UPCOMING EVENT: T-H Marine BFL - 2019 - Kentucky / Barkley Lake

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

Eight over 30 equals Falcon feast

Eight over 30 equals Falcon feast
Pro leader Richard Cathey holds up part of his 39-pound, 1-ounce stringer.

ZAPATA, Texas - September rainfall has dramatically changed the fishing on Falcon Lake. The bushes that produced at last year's Stren Series Texas Division event are now submerged and hidden. Productive stretches of bank once used for spawning are now considered deep ledges. Amid all this change, there is one constant - Falcon Lake is loaded with giant largemouth bass.

Just as predicted, the high water frustrated some anglers. Only 111 pros and 38 co-anglers registered five-bass limits. A 20-pound limit last year would have put a pro in 66th place. This year, a 20-pound limit puts a pro in 43rd.

But there is a select group of fishermen that has identified key areas. Within theses areas, huge prespawn bass are grouped up, and a 30-pound limit can be caught in a hurry. Capitalizing on one of these schools was Rick Cathey, who on Thursday caught the second-heaviest limit in FLW Outdoors history - five bass weighing a staggering 39 pounds, 1 ounce. The only heavier single-day catch came from Greg Hackney (39-8), not surprisingly on this very lake two months ago.

Although Cathey lives in San Antonio, Texas, he owns and operates the Fish Texas Guide Service and spends approximately six to 10 days a month guiding on Falcon. He's fished the Walmart BFL in the past, but this is his first Stren Series event.

"This is kind of what I expected," Cathey said of his day-one catch. "That's not so much me; it's more of a reflection of the lake."

Cathey has discovered five productive areas located in a quarter section of the lake - one of which he calls his big-fish spot. All of these spots hold prespawn bass, and the pro leader is pitching and dragging to entice strikes.

"You're either really, really on them, or you're really, really not. The ones we are catching are quality, but we aren't catching a ton."

To this point, Cathey culled only three times. His smallest fish weighed just less than 7 pounds, and his largest went 9-3. Oddly enough, all of these fish were boated without the aid of a net.

It sounds unbelievable, but Cathey caught a 56-pound limit on Falcon last week while guiding. In that trip, he managed seven fish over 10 pounds. For those that want to see what a five-bass limit of 56 pounds looks like, visit www.rickcathey.com. Once the Stren Series event concludes, the pro leader will upload both photos and video of his astonishing 56-pound catch.

With nearly a 6-pound lead, Cathey is just looking to be consistent tomorrow.

"If I can catch 25 pounds, I think I'll be happy."

Haralson second with 33-11

ICharles Haralson is in second place in the Pro Division with a limit Thursday that went 33-11.n second place is Laredo, Texas, pro Charles Haralson, another angler who frequently guides on Falcon Lake. Haralson finished fourth at last year's season-opening Texas Division event. Unlike Cathey, who works in the pharmaceutical field, Haralson guides full time with Bassin on the Border and spends approximately 250 days a year on Falcon.

On day one, he calmly caught 33-11, nearly all of which were identical 7-pounders. Haralson is recognized as one of the most knowledgeable fishermen in southern Texas and has won several fully rigged bass boats from fishing local tournaments.

"I didn't really know what I could catch," he said. "I haven't been catching them in practice - I've just been looking for them. But overall, I'm pleased."

Like Cathey, Haralson is fishing deep and slow, as he probes for prespawn largemouths.

"We were done fishing at 8:30 this morning. I culled two 5-pounders, and then I decided I was done. You've got to manage what you have. If I get beat, I get beat. But nobody can beat me on the first day."

If Haralson reaches 30 pounds early tomorrow, he will again quit fishing. During the opening round, 30 pounds each day is his benchmark. If he makes it to Saturday's final round, he will try to catch everything he can.

"All of those fish came out of one spot. This morning the bite was on, and we just had a blast. I tried to relax for a second, and I realized I was shaking."

Schoonveld third

Pro Dan Schoonveld, a Texas Division veteran from Mansura, La., caught a limit weighing 33 pounds, Third-place pro Dan Schoonveld holds up a Falcon Lake kicker bass.9 ounces for third place. Like Haralson, Schoonveld had a stringer in which every fish was nearly identical in size. His biggest bass weighed 8 pounds, 4 ounces, which was caught on a soft-plastic bait.

"We quit fishing at 10 a.m. and sat there all day until weigh-in," said Schoonveld, who also guides in the area. "The fish are everywhere right now - from the bank all the way back to 30 feet. But the bank fish are getting pressured real hard."

Not only did Schoonveld manage an incredible catch, his co-angler reeled in 31 pounds, 9 pounces. Clearly, the third-place pro is around tournament-winning bass.

