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Quick Bites: FLW Series Old Hickory Lake, Day 3

Quick Bites: FLW Series Old Hickory Lake, Day 3
Tommy Martin signs the cast of young bass fan Michael Henry.

Wal-Mart FLW Series
Old Hickory Lake, Gallatin, Tenn.
Opening round, Friday

Freezing out there ... That's hardly true, but that was the sentiment from many FLW Series anglers as they crossed the stage on day three. In reality, temperatures dropped approximately 20 degrees with highs in the low to mid-70s. Also helping to cool things down were periods of light, intermittent rain.

Randy Blaukat shows off part of his day-three catch from Old Hickory Lake.Excellence in consistency ... It's hard to criticize the performance of Fuji pro Randy Blaukat. Each day of competition, Blaukat brought in nearly identical five-bass limits. His tournament creel on day one weighed 10-1, his day-two bag weighed 10-12, and he brought 9-5 to the scale today. What does three days of consistent angling get you on Old Hickory Lake? How about a check worth $11,500 and 180 points that will help him qualify for the 2007 Forrest Wood Cup. One would think that, with nearly equal weights each day, Blaukat was fishing the same area with the same baits. "I've just been fishing intuitively and adjusting to the conditions every day," said the Lamar, Mo., pro. "The first day I caught them on a finesse worm, the second day on a crankbait and today on a topwater."

Pro Anthony Gagliardi and wife Kristin celebrate their one-year anniversary.Happy anniversary ... While for most pros, day three on Old Hickory meant their last chance at qualifying for the top-10 cutoff. For pro Anthony Gagliardi, it meant much more. Today is the one-year anniversary for Gagliardi and his wife, Kristin. Up to this point, Gagliardi had been enjoying a solid, yet unspectacular, tournament. He kicked it up a notch today for his sweetheart with a limit weighing 12 pounds, 13 ounces. Kristin's anniversary gift was a 15th-place finish and a check for $12,500. Despite the joyous occasion, the Prosperity, S.C., pro has a little more than romance weighing on his mind these days. Heading into the final Wal-Mart FLW Tour event on Lake Champlain, Gagliardi has a 35-point lead in the standings over his nearest competitor, Jim Moynagh. "It's mine to lose," said Gagliardi, referring to the 2006 Land O'Lakes Angler of the Year award. "All I have to do is be consistent, which I've done all year. I just wish it was sooner so I didn't have so much time to think about it."

Pro in the making ... Young guns Brent Ehrler, Jason Knapp and Gabe Bolivar take heed because it is only a matter of time before 4-year-old Michael Henry is catching hefty five-bass limits in major tournaments. At today's weigh-in, Henry had his cast signed by some of his favorite pro anglers. Henry broke his arm when he fell off a trampoline the night before the family was supposed to leave for Orange Beach on a fishing vacation. "All he wants to do is go fishing," said his father, Austin. "Even when we're here at weigh-in, he's begging me to take him fishing."

Congrats Jamo! ... Today marked the high school graduation for a special young man. Jamie Boulanger graduated from Norton High School in Norton, Mass. Boulanger, who is commonly referred to as Jamo, has a rare immune-system problem that has led at various times to the complete failure of one or more of his major organ systems. Needless to say, the problem is very serious, and Jamo has had numerous near-death experiences. His stepfather, pro Mark Burgess, who has been extremely supportive despite trying times, wanted to be with him on his special day, but was preoccupied with the FLW Series event. So today, with the help of weighmaster Chris Jones and the Gallatin community, Jamo received a big congratulation via FLW Live. Hustle home for the graduation party, dad!

Quick numbers:

4-8: Lead, in pounds and ounces, that No. 1 pro Sam Lashlee has over No. 2 Michael Brown.

9-2: Pounds and ounces separating Lashlee and No. 10 pro and fellow local Gary Clouse.

5: Number of co-anglers who failed to catch a keeper-sized bass during the three-day opening round.

Pro Art Berry caught Friday15-11: Pounds and ounces of No. 9 pro Art Berry's five-bass limit on day three.

5-13: Pounds and ounces of Berry's kicker fish.

1: Margin of victory, in pounds, of co-angler Randy Duncan over Ben Broughton.

Sound bites:

"He's an idiot. I'm not sure what his problem is. He should stick to fishing." - Pro Craig Powers, playfully referring to David Dudley trash-talking about his hoops game.

Jacob Powroznik eagerly waits to find out his day-three total. One of the last anglers to weigh in, Powroznik bumped out good friend David Dudley with five that weighed 12-12."I can't believe he sold me out. It is all right though; I just knocked him out of the top 10." - Jacob Powroznik, who was blamed by Dudley for the basketball defeat. Ironically, Powroznik was one of the last pros to weigh in, finishing in eighth place. Dudley finished 11th.

"It's a good lake; I just couldn't find enough fish that were dumb enough to bite." - Pro Ray Scheide.

"The last 40 minutes they were eating the Chug Bug like you wouldn't believe." - Pro David Mansue.

"I'm getting sick and tired of contributing to Larry Nixon's retirement fund." - Pro Frank Lannom, who ended the tournament in 42nd and earned $10,000 himself.

"If somebody weighs in more than me, I'm going to throw him off the stage." - Co-angler champion Randy Duncan, while onstage and on the phone with his wife.

Tomorrow's takeoff is scheduled to take place at 6 a.m. Central time at Bull Creek Marina, located just off Highway 109 on Odoms Bend Road in Gallatin.

Tags: brett-carlson  quick-bites  2006-05-31-old-hickory-lake 

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