Sweet Pete

PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. - Pete Gluszek has toiled and contended for a number of years in Northern Stren Series competition, but he had yet to win one - until today. Saturday the pro from Franklinville, N.J., iced his first FLW Outdoors victory by catching a hefty 17-pound, 6-ounce limit of largemouth bass at Lake Champlain, winning the Northeast Division season closer with a two-day, final-round weight of 33-0. "This is so special. This year I made a decision to come over here and compete exclusively with FLW Outdoors," he said. "I'm just so happy to be here. It's so exciting to win after making that decision." Gluszek cleared some $20,000 in winnings and Ranger contingency money for the victory, plus a new boat, all of which he says will come in handy this fall. "I'm getting married, so I've got a big wedding coming up, plus a new house," he said. "This comes at a really good time for me." Pete GluszekGluszek certainly earned his keep at Champlain this week. With nasty winds and canceled competition dominating the first two days, plus an extremely tight limit-fest on Friday, it would have been easy to lose concentration. But the winner stuck to a game plan he formulated in practice, relying Saturday on a cache of largemouths in the New York Arm area that he found last week. "I found these fish the first day of practice. The first day, with that monster south wind, it would have been tough to fish that area with any success at all, so I found some other, more protected fish that helped me make the cut," he said. "Today, the wind was perfect. It wasn't blowing hard. We passed over the area and I caught a 4 1/2-pounder on the first pass. It was one 3- and 4-pounder after that. We were culling out 3-pounders all day, and it's a beautiful thing when that happens." Pete Gluszek hoists his first Stren Series winnerGluszek fished a variety of cover Saturday - rocks, trees, pilings, blowdowns - and caught the bulk of his fish on two baits: a Vertical Lures Jig X and a Net Bait Paca Craw. The air temperature never really climbed above 55 degrees all day, and that played right into his largemouth strategy. "Today I fished deeper, about 10 to 15 feet. The weather really affected my decision-making," he said. "On cold mornings like this, those fish get blasted right off the flats." Gluszek said he caught some 15 good keepers Saturday, but he wasn't the only one in his boat whacking them. His co-angler partner, Tim George, actually outfished him by 2 ounces and won the Co-angler Division. Said Gluszek, "At about noon I looked at him and said, `Do you think you won your division? I think I won mine." Pro Aaron Wessels of Watervliet, N.Y., mustered a five-largemouth limit weighing 15 pounds even Saturday but finished second with a total of 31-10.Wessels second Friday's pro leader, Aaron Wessels of Watervliet, N.Y., went south and mustered a five-largemouth limit weighing 15 pounds even Saturday but finished second with a total of 31-10. He earned $10,000. "Today I pretty much boated everything I caught, but I feel I might have left just a little early down there. I just wanted to be sure to make it back on time. You never know on Champlain," he said. Wessels caught his fish on the Ticonderoga, N.Y., end of the lake, mainly pulling Texas-rigged Senkos through milfoil. Jacob Powroznik of Prince George, Va., finished third for the pros with a final weight of 31 pounds even. He caught a limit of smallmouths weighing 15-10 Saturday.Smallie-happy Powroznik third Jacob Powroznik of Prince George, Va., finished third for the pros and collected $8,900 with a final weight of 31 pounds even. He caught a limit of smallmouths weighing 15-10 Saturday. "We fish for largemouths from January through August on the tour," said Powroznik, who targeted exclusively smallmouths with a drop-shot this week. "When I come up here, I make a conscious decision not to have one (largemouth) in my livewell. I'm just up here to have fun with these smallmouths." Pro Charlie Hartley of Grove City, Ohio, finished fourth with a final weight of 30 pounds, 6 ounces. He caught a limit weighing 15-11 Saturday.Hartley fourth Pro Charlie Hartley of Grove City, Ohio, finished fourth and collected $7,900 with a final weight of 30 pounds, 6 ounces. He caught a limit weighing 15-11 Saturday. He, too, echoed his appreciation for the smallmouths of Lake Champlain. He fished deep water with a Venom green-pumpkin-copper tube for most of the week. "They're the prettiest fish in the world," he said. "I'm a smallmouth-bass junkie. I probably caught 50 fish today." Kevin Kartesz of Jamestown, N.Y., rounded out the top five pros with a final weight of 30 pounds, 4 ounces. He caught a limit weighing 15-11 Saturday.Kartesz fifth Kevin Kartesz of Jamestown, N.Y., rounded out the top five pros and collected $7,400 with a final weight of 30 pounds, 4 ounces. He caught a limit weighing 15-11 Saturday. "It was a long way down there, But the smallies I was catching in practice just weren't big enough," said Kartesz, who caught the bulk of his fish Saturday, all largemouths, in the Ticonderoga area on a white rat bait. Rest of the best Rounding out the top 10 Pro Division finishers at Lake Champlain: 6th: Gregg Seal of Eldred, Pa., 10 bass, 29-10, $6,400 7th: David Reault of Livonia, Mich., 10 bass, 26-5, $5,400 8th: Dave Lefebre of Union City, Pa., 10 bass, 25-6, $4,900 9th: Kevin Bishop of Hilton, N.Y., seven bass, 19-7, $4,400 10th: Scot Dobson of Clarkston, Mich., five bass, 15-5, $3,900 Lefebre wins Northeast standings title With the close of the 2006 season, Lefebre officially claimed the pro standings title in the Northeast Division. He finished with 750 points. Bishop chased him until the final two days, but he ended up second with 739 points. Powroznik came in third with 685 points. Lefebre's 2006 Northeast Division results: Kerr Lake - 41st, Lake Erie - 4th, Potomac River - 1st, Lake Champlain - 8th. 2006 Stren season done, championship next This was the final regular-season event of the 2006 Stren Series. The next event will be the Stren Series Championship, to be held at Wheeler Lake near Decatur, Ala., Nov. 1-4.

