Pugh’s groove

BAINBRIDGE, Ga. - He's been second. He's been third. He's been fourth. In fact, looking at Greg Pugh's Stren Series record for the last eight years, the Cullman, Ala., pro has finished in just about every position in the top 10 except for one: first. That all changed today as Pugh won his first Stren Series event on Lake Seminole. And the win could not have come at a better time for the Pedigree pro. "I've been through a drought over the last 12 months," said Pugh, who only collected four checks out of 15 FLW Outdoors events last year. "When you're in one of those dry spells, it really works on you. You start to wonder if you're doing things right. You start to question your fishing and your decisions. "Yesterday, when I caught the 26-10, it was like I broke free of all that doubt. I haven't caught them like that in quite a while, and to do that made me feel like my old self again. So this win not only helps financially, it helps mentally as well." Pugh went into Saturday's finals with over a 9-pound lead and caught five fish Greg Pugh's winning lures.for 11 pounds, 10 ounces to fend off a hard 16-pound, 9-ounce charge from fellow Alabamian Greg Vinson. Pugh ended the event with a four-day total of 53 pounds, 9 ounces. Pugh committed himself to backwaters off the Chattahoochee River, where he worked the bass with a flipping stick. He targeted matted hyacinths with three key baits: a Gambler Ugly Otter, a Little Otter and a Net Bait Baby Paca Craw. All plastics were topped with a 3/4-ounce tungsten weight and pitched on 60-pound-test Stealth braided line. In all, Pugh won $25,000 cash and a fully loaded Ranger boat for his win. Vinson finishes runner-up Pro Greg Vinson finished second with a four-day total of 48 pounds, 15 ounces worth $9,832.Greg Vinson of Wetumpka, Ala., came after Pugh with guns blazing today, turning in the best catch of the day - 16 pounds, 9 ounces - but it was not enough to overtake him. Vinson finished second with a four-day total of 48 pounds, 15 ounces worth $9,832. Vinson spent his week in the lower end of the Chattahoochee River around the Man-made Island area throwing rattling, lipless crankbaits to clumps of grass along the river channel. "I was using a 1/2-ounce Rat-L-Trap in copper and a 5/8-ounce Yozuri Rattlin' Vibe in red," Vinson said. "I switched to 15-pound-test fluorocarbon today to help the bait get down in the grass better. "The main thing for me was to keep covering water," he said. "Making long casts and ripping the trap up out of the grass was the key." Davis third Tony Davis of Williston, Fla., finished third with a four-day total of 35 pounds, Pro Tony Davis of Williston, Fla., finished third with a four-day total of 35 pounds, 10 ounces worth $8,849.10 ounces worth $8,849. Davis spent his week Carolina rigging 10 to 12 feet of water in the lower end of Spring Creek. His primary plastics were a Zoom lizard and Trick Worm in watermelon color. "These were just classic staging breaks in front of spawning bays," Davis said of his best areas. "It was never really fast and furious, just a slow and steady bite." Cox fourth Pro Mike Cox of Huntsville, Ala., finished fourth with a four-day total of 35 pounds, 6 ounces worth $7,866.Mike Cox of Huntsville, Ala., finished fourth with a four-day total of 35 pounds, 6 ounces worth $7,866. Cox fished in the Paramore Landing area of the Chattahoochee River during the first three days, pitching a 4-inch Yum Megatube in green-pumpkin with a 1/2-ounce tungsten Penetrator weight to reed lines. Today his pitching water muddied up so he adapted by fishing grass flats in the lower Chattahoochee with a 1/2-ounce Rat-L-Trap in a firetiger color. Oneal fifth Lonnie Oneal of Valdosta, Ga., finished fifth with a four-day total of 33 pounds,Pro Lonnie Oneal of Valdosta, Ga., finished fifth with a four-day total of 33 pounds, 9 ounces worth $6,883. 9 ounces worth $6,883. Oneal spent most of the week fishing backwaters off the Chattahoochee River. He pitched a Stanley jig teamed with a Zoom Speed Craw to matted duckweed for a majority of his early-round catches. Today, the water dropped in his primary area, and he was concerned about not being able to get out of his area. "From there, I ran down to the main lake and started fishing a Rat-L-Trap around grass points," he added. Rest of the best Rounding out the top 10 pros at the Stren Series Southeast Division event at Lake Seminole: 6th: David Lowery of Milledgeville, Ga., four-day total of 32-4, $5,899 7th: Clark Smith of Pell City, Ala., 32-3, $5,408 8th: Craig Dowling of Madison, Ala., 30-14, $4,916 9th: Ron Klys of Gainesville, Fla., 27-12, $4,424 10th: Jerry Kelley of Wewahitchka, Fla., 25-12, $3,933 The next Stren Series event will take place Feb. 7-10 and kick off the Texas Division season. The next Stren Series Southeast Division event will be held on Lake Eufaula March 7-10.

