Haynes goes wire-to-wire in victory

Pro Randy Haynes of Counce, Tenn., shows off his winning catch during the finals of the EverStart Series Pickwick Lake event.

FLORENCE, Ala. - After boating an incredible 33 pounds, 1 ounce on the first day of EverStart Series competition on Pickwick Lake, it appeared as though Randy Haynes of Counce, Tenn., was going to run away with the title. However, by the end of day two, Haynes was forced to watch his 5 1/2-pound lead melt all the way down to a mere 13 ounces. Now, with one day of fishing left in the tournament, everyone knew it was game on. And so did Haynes. "Coming into today I was really worried," said Haynes. "I knew that there were some great ledge fisherman in this tournament, (especially) Mark Rose. And I also knew that I (potentially) could be beat on Wilson Lake (by the Suratt brothers). So when I woke up today I knew I had to get out there and just go fishing. "But no matter what, I was going to keep fishing offshore," Haynes continued. "And whether there were only three fish there, I was going to live and die with that." In the end though, Haynes proved once again why his is one of the most revered anglers on Pickwick Lake. Bolstered by a whopping 26-poound, 14-ounce catch in the finals, the largest day-three stringer brought to the scales, Haynes maintained his overall lead for the third consecutive day, winning the title in unexpectedly comfortable fashion. "It's awesome," said Haynes, who recorded a total catch of 79 pounds, 11 ounces to net more than $30,000 in prize money as well as a brand new, fully equipped Ranger Z518 bass boat. "A couple of years ago I thought my winning was over. I still can't believe it. It's a very humbling sport and you never know when the winning is going to stop. I have family and friends here so I'm really just blown away right now." Haynes said he relied heavily all week on a combination of Strike King 6XD and 10XD crankbaits, targeting river ledges and humps in anywhere from 15 to 20 feet of water. Randy Haynes of Counce, Tenn., proudly displays his first-place trophy after winning the EverStart Series title on Pickwick Lake."I was really fortunate the fish made a move with the current," he said. "It was a grind out there all week. But today I was blessed with a great stringer." Throughout the week, Haynes put on a veritable offshore fishing clinic. After the first day of competition, where he bested his own personal one-day tournament record on Pickwick Lake, Haynes continued to plug along, forcing the rest of the field to play catch up - a hurdle which some of the best Pickwick anglers in the business weren't able to overcome. "I had five good days of practice and I know this lake very well," said Haynes. "So I knew I could do it. In the end, it wound up being a great week - probably one of the best weeks of fishing I've ever had in my life." The Suratt brothers make their mark A mere one day before the start of tournament action on Pickwick Lake, brothers Jeff and David Suratt of Leoma, Tenn., weren't quite sure if they were ready to throw their hats into the ring and register for this week's event. After all, they had to fork over a $1,000 entry fee and face the idea that they would be competing against some of the stiffest competition they had ever faced. Pro Jeff Suratt of Leoma, Tenn., used a catch of 76 pounds to finish the Pickwick Lake event in second place.But in the end, they decided to take the gamble. And as a result, Jeff walked away with second place overall as well as a check for more than $11,200. David fared nearly as well, winning more than $7,500 in prize money and taking third place overall - on his birthday no less. "It feels really good," said Jeff Suratt, who boated a total, three-day weight of 76 pounds. "I didn't really have the money to enter this tournament. And I was scared to death because I knew my wife would kill me if I didn't do well. So it turned out to be a good week. I really wanted to win, but I'll take second." While David was hoping one of the siblings could pull off a victory on the final day, he said he had no regrets - well, okay, one small regret. "It's been a great week and I couldn't have asked for anything more - other than finishing behind my little brother," said David, who netted a three-day total weight of 72 pounds, 5 ounces. "And it's been a great birthday today. (Suddenly) turning 31 ain't so bad." Both Suratt brothers said they fished in close proximity to each other all week, targeting bass with a combination of Big Hammer, Storm and Berkley swimbaits near Wheeler Dam. "We're mostly just fishing current breaks and rocks near the dam with 5- and 6-inch swimbaits," said Jeff. "It wasn't anything really specific. We're just fishing underwater." Pro David Suratt of Leoma, Tenn., parlayed a catch of 72 pounds, 5 ounces into a third-place finish on Pickwick Lake."Today was a good day for me," said David. "I had a repeat of day one and day two, only I caught more fish today. I also wound up catching a 5-pounder with only 15 minutes to go. (Unfortunately) today we had to be back in the lock earlier than the first two days. My only regret is that I wished we had a little more fishing time." However, with the conclusion of the tournament finally in the books, David reflected on the incredible week both he and his brother had just endured. "Did I envision my brother and I finishing one-two in the tournament? You know what, I did," said David. "Now did I think it was actually going to happen? Not really. But we came close - really close." The Wright stuff Keying on one dominant area all week, Kevin Wright of Waterloo, Ala., parlayed a 67-pound, 3-ounce catch into a fourth place finish. And he seemingly couldn't have been happier. Pro Kevin E. Wright of Waterloo, Ala., finished the EverStart Series Pickwick event in fourth place."I had a ball," said Wright. "I probably caught more fish this week than I have in an entire month - and I pretty much fish every day. It was just awesome." Wright said that he employed a swimbait all week, targeting a small honey hole that was just big enough "for one boat to fit on." "I was fishing this small area that had a series of rocks and boulders," he said. "I fished in about 6 or 7 feet of water and wound up fishing the same place all week. I probably caught over 70 pounds on that one spot alone." For his efforts, Wright took home nearly $6,800 in winnings. Rose rounds out top five Using a total catch of 62 pounds, 8 ounces, Walmart team pro Mark Rose of West Memphis, Ark., finished in fifth place overall on Pickwick Lake.Walmart team pro Mark Rose of West Memphis, Ark., turned a three-day 62-pouind, 8-ounce catch into a fifth-place finish and just over $6,000 in winnings. "It's been an awesome week," said Rose. "I love this part of Alabama and I always have an excellent time every time I come back here. I've been truly blessed." Like Haynes, Rose used a combination of Strike King 6XD and 10XD crankbaits to land the majority of his catch. An offshore fishing specialist, Rose said he fished to his strengths this entre week. However, although Rose is now almost universally recognized as one of the best deepwater ledge fishing anglers on tour, the Arkansas native said that if it wasn't for Haynes' tutelage, he might not be where he is today. "I owe a lot my offshore success to Randy Haynes," said Rose. "We've formed a great friendship over the years. And it always seems that whenever there is a deep ledge fishing tournament, I'll find an area and when I look up he's always right there with me. I really owe him a lot and I'm glad he won today. He deserves it." Best of the rest Pro Todd Rasberry of Killen, Ala., finished the EverStart Series Central Division event on Pickwick Lake in sixth place.Todd Rasberry of Killen, Ala., finished the Pickwick Lake event in sixth place overall, parlaying a total catch of 62-7 into nearly $5,500 in winnings. Rounding out the top-10 pro finalists: 7th: Jeremy Utley of Florence, Ala., 62-3 8th: Robert Boyd of Russellville, Ala., 53-12 9th: Jade Keeton of Florence, Ala., 52-9 10th: Matt C. VanMeter of Sharon, Tenn., 43-9 For a complete list of pro results, click here. A capacity crowd was on hand to witness final weigh-in at the EverStart Pickwick Lake event.To view photos from today's tournament, click here. EverStart Series Central Division action resumes June 13-15 on Kentucky Lake in Benton, Ky.

