UPCOMING EVENT: Walmart Bass Fishing League - 2015 - Ohio River

Fels furthers lead at Okeechobee

Keith Fels of Ocala, Fla., amasses a 12-pound lead in the Rayovac FLW Series after day two thanks to this 10-pound, 9-ounce giant.

OKEECHOBEE, Fla. - After a rather lackluster day one of the Rayovac FLW Series event on Lake Okeechobee, anglers were certain day two was going to be better. After all, much warmer air and intermittent sunshine drove the water temperatures up into the low 60's. The bite did improve a tad, but overall it still was not the Okeechobee bag-buster everyone was hoping for. One man who seems to have the Okeechobee bite wired is Keith Fels of Ocala, Fla. The bite definitely improved for Fels today as he added 26 pounds, 7 ounces to his 20 pounds, 9 ounces from yesterday to compile a commanding lead with 47 pounds even, some 12 pounds heavier than second place. Fels' limit today included the day-two big bass weighing in at 10 pounds, 9 ounces. He has been the only angler to crack the 20-pound mark each day. "I had those by 9:30 this morning and I was done," Fels said. "When I caught the 10-pounder, it culled my little fish and I left the area to save it for tomorrow." Fels did reveal he is pitching, but the way he managed to get the 10-pounder in the boat borders on miraculous. "I made a pitch, got a bite, set the hook and missed," he said. "I pitched right back in there, got another bite, set the hook and it was on. I fought the fish until it bogged up into a huge wad of vegetation. As I was heaving on the line pulling the wad in, my 65-pound test braid broke up in the rod. The tag end of the line laid across a mat of hydrilla. The fish was so bogged down, it didn't move. I reached out, grabbed the tag end of line and basically hand-lined the giant wad of weeds to the boat and wrapped up inside was that 10-pounder." Ware second Kent Ware of Wadmalaw Island, S.C., moved to second place on the strength of his 19-pound catch for a two-day total of 34 pounds, 11 ounces. Kent Ware of Wadmalaw Island, S.C., moved up eight spots to second place on the strength of his 19-pound catch today for a two-day total of 34 pounds, 11 ounces. Ware was the Angler of the Year in the Southeastern Division of the Rayovac Series last season. And here's the unique part: he did most of it with a spinning rod. Ware uses a spinning rod most of the time, including here at Okeechobee, to punch vegetation like most do with conventional baitcasting gear. "It's what works for me," Ware said. "I'm just a lot more efficient with a spinning rod. It's faster and quieter for me and I can get away with lighter baits." Here at Okeechobee, Ware's spinning rod set-up is a heavy action 7-foot G. Loomis rod spooled with 50-pound braid. "A lot of people think spinning rods are only for light line," Ware added. "Not so. Spinning rods can handle heavy line just as well." McMillan third Jared McMillan of Belle Glade, Fla., is in third place with a two-day total of 33-10. Jared McMillan of Belle Glade, Fla., held onto to his third place spot from day one by hauling in 14 pounds, 6 ounces today for a two-day total of 33-10. While his older brother Brandon (9th place) is known for punching mats on the Big O, Jared is more about the casting and reeling of moving baits over vegetation. "I like the punching game too, but in order to do that, you have to fish around so many boats," the younger McMillan explained. "I really like being away from other boats. Yesterday I only saw two other boats out of all these boats out here. Today I saw maybe six or seven. But in order to avoid the pressure, you have to fish other ways. So it's not that I don't like punching mats - I love it. It's just that I would rather cast and reel something with two boats around than punch mats with 120 boats around." Kremer fourth Joseph Kremer of Osteen, Fla., climbed to the fourth place spot with a 16-pound, 11-ounce catch for a two-day total of 32 pounds, 5 ounces. Joseph Kremer of Osteen, Fla., climbed to the fourth place spot today with a 16-pound, 11-ounce catch for a two-day total of 32 pounds, 5 ounces. "I fished the same exact places in the same exact ways today and it was a little better," Kremer said. "The water is warming and it's pulling those fish to the hill. I don't catch much in the mornings and I can go back through the same areas after noon and they bite better. It's all about water temperature and it should be even better tomorrow." Pace fifth Keith Pace of Monticello, Ark., rounds out the fifth place spot with a two-day total of 31 pounds, 14 ounces. Keith Pace of Monticello, Ark., gives the thumbs up after finding out he finished the day in 5th place with a two-day total of 31 pounds, 14 ounces. "I've mostly been casting a Senko and a Horny Toad around," Pace said. "The place I'm fishing really turned on right at the end of the day. In the last five casts I caught three fish on back-to-back casts and two of those were four pounders. I can't wait to get back there tomorrow." Rest of the best Rounding out the top-10 pros in the Rayovac FLW Series event on Lake Okeechobee after day two: 6th: Val Osinski of Pompano Beach, Fla., two-day total of 31-13 7th: Thomas Helton of Charleston, Tenn., two-day total of 31-10 8th: Miles Burghoff of Guntersville, Ala., two-day total of 31-8 9th: Brandon McMillan of Clewiston, Fla., two-day total of 31-2 10th: Randy Haynes of Counce, Tenn., two-day total of 30-12 Fox leads co-anglers Tim Fox of Meridian, Miss., leads the Co-angler Division of the Rayovac Series on Lake Okeechobee with two-day total of 26 pounds, 12 ounces. Tim Fox of Meridian, Miss., leads the Co-angler Division of the Rayovac Series on Lake Okeechobee with two-day total of 26 pounds, 12 ounces. Fox brought in a 16-pound, 4-ounce limit today to take the lead. "All my better fish came from about 12:30 to 2 in the afternoon," Fox said. "I culled three times during that time frame." "I've mostly been throwing swimbaits," Fox said. "The area we were in had a lot of boats in it so I was trying to make long casts to places where boats had not fished. My pro and I were really aware of where boats had been and we purposely tried to fish our way into places that had not had a boat in them for a long while." Ronnie Green of Sebring, Fla., is in second place with a two-day total of 24 pounds, 5 ounces. Mitch Reynolds of Petal, Miss., is in third place with a two-day total of 23 pounds, 12 ounces. Rex Jaeger of Hamilton, Ohio, jumped to fourth place with a two-day total of 23 pounds, 9 ounces. Captain Don Lewis of Jacksonville, Fla., rounds out the top five co-anglers with 23 pounds, even. Big bass Manley Jones of Raleigh, N.C. caught the big bass in the Co-angler Division on day two weighing 7 pounds, 13 ounces. Rest of the best Rounding out the top-10 co-anglers in the Rayovac FLW Series event on Lake Okeechobee after day two: 6th: Alphonso Taylor of Kennesaw, Ga., two-day total of 22-7 7th: Dwight Griffith of Somerset, Ky., two-day total of 20-14 8th: Ty Solis of Albany, Ga., two-day total of 20-13 9th: Aaron Richardson of Destin, Fla., two-day total of 20-5 10th: Dean Harcourt of Sebastian, Fla., two-day total of 19-7

