Dodson pulls ahead on Bull Shoals

Despite having to change up his delivery, Robbie Dodson still managed to pull into the lead on Bull Shoals.

BULL SHOALS, Ark. - Robbie Dodson trailed the day-one top spot by 12 ounces, but today he finds himself on the other side of the narrow margin, with a 14-ounce lead going into the final round of FLW EverStart Series Central Division action on Bull Shoals Lake. Amassing a two-day total of 29 pounds, 4 ounces, the Harrison, Ark. pro flipped green pumpkin beaver style baits on day one, but he had to change things up today due to weather and water level. The mostly sunny conditions of a day prior gave way to cloudy skies that threatened rain throughout day two. Without the bright sunlight, fish weren't grouping as tightly to cover as they had been. Also, the reservoir's water level for the second day in a row, so all of the fish that had recently moved up to spawn were ushered back a little. "It was totally different today," Dodson said. "Yesterday, I was catching them by flipping the bushes, butRobbie Dodson they dropped the lake what looked like 6 inches to a foot last night and I couldn't get bit by flipping. I went two or three hours without a bite, so finally I went to a 2 1/2-inch Luck "E" Strike Fighting Craw on a 5/16-ounce finesse flipping jig and just started going down the bank casting." Noting that the fish still seemed as skittish as they were on day one, Dodson removed the jig's skirt for a smaller profile. Dodson also enhanced his green pumpkin bait's appearance by dyeing the claws red. "They didn't seem like they wanted to move as much as they did yesterday," he said. "Yesterday, I saw several fish moving around. You'd be going down the bank and they'd be boiling into the bank chasing shad. Today, it wasn't anything like that. "It seemed like they vacated the bank, so I just backed off a little bit and it seemed to work today. Every Declining water level pushed the Bull Shoals spawners further down the banks.day's a new day on this lake with them dropping this lake. I may go out tomorrow and not have a bite if I don't figure out the right little thing." Same as yesterday, Dodson fished the Lead Hill area. His productivity, however, was less than half of what he had on day one. "Once I changed baits, I caught one here, one there," he said. "Yesterday, I'd get in and area and if I caught one, I'd catch three or four. Today, if I caught one, I'd slow down and really fish it, but I'd only catch one. "Yesterday, I probably caught 25 keepers; today, I probably caught 10." Meredith moves up to second Ray Meredith, of Smiths Grove, Ky., added 14-10 to his day-one catch of 13-12 and moved up fiveDeclining water level pushed the Bull Shoals spawners further down the banks. spots from seventh to second with a total weight of 28-6. Targeting classic spawning scenarios of open areas with gravel banks, Meredith fished jigs and Texas-rigged plastics and found a 4-pound, 6-ounce bass in his limit. "That's the biggest fish I've caught all week," he said. "I've caught a lot of fish, I just can't find the big fish. I don't know if they're prespawn; I've only caught one with a bloody tail (a sign of nest clearing)." Meredith said he caught approximately 30 fish and stayed busy throughout the day. King holds at third Arkansas pro Zach King held on to his third-place position.On day one, Clarksville, Ark. pro Zach King found himself in a three-way tie for third place at 14-6. Today, he remained in the No. 3 spot, but shed the company. King's day-two score of 13-8 secured his final-round berth with a total weight of 27-14. King stuck with the same one-two combo of Texas-rigged green pumpkin Zoom trick worms and Zoom speed craws that he used on day one. Yesterday, he found fish on the smaller brush between the shoreline and the larger outside brush. Today's lower water level bumped the fish to those outer bushes. "I was just fishing bush-to-bush," King said. "Today, you couldn't see anything because of the wind and the clouds so I just stayed on the trolling motor." Crisenbery drops to fourth After leading the pro division on day one, Dave