April 5, 2014 by David A. Brown
GROVE, Ok. - Topping the Co-angler Division, Charles Parker, of Broken Arrow, Ok. caught three fish for 10-7 to push his tournament total to 35-9 and secure the Rayovac FLW Series Central Division win on Grand Lake.
Parker said he caught most of his fish on a 1/2-ounce chartreuse and white River-2-Sea Ish Monroe Bling spinnerbait with double willow leaf blades. On day three, he boated a trio of keepers - one on the spinnerbait, one on a Lucky Craft Pointer 100 jerkbait and the third on a 1/2-ounce green pumpkin/orange custom jig with Yum Jason Christie Critter.
"I was throwing the spinnerbait when we were back in shallow, muddier water, which is what I fished mostly the first two days," Parker said. "Today, my angler was out fishing jerkbaits on points in 5-6 feet of water. That's how we started and when we went back into a creek, I picked up a spinnerbait and caught one.
"I flipped the jig around a dock in 10-12 feet. This dock had a brush pile."
Danhausen slips to second
Dany Danhausen, of Kankakee, Ill. led the Co-angler Division for two days before finishing second with 33-3. Her day-one weight of 16-6 was the second largest sack in her division (behind the 16-9 caught by sixth-place Troy Lowery). On day two, she added 10-1 and then 6-12 in the final round.
Danhausen's key bait throughout the event was a Texas-rigged Strike King Rodent (beaver style bait). Rigging the bait with a 3/16-ounce tungsten bullet weight enabled here to fish the bait effectively.
"I kept it on the bottom and worked it really slow," she said. "I think that was the key because they weren't hitting moving baits for me. Also, as a co-angler, sometimes it's better to try something a little bit different than what your boaters are doing."
On day three, Danhausen fished shallow flats and caught two of her three keepers on the Rodent and added a third with a Lucky Craft crankbait in crawfish color.
Kapiton concludes in third
He typically fishes as a pro, but boat problems compelled George Kapiton, of Inverness, Fla. to switch to the co-angler side, where he placed third with 25-7. Kapiton caught his fish on a custom Medlock jig called the Big Head - a round head with a double weed guard.
"You can throw it in the wood here and it does really well," he said. "If you're not hung up, you have a better chance of catching them."
The tournament's youngest competitor, 18-year-old Michael Stricklin, of Vidalia, La., finished fourth with 25-3 and Jay Scott, of Jay, Ok., took fifth with 25-1.
Best of the rest
Rounding out the top-10 co-angler leaders at the Rayovac FLW Series Grand Lake event:
6th: Troy Lowery, or Shattuc, Ill., 25-1
7th: John Diffee, of Owasso, Ok., 24-9
8th: Justin Tye, of Westville, Ok., 23-9
9th: Bradley Smith, of Saint Jacob, Ill., 21-7
10th: David Blankenship, of Cushing, Ok., 21-7