"I just hope I get some respect tomorrow. I just put on a clinic this morning, and about four other boats saw me. The fishing is really good right now, but in another week it's going to be unbelievable. A week later and we would have broken every record there is."

Le rides a hot streak

Fresh off a second-place finish at the Clarks Hill FLW Series BP Eastern Division event and a head-to-Pro Than Le is in fourth place after catching 31 pounds, 4 ounces Thursday.head victory at the East-West Fish-Off, Than Le is back at it. Le is a well-known Western stick and a top performer on the FLW Tour. However, the Arizona pro has never fished a Texas Division event.

"It's true; I came down here for the Fish-Off, and I haven't gone home to Lake Havasu City. I've been fishing every day, and I've found that the deeper and more scattered a tree is, the more productive it is. I've been fishing one spot for over a month, and I've been averaging 25 to 30 pounds a day."

Le believes he is targeting mainly postspawn fish, not prespawn, as he flips bushes. On day one the plan worked to the tune of 31 pounds, 4 ounces.

"With the wind blowing tomorrow, I might not be able to stay on my fish. There's a lot there, but it's all about getting the right ones to bite."

Since Le is not fishing any other Texas Division events, his goal is to take home the title. Maybe then he will finally leave the town of Zapata.

Vining fifth

Gary Vining of Morgan City, La., rounded out the top five in the Pro Division with a limit weighing 29 pounds, 9 ounces.

Rest of the best

Rounding out the top 10 pros after day one on Falcon Lake:

6th: Dicky Newberry of Houston, 29-2
7th: Ray Hanselman of Del Rio, Texas, 28-15
8th: Jerry Green of Cullman, Ala., 28-11
9th: Joe Don Setina of Pittsburg, Texas, 27-15
10th: Robert McFarlane of San Antonio, Texas, 27-3

The Pro Division Big Bass went to Richard Cremo of Laredo, Texas, who caught a 9-pound, 11-ounce giant and earned $450.

Kreuzer crushes co-angler weight record

Co-angler leader Dean Kreuzer holds up two Falcon Lake hogs.Competing in his first Stren Series Texas Division event, Dean Kreuzer of Mesa, Ariz., caught five bass weighing 34 pounds, 3 ounces to lead the Co-angler Division after day one on Falcon. Not only is he leading the tournament, his 34-3 also set the co-angler record for the heaviest single-day catch in FLW Outdoors history.

"My buddy Steve Czerniski and I came down just to give the lake a try," said Kreuzer. "If neither of us makes the cutoff, then we're going to fish the Bass Champs team tournament on Lake Amistad Saturday. Neither of us wanted to be the pro for this event, so we flipped a coin and I ended up as the co-angler."

Kreuzer had an eventful morning, complete with engine problems and big fish.

"Last night I drew Jim Lancaster as my pro partner. On the way down to our first spot, we had motor problems. We eventually got there and kept working a 120-yard stretch of bank, back and forth."

Kreuzer caught eight fish total, but he gave much of the credit to Lancaster.

"It wouldn't have happened without Jim. We get to our spot after a 30-mile run, and he immediately starts making arrangements for getting back. Luckily, Steve (Czerniski) was in the area, and he brought us both in along with our fish."

The Kreuzer family is no stranger to tournament fishing as Dean's wife, Tanya, competes as a professional on the Women's Bassmaster Tour.

"I get to go play this time because I've been hauling her around for three years."

Slate second
Kevin Slate is second in the Co-angler Division after day one with 32 pounds, 6 ounces.
Currently in second place for the co-anglers is Kevin Slate with 32 pounds, 6 ounces. That weight is third among the all-time heaviest single-day catches in company history for a co-angler. Slate, an electrical engineer for Boeing, is fishing in just his second Stren Series season.

"It was a wild day," he said. "At noon I think I had three decent fish. Then I picked up a good one at about 1 p.m., and then at 2 p.m. the big fish hit."

That fish weighed 9 pounds, 10 ounces and would be the last of Slate's day. The Choctaw, Okla., native received only five bites in total, but he certainly made the best of them.

Slate said he worked plastics throughout the water column while fishing with pro Buz Craft.

Pennington third

In third place was Chris Pennington of San Diego with 31 pounds, 9 ounces. His day-one San Diego, Calif., co-angler Chris Pennington is in third place after the first day of competition.stringer is fourth of all time among the co-anglers, just behind Slate. Pennington was partnered with Schoonveld, who guides on Falcon and knows the lake well.

"That was the biggest sack of my life," he gasped. "I flew all the way out here with a buddy just to fish this lake, and believe me, it was worth it. Dan (Schoonveld) was amazing. I just keyed in on what he was doing. It was amazing - you could be five yards off the spot and you don't get anything."

