UPCOMING EVENT: Rayovac FLW Series - 2015 - Lake Erie

Carmell slips but doesn't fall

Moyock, N.C., native Chris Carmell proudly displays his trophy after a wire-to-wire victory on Kerr Lake for the first EverStart Northern Division event of the year.

HENDERSON, N.C. - To say fishing on Kerr Lake during the first EverStart Northern Division event of the year was tough would be putting it lightly. Out of 101 pros during the first day of competition, only 50 five-bass limits were weighed in. On the final day only six limits of bass were brought to the scales. Chris Carmell of Moyock, N.C., celebrates as he edges out the competition on the final day of the EverStart Northern Division event.The man who had dominated the first two days of the event managed to slip today, but that didn't matter. Chris Carmell of Moyock, N.C., brought in three bass that weighed a total of 5 pounds, 2 ounces. Luckily he had put enough distance between himself and the other anglers on the first two days of competition. He ended up with a three-day total weight of 36 pounds, 1 ounce which gave him the win by only 7 ounces. "I was feeling pretty confident coming into today," said Carmell. "I had caught two nice limits early on the first two days, and that is kind of what I expected to do today. But when I pulled up to my starting spot I realized that the fish were gone. I knew then that I would have to run around and fish history basically, places I knew I could catch keepers." Carmell switched up his game plan and though he only caught a few fish, it showed having history on this lake was a life saver. "I figured I needed to catch about 8 pounds today. And when I couldn't catch that I never lost my cool or focus on the water. I just stayed patient and luckily the bite was tough for some of the other guys too." Leader Chris Carmell shows off his primary bait, a Reaction Innovation Big Unit worm. Coming into this event Carmell felt like the lake owed him after he suffered a loss back in 2005 during the BFL regional event on Kerr, which he lost by ounces. Today's win was a much need weight of his shoulders. The first two days he relied heavily on a 10-inch Reaction Innovation Big Unit in watermelon/green pumpkin color. A Dave's Tournament Tackle Jig also helped put a few fish in the boat for Carmell. Today, however, he had to switch it up and downsize. His baits of choice today were a 3/8-ounce football head jig with a green pumpkin Yamamoto Senko. He also mixed in a Carolina rig that he pulled a Zoom Baby Brush Hog on, also green pumpkin in color. Carmell currently leads the BFL Shenandoah Division in points for the year and this victory on Kerr Lake is one more reason to keep him smiling. "I leave Wednesday for the next BFL on the Potomac River and I couldn't be more excited. This has been an exceptional year for me so far. And you know, when you are on a roll you might as well roll, cause it's not gonna last forever." Gainey slips into second Ranger pro Nick Gainey weighed a three-day total of 35 pounds, 11 ounces to take home second. Ranger pro Nick Gainey was one of few anglers who managed to stay consistent in his weights this week. On day one he only brought four fish to the scales for a total of 10 pounds even. He followed that up with a day two weight of 12 pounds, 15 ounces to put him in third. Today the Charleston, S.C., native weighed an impressive 12 pounds, 12 ounces take over second place. His three-day total was 35-11, just ounces shy of a win. "This week I definitely was the definition of insanity, I did the same thing over and over expecting different results," said the Ranger pro. "In practice I fished a few different creeks and marked different laydowns that I got bites on. During the tournament I fished the same creek mostly over and over and over." To tackle these creeks, Gainey threw a Owner shaky head rigged with a Zoom Trick Worm. "Color didn't make a difference as long as it was green pumpkin, watermelon, red or a combination," Gainey chuckled. He switched weights between 1/8 and a 3/16 ounce depending on depth and wind. "I have no regrets about this tournament, I fished as hard as I could. Really, I went into today with the mindset I was fishing for second. I caught a 4-pounder in the first 10 minutes today. Then shortly after that I caught a 3-pounder. It really helped boost my confidence, unfortunately, I had to grind it out to finish my limit." Gainey now has his sights set on winning the points race this year for the EverStart Northern Division. Second place on Kerr Lake has given him the confidence to carry throughout the rest of the season. "I'm not that good, I'm not that lucky, but I sure am blessed." Gainey walked away with a check worth over $9,000 in prize money. Lambeth drops to third George Lambeth of Thomasville, N.C., took third place at the EverStart Northern Division event with a three-day total weight of 34 pounds, 13 ounces. Thomasville, N.C., pro George Lambeth fished an excellent tournament. He averaged around 11 pounds per day and stayed in the top 10 from the start. Lambeth finished the event with a total weight of 34 pounds, 13 ounces. "I focused on 12 feet of water the whole time," said Lambeth. "I had one really good point which is usually kind of a community hole but not many guys fished it. I managed to catch limits early every day which helped take the pressure off. When I started there today I got no bites and had to start moving to find new fish. "I ran to another `community' hole that also didn't have anyone on it and caught some nice fish. I actually