is presented by Walmart and hosted by Visit Hot Springs and the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism. READ MORE »

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Top 5 Patterns from the Cup Day 1

After day one of the Forrest Wood Cup on Lake Ouachita, several things have come to light. For one, this event is not likely to produce a runaway win for anyone like it did when Scott Martin won here in 2011. Second, when the pros said Ouachita was going to be stingy, they meant it – only 29 of the 50 pros checked in limits today. Third, firm patterns are hard to come by on Lake Ouachita in August. Jacob Wheeler took the lead on day one in the event that’s presented by Walmart and hosted by Visit Hot Springs and the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism. With the help of a 5-pound bass, Wheeler weighed in a limit of 16 pounds, 2 ounces, but he had to sample a lot of different areas for his catch. Here’s how the rest of the top five got it done. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-20-forrest-wood-cup-day-1-coverage

Forrest Wood Cup Day 1 Coverage

Daily updates from the Forrest Wood Cup on Lake Ouachita. READ MORE »