Tomorrow Pennington is paired with Kellogg's pro Jim Tutt.

Rest of the best

Kenneth Pellerin of Pasadena, Texas, placed fourth for the co-anglers with five bass weighing 30 pounds, 7 ounces.

In fifth place is Keith Honeycutt with 26 pounds, 13 ounces. Honeycutt, a Temple, Texas, native, won the 2007 Stren Series Championship in Mobile, Ala., and made the top-10 cutoff at last year's championship on Table Rock Lake.

Rounding out the top 10 co-anglers after day one on Falcon Lake:

6th: Paul England of Brookeland, Texas, 24-6
7th: Allen Wares of Austin, Texas, 23-11
8th: Jimmy Brumfield of Madison, Miss., 23-4
9th: Billy Yelverton of Baton Rouge, La., 22-4
10th: Bennie Anderson of Grand Prairie, Texas, 21-11

Kenneth Wilson caught the Co-angler Division Big Bass. His Falcon monster weighed 10 pounds, 4 ounces and was worth $225.

Day two of Texas Division competition on Falcon Lake begins as the field of 200 boats takes off from the Zapata County Boat Ramp at 7:30 a.m. Central time Friday. Following Friday's weigh-in, the field will be cut to the top 10 pros and top 10 co-anglers.

Tags: brett-carlson  headline-story  2009-01-15-falcon-lake 

New Dominates Seminole Regional

New Dominates Seminole Regional

Belmont, N.C., angler Bryan New, who’s regularly one of FLW’s top performers in the grassroots ranks, had established a dominant pace. New weighed in 22 pounds, 9 ounces on day one and added 20-2 on day two to carry a lead of 6 pounds, 15 ounces into the finals. A roughly 7-pound margin isn’t necessarily a sure thing on Seminole, but the fall bite was a bit slower than what the lake can produce, and it was obvious New was cruising. READ MORE »

Hays Rallies for Ozark Title

Hays Rallies for Ozark Title

The final day of the Costa FLW Series Central Division event on Lake of the Ozarks presented by Evinrude was no walk in the park for the top 10 pros. With a cold front passing through at the start of the event, a high-pressure system settled in for the final round of fishing. While most struggled, Dylan Hays of El Dorado, Ark., sacked up 14 pounds, 6 ounces today – the biggest limit brought in during the final day – and finally was able to wrangle his first FLW title. READ MORE »

Lake of the Ozarks Midday Update – Day 3

Lake of the Ozarks Midday Update – Day 3

The final day of the Costa FLW Series Central Division on Lake of the Ozarks presented by Evinrude is fixing to get fun based on what’s already happened today and what could happen. READ MORE »

Top 5 Patterns from Lake of the Ozarks – Day 2

Top 5 Patterns from Lake of the Ozarks – Day 2

Sure enough, with conditions changing from rain and clouds to sun and wind, the Costa FLW Series Central Division on Lake of the Ozarks, which is presented by Evinrude, has made it tough on guys. Of course, day-two leader James Watson predicted that some of the biggest bags of the event would come in today despite the conditions, and he was right. READ MORE »

Consistency Puts Watson Out Front

Consistency Puts Watson Out Front

Weather has been the storyline leading up to the Costa FLW Series Central Division finale on Lake of the Ozarks presented by Evinrude. With storms and rain blowing through yesterday ahead of a cold front, the cooler weather set in today making fishing tough on some, but others took advantage of the change. READ MORE »

Lake of the Ozarks Midday Update – Day 2

Lake of the Ozarks Midday Update – Day 2

A cold front that brought temperatures in the 40s, rain and wind has the bass in a funk on day two of the Costa FLW Series Central Division event presented by Evinrude on Lake of the Ozarks. READ MORE »

Top 5 Patterns from Lake of the Ozarks – Day 1

Top 5 Patterns from Lake of the Ozarks – Day 1

Even some of the best locals were driving the struggle bus all day trying to find ways to adapt to fish that moved thanks to the heavy storms. Yet, some guys did adapt well, with the best being Ladd Shannon and his 19-pound, 6-ounce tournament-leading bag. READ MORE »

Shannon Leads the Ozark Charge

Shannon Leads the Ozark Charge

After losing over an hour of fishing time due to a massive thunderstorm that rolled through the area early this morning causing a lightning delay, day one of the Costa FLW Series Central Division finale on Lake of the Ozarks looked to be a grinder of an event. The tournament, which is presented by Evinrude, saw plenty of fish catching by midday, but no size to speak of. Ladd Shannon of Atkins, Ark., managed to scrape up a limit worth 19 pounds, 6 ounces by the end of the day