caught two fish on my crankbait at the same time today which was pretty cool." Lambeth threw one bait the entire week. That was a modified Rapala DT-10 body with a DT-16 bill on it. The bait was customized by a man named Calvin Johnson. He matched that with 10-pound Shooter Sunline and a 6-foot, 10-inch Gator crankbait rod. "I was trying to get a reaction bite. I would grind the bait into that bottom and when I would run into something - wood or rocks- I would stop the bait and that is when I got my bites. The other big part of my presentation was making long cast." For his efforts, Lambeth took home a check for over $7,600. Divito holds onto fourth Brian Divito of Trafford, Pa., took fourth place in his first time fishing an EverStart event with a three-day total of 33 pounds, 3 ounces. To make a top-10 cut on your first time fishing an EverStart event is one thing. But to finish in the top five is even more amazing. That is exactly what Trafford, Pa., pro Brian Divito did this week with a three-day total weight of 33 pounds, 3 ounces that put him in fourth place. Throughout the week Divito adjusted to the conditions that were given to him. He started on a deep pattern, but when that produced only 5 pounds, 5 ounces on day one he knew he had to change. Divito decided to go shallow and fish his strength. That change-up had him sitting in fourth place after day two. It also helped him land one of the biggest bags of the tournament - a 16 pound, 8 ounce sack of fish. "Today I went back to the same creek that I caught my fish in yesterday," said the Pennsylvania native. "The fish weren't really there today so my co-angler and I made a move to a point. In about the first 10 minutes on the point I caught my biggest fish of the day on a Rapala DT series crankbait." He fished mostly a Strike King Coffee Tube and a homemade jig during the event. The tube was green pumpkin and the jig he made to resemble a crawfish he saw under a rock near his campsite. It was mostly green pumpkin with a few strands of orange in it. He tipped the jig with a summer craw colored creature bait. When he did throw the Rapala crank it was a perch color. "I just kept my head down and kept pounding the bank today to catch what I did. I caught a fish off of a tree in the last three minutes, it happens to be the same tree I did the same thing on yesterday. "I wanted to cash a check this week, that's really what my goal was," Divito said. Despite his four fish he brought to the scales it was still good enough to bring home a check worth over$6,800. Powroznik rallies up to fifth Snapple pro Jacob Powroznik captured the fifth place spot at the Northern Division EverStart on Kerr Lake with a total weight of 32 pounds, 6 ounces for three days of fishing. After traveling straight from the Walmart FLW Tour on Kentucky Lake last weekend, Snapple pro Jacob Powroznik came straight to Kerr Lake. He barely got a day of practice on the lake before the first day of competition. The Prince George, Va., pro managed to put a pattern together in the final hour of competition and ended the day in 23rd place. He stuck to his pattern on day two and brought in 11 pounds, 2 ounces, good enough to jump him into ninth place. Powroznik kept up with his deep pattern and knowledge of the lake to put together his best bag of the tournament - 12 pounds, 4 ounces - that brought him up the leaderboard into fifth place. "I like fishing here this time of year," said the Snapple pro. "The fish can really get grouped up deep, but this cold front came through and messed them up. I just wish I would have made the adjustment I did sooner." Powroznik focused on isolated rocks in deeper water. He threw a Texas-rigged Berkley 12-inch power worm. When he realized that the cold front made the fish suspend more, that is when he made the change to a drop-shot. He would wait until he could mark the fish on his sonar and then drop down to them. A Berkley Havoc Bottom Hopper worm was the primary bait on his drop-shot. For his efforts, Powroznik took home a check for over $6,100. Rest of the Best Rounding out the top-10 pro finalists: 6th: Chris Johnston of Peterborough, Ontario, 31-12 7th: Tom Wilkinson of Oxford, N.C., 29-7 8th: Bill Chapman of Salt Rock, W.Va., 29-1 9th: Calvin Young of Prince George, Va., 28-5 10th: Joseph Wood of Westport, Mass., 22-15 For a complete list of results click here. The next EverStart Series Northern Division tournament will be July 19-21 at Lake Champlain in Plattsburgh, N.Y. The City of Plattsburgh will host the event.

Tags: headline-story 

/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 »

/news/2015-08-29-lake-erie-day-3-midday-update

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 »

/news/2015-08-28-top-5-patterns-from-lake-erie-day-2

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 »

/news/2015-08-28-lefebre-rhode-tied-at-the-top

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 »

/news/2015-08-28-lake-erie-day-2-midday-update

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 »

/news/2015-08-27-top-5-patterns-from-lake-erie-day-1

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 »

/news/2015-08-23-knight-slays-ouachita

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 »

/news/2015-08-22-wheeler-back-in-front

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 »

/news/2015-08-22-top-5-patterns-from-the-cup-day-3

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 »

/news/2015-08-20-top-5-patterns-from-the-cup-day-1

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 »