Tags: headline-story  jeff-schroeder 

/news/2015-03-29-lefebre-lands-on-top

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 »

/news/2015-03-29-lewis-smith-lake-day-4-coverage

Lewis Smith Lake Day 4 Coverage

Day 4 reports from the Walmart FLW Tour on Lewis Smith Lake READ MORE »

/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-lewis-smith-lake-day-3-coverage

Lewis Smith Lake Day 3 Coverage

Day 3 reports from the Walmart FLW Tour on Lewis Smith Lake 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

Day 2 reports from the Walmart FLW Tour on Lewis Smith Lake READ MORE »

/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

Day 1 reports from the Walmart FLW Tour on Lewis Smith Lake READ MORE »

/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 »

/news/2015-03-21-griffin-gets-win-on-ross-barnett

Griffin Gets Win on Ross Barnett

BRANDON, Miss. – Jason Griffin of Benton, Mississippi, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 23 pounds, 2 ounces Saturday to win the first Walmart Bass Fishing League Mississippi Division tournament of 2015 on Ross Barnett Reservoir. For his victory, Griffin earned $5,349. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-20-top-5-patterns-from-guntersville-day-2

Top 5 Patterns from Guntersville Day 2

The second day of the Rayovac FLW Series Southeast Division tournament on Lake Guntersville proved as remarkable as the first – or perhaps better, considering today’s parade of big fish included a 12-pound, 10-ounce behemoth caught by fourth-place pro Trevor Fitzgerald for the day’s Big Bass prize. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-20-hall-holds-steady-for-lead

Hall Holds Steady For Lead

Joe Hall of Lake City, Minn. wasn’t confident about his chances going onto the second day of competition of the Rayovac FLW Series Southeast Division event on Lake Guntersville. Nonetheless, he held steady with a 27-pound, 5-ounce catch that only barely fell short of the 28-1 he weighed on the first day. With a two-day total of 55 pounds, 6 ounces, Hall holds a 1-pound, 12-ounce lead over Cameron Gautney going into the final day of the Mercury presented tournament. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-20-missouri-anglers-lead-college-open

Missouri Anglers Lead College Open

Andrew Nordbye and Adam Almohtadi of Northwest Missouri State University of Maryville, Mo., took the lead in the opening round of the FLW College Fishing Open on Kentucky Lake with 25 pounds, 2 ounces. Heading into Saturday’s second and final round, the University of Kentucky’s Ryan Collins and Hunter Fulcher sit in second place with 22-14, while Ethan Flack and Konnor Kennedy of the University of Alabama are currently third with 22-9. Details to follow. READ MORE »