Tags: headline-story 

/news/2015-08-31-top-10-patterns-from-lake-erie

Top 10 Patterns from Lake Erie

Most of the other top top-10 finishers found their fish over rocky bottom structure around the Pelee area. Drop-shots and crankbaits dominated the catches. READ MORE »

/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-webster-runs-and-guns-for-win

Webster Runs and Guns for Win

Michael Webster of Gastonia, North Carolina, brought a five-bass limit totaling 13 pounds, 9 ounces to the scale Sunday to win the Walmart Bass Fishing League South Carolina Division Super Tournament on Lake Wylie with a two-day total of 10 bass weighing 27 pounds, 10 ounces. For his victory, Webster earned $4,476. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-29-experience-pays-for-boggs

Experience Pays for Boggs

Drew Boggs of Lebanon, Tennessee, brought five bass totaling 13 pounds, 12 ounces to the scale Sunday to win the Walmart Bass Fishing League Music City Division Super Tournament on Old Hickory Lake with a two-day total of 10 bass weighing 27 pounds, 2 ounces. For his victory, Boggs earned $4,257. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-29-jig-crankbait-carry-gray-to-victory

Jig, Crankbait Carry Gray to Victory

Brandon Gray of Bullock, North Carolina, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 14 pounds, 3 ounces Sunday to win the Walmart Bass Fishing League Piedmont Division Super Tournament on Kerr Lake with a two-day total of 10 bass weighing 32 pounds, 14 ounces. For his victory, Gray earned $5,886. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-29-hemken-searched-deep-for-bigger-bites

Hemken Searched Deep for Bigger Bites

Shawn Hemken of Walshville, Illinois, brought a five-bass limit to the scale Sunday weighing 11 pounds, 6 ounces to win the Walmart Bass Fishing League Illini Division Super Tournament on Lake Shelbyville with a two-day total of 10 bass weighing 26 pounds, 1 ounce. For his victory, Hemken earned $6,882. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-29-topwater-lifts-ragan-to-top

Topwater Lifts Ragan to Top

Thadeus Ragan of West Park, Florida, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 26 pounds, 8 ounces Sunday to win the Walmart Bass Fishing League Gator Division Super Tournament on Lake Okeechobee with a two-day total of 10 bass weighing 47 pounds, 10 ounces. For his victory, Ragan earned $6,922. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-29-martinkovic-runs-away-with-title

Martinkovic Runs Away with Title

Chris Martinkovic of Hamilton, Ohio, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 12 pounds, 9 ounces Saturday to win the fourth Walmart Bass Fishing League Hoosier Division tournament on the Ohio River. For his victory, Martinkovic earned $6,244. 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 »