Tags: headline-story  rob-newell 

/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 »

/news/2015-03-20-day-1-patterns-from-the-college-open

Day 1 Patterns from the College Open

The Northwest Missouri State University team of Andrew Nordbye and Adam Almontadi took the day-one lead in the FLW College Fishing Open on Kentucky Lake. While their pattern seems to be effectively refined – they were using only one lure and had no others out on the deck – Nordbye and Almontadi don’t have this one sewed up yet. The rest of the top five is just a few pounds behind the leaders. Here’s how they made it into contention going into the final day. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-20-gautney-under-pressure

Gautney Under Pressure

Day two of the Rayovac FLW Series Southeast Division event on Guntersville is just as misty and nasty as the first. Lucky for us, the first day of the Mercury-presented event featured huge catches throughout the field. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-20-college-open-day-1-midday-update

College Open Day 1 Midday Update

“You should have been here yesterday” might have been the motto for the first day of fishing in the FLW College Fishing Open on Kentucky Lake. Though many of the 194 teams entered in the two-day event out of Moor’s Resort & Marina reported good to excellent practices, many of the same anglers were complaining about a lack of fish on opening morning of the competition. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-19-gautney-cranks-up-the-lead

Gautney Cranks Up The Lead

Gautney says he keyed on staging fish in several very specific locations and one specific depth. He and co-angler Antoni Bicy caught 59 pounds, 8 ounces off of his spots, and he seems confident about his ability to keep catching them the rest of the event. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-19-top-5-patterns-from-guntersville-day-1

Top 5 Patterns from Guntersville Day 1

The first day of the Rayovac FLW Series event on Lake Guntersville was a welcome departure from the grumblings of practice. Though fans weren’t treated to multiple 30-pound limits on the pro side, like at the Walmart Bass Fishing League event at Guntersville a couple of weekends ago, it still took more than 25 pounds to get into the top five on day one of this Mercury-presented tournament. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-14-morrison-wins-on-dale-hollow

Morrison Wins on Dale Hollow

BYRDSTOWN, Tenn. – Charles Morrison of Georgetown, Kentucky, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 20 pounds, 11 ounces Saturday to win the first Walmart Bass Fishing League Music City Division tournament of 2015 on Dale Hollow Lake. For his victory, Morrison earned $3,926. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-14-hughan-claims-arkie-division-title-on-greers-ferry

Hughan Claims Arkie Division Title on Greers Ferry

GREERS FERRY, Ark. – William Hughan of Little Rock, Arkansas, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 14 pounds, 4 ounces Saturday to win the second Walmart Bass Fishing League Arkie Division tournament of 2015 on Greers Ferry Lake. For his victory, Hughan earned $4,350. READ MORE »

/news/2015-03-14-bridwell-takes-opener-on-cherokee

Bridwell Takes Opener on Cherokee

MORRISTOWN, Tenn. – Jason Bridwell of Gray, Tennessee, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 17 pounds, 7 ounces Saturday to win the first Walmart Bass Fishing League Volunteer Division tournament of 2015 on Cherokee Lake. For his victory, Bridwell earned $5,127. READ MORE »