Crisenberry, of Flippin, Ark. had a tough go of it today Day-one leader DaveCrisenbery slipped to fourth after a tough day two.and slipped to fourth place. He caught a limit of 11-11 and tallied 27-2 in total weight. Crisenberry again used the same baits as he did on day one: a Gitzit tube, a 3/16-ounce shaky head with a green pumpkin worm and Alabama-rigged Berkley swimbaits. "I really struggled today," Crisenberry said. "I had three fish at 1 o'clock. I finally caught two more fish and culled a couple late this afternoon, but I just couldn't catch a big fish today." Dalbey makes big jump to fifth Rich Dalbey came into day two in 19th place with 12 pounds, but the Greenville, Texas pro make a big Rich Dalbey made a big move up to fifth place on day two.run all the way up to fifth place on the strength of his 14-pound, 13-ounce sack, which increased his total to 26-13. Dalbey said he stuck with the same dark colored wacky-rigged worms he fished yesterday. He targeted buck brush along the shorelines and had to work hard to assemble his limit. Throughout the day, he found that the slow, methodical presentations worked best. "This morning I went to a spot I hadn't fished yesterday, but on Tuesday (practice day) I had a limit by 8:30 a.m.," he said. "I just kept grinding it out and going to different spots. I had to fish really slowly. It seemed like they were all on the outside edges of the bushes. "If I moved the bait too fast, I couldn't get bit. I just had to keep at a steady pace and let that worm flutter down there. A lot of times, they'd hit it when it was on the bottom."Arkansas pro Keith Williams took Snickers Big Bass honors with his 5-13. Best of the rest Rounding out the top-10 pro leaders at the Bull Shoals event: 6th: Shane Long, of Springfield, Mo., 25-15 7th: Robert Dodson, of Harrison, Ark., 25-13 8th: Justin Lucas, of Guntersville, Ala., 25-9 9th: Lance Williams, of Billings, Mo., 25-4 10th: Frank Clark, of Benton, Ill., 24-9 Keith Williams, of Billings, Mo. caught the biggest sack of the tournament (19-15) and earned Snickers Big Bass honors for his 5-pound, 13-ounce bass. Plastics put Gillham atop co-angler field David Gillham, of Heath, Texas began, day two in sixth place with 9-14 but after adding an even 12 Co-angler leader David Gillham used a combination of plastic baits on day two.pounds today, he climbed five spots to the co-angler lead with 21-14. Today he flipped a Zoom brush hog and fished 5-inch Senkos on wacky and Texas rigs. "If a bank was a little bit steeper and the brush was a little bit deeper, I'd through the Texas -rigged brush hog," Gillham said. "I'd throw the Senkos on the shallower banks. They'd pretty much hit the baits on the fall." Steve Gregg, of Florissant, Mo. added 10-14 to the 10-13 he weighed on day one and clenched his final-round spot with a second-place total of 21-11. Gregg, who also placed second on day one, trails the lead by just 3 ounces. Jeff Johnson, of Ash Flat, Ark. placed third with 20-1, Ben Due, of Mauston, Wisc. was fourth at 17-8 and day-one leader Randy Rose, of Gainesville, Mo. took fifth with 16-14. Best of the rest Rounding out the top-10 co-angler leaders at the Bull Shoals event:This 4-pound, 5-ouncer earned the Snickers Big Bass award for Tommy Lowery. 6th: Tony Spinks, of Springfield, Mo., 16-14 7th: Jon Paulovich, Bryant, Ark., 16-9 8th: Thomas Loeffelman Jr., of Valles Mines, Mo., 16-6 9th: Mark Howard, of Mesquite, Texas, 15-9 10th: Steve Kumke, of Belleville, Ill., 14-10 Tommy Lowery, of Ofallon, Mo. took the Snickers Big Bass award on the co-angler side with his 4-pound, 5-ounce fish. Day three of EverStart Series Central Division action on Bull Shoals Lake continues at Friday's takeoff, scheduled to take place at 7:00 a.m. (Central) at the Bull Shoals Lake Boat Dock located on Eastwold Cove in Bull Shoals, Ark.

Tags: headline-story 

/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-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

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

/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

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 »