Tags: headline-story 

/news/2015-05-22-reneau-grabs-lead-on-seminole

Reneau Grabs Lead On Seminole

Though Reneau has weighed in 15-1 and 20-7 over two days for a total of 35 pounds, 8 ounces, he says he is only getting about six bites per day. READ MORE »

/news/2015-05-22-top-5-patterns-from-seminole-day-2

Top 5 Patterns From Seminole Day 2

A shake-up occurred on day two of the Rayovac FLW Series presented by Evinrude on Lake Seminole. Day one was all about slow, summertime fishing in the lake’s deep timber. Overnight a frontal passage dropped water and air temperatures and left a north wind howling down the lake. As a result, the timber bite cooled off and those fishing shallower waters climbed up the leaderboard. READ MORE »

/news/2015-05-22-lake-seminole-day-2-midday-update

Lake Seminole Day 2 Midday Update

The hot summer at Seminole turned back into spring this morning as a cold front blew through the area dropping air temps some 10 degrees with a blustery north wind. Sweatshirts were needed again as the cold air felt more like April than May. READ MORE »

/news/2015-05-21-enfinger-leads-on-seminole

Enfinger Leads On Seminole

Enfinger said he got off to a “fast start” this morning, sacking a limit by 10 a.m., but he only upgraded twice after that, catching about eight keepers on the day. READ MORE »

/news/2015-05-21-top-5-patterns-from-seminole-day-1

Top 5 Patterns From Seminole Day 1

Bradley Enfinger took the day-one lead at the Rayovac FLW Series presented by Evinrude on Lake Seminole fishing suspended bass in timber. Others in the top-5 fished both wood and grass on day one. READ MORE »

/news/2015-05-21-lake-seminole-midday-update

Lake Seminole Midday Update

Lake Seminole is known to be more of a quality lake than a quantity lake and that trait showed on the morning of day one as anglers who were catching fish were not necessarily getting many bites, but 3-pound pluses seemed to be the norm for the ones hauled in over the gunnel. READ MORE »

/news/2015-05-19-ledges-lift-wilson-to-top

Ledges Lift Wilson to Top

Tim Wilson of Gas City, Indiana, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 29 pounds, 10 ounces Saturday to win the fourth Walmart Bass Fishing League Choo Choo Division tournament of 2015 on Lake Guntersville. For his victory, Wilson earned $5,584. READ MORE »

/news/2015-05-19-two-in-a-row-for-fox

Two in a Row for Fox

Dwight Fox of Gainesboro, Tennessee, weighed four bass totaling 16 pounds, 2 ounces Saturday to win the third Walmart Bass Fishing League Mountain Division tournament of 2015 on Lake Cumberland. For his victory, Fox earned $4,463. READ MORE »

/news/2015-05-19-bluff-walls-carry-meredith

Bluff Walls Carry Meredith

GROVE, Okla. – Mitch Meredith of Hulbert, Oklahoma, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 18 pounds, 4 ounces Saturday to win the third Walmart Bass Fishing League Okie Division tournament of 2015 on Grand Lake. For his victory, Meredith earned $7,165. READ MORE »

/news/2015-05-19-tidwell-slows-down-for-title

Tidwell Slows Down for Title

MCCORMICK, S.C. – Brian Tidwell of Seneca, South Carolina, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 17 pounds, 11 ounces Saturday to win the fourth Walmart Bass Fishing League South Carolina Division tournament of 2015 on Clarks Hill Lake. For his victory, Tidwell earned $3,021. READ MORE »

/news/2015-05-19-ginter-gets-the-win

Ginter Gets the Win

CELINA, Ohio – Gary Ginter of Maplewood, Ohio, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 13 pounds, 4 ounces Saturday to win the first Walmart Bass Fishing League Buckeye Division tournament of 2015 on Grand Lake. For his victory, Ginter earned $3,963. READ MORE »

/news/2015-05-19-jig-does-the-trick-for-roselle

Jig Does the Trick for Roselle

MARBURY, Md. – Mike Roselle of La Plata, Maryland, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 16 pounds, 13 ounces Saturday to win the third Walmart Bass Fishing League Shenandoah Division tournament of 2015 on Potomac River. For his victory, Roselle earned $6,235. READ MORE »

/news/2015-05-17-thrift-by-3

Thrift by 3

The “numbers game.” It’s a term that Bryan Thrift used to describe his fishing on Lake Eufaula back in 2013 when he finished runner-up to Randy Haynes in a Walmart FLW Tour event. The method to his numbers madness was to hit as many solitary objects – stumps, brush piles, rocks, logs – on the bottom of Lake Eufaula as humanly possible in an eight-hour tournament day. When Thrift saw that Lake Eufaula was back on the 2015 Walmart FLW Tour schedule for May of this year, he grinned that patented Bryan Thrift grin because he already knew how to crunch the numbers at Eufaula. And Thrift is still grinning. After sacking up a final-day catch of 15 pounds, 5 ounces to top off 69-14 for the week, Thrift made the numbers work for his fourth FLW Tour win. He added another $125,000 to his bank account. READ MORE »

/news/2015-05-17-lake-eufaula-day-4-coverage

Lake Eufaula Day 4 Coverage

Daily updates from the Walmart FLW Tour event on Lake Eufaula presented by Quaker State. READ MORE »

/news/2015-05-16-morrow-thrift-neck-and-neck

Morrow, Thrift Neck and Neck

Georgia pro Troy Morrow brought in 15 pounds, 4 ounces on the third day of competition at the Walmart FLW Tour event presented by Quaker State on Lake Eufaula to increase his tournament total to 54-13. Morrow maintains his lead for the second consecutive day, but he won’t sleep comfortably tonight with North Carolina hammer Bryan Thrift just 4 ounces off the lead with 54-09. READ MORE »

/news/2015-05-16-top-5-patterns-from-lake-eufaula-day-3

Top 5 Patterns from Lake Eufaula Day 3

Troy Morrow is leading the Walmart FLW Tour event presented by Quaker State on Lake Eufaula. However, with one day left to fish, he has a big problem going into the last day: Bryan Thrift. The Shelby, N.C., pro is just 4 ounces behind Morrow. Here’s how Thrift and the rest of the top five caught their fish. READ MORE »

/news/2015-05-16-lake-eufaula-day-3-coverage

Lake Eufaula Day 3 Coverage

Daily updates from the Walmart FLW Tour event on Lake Eufaula presented by Quaker State. READ MORE »

/news/2015-05-15-morrow-marches-ahead

Morrow Marches Ahead

Day two at the Walmart FLW Tour event presented by Quaker State at Lake Eufaula challenged anglers with tougher conditions as clouds and wind hindered much of the offshore bite. But while some of the top 10 struggled to duplicate their success from day one, Troy Morrow moved from second up into the driver's seat with a day-two catch of 18 pounds, 1 ounce. His total for the event stands at 39-09, giving him a 1-04 lead over day-one leader Clent Davis. READ MORE »

/news/2015-05-15-top-5-patterns-from-lake-eufaula-day-2

Top 5 Patterns from Lake Eufaula Day 2

Troy Morrow took over the lead on the second day of the Walmart FLW Tour event presented by Quaker State on Lake Eufaula. Morrow did most of his damage late in the day once other pros in earlier flights had checked in. He’s working a milk run of brush piles, as are many of the top pros, but the continued fishing pressure is starting to really affect the bite. Here’s how the rest of the top five is dealing with the pressure. READ MORE »

/news/2015-05-15-lake-eufaula-day-2-coverage

Lake Eufaula Day 2 Coverage

Daily updates from the Walmart FLW Tour event on Lake Eufaula presented by Quaker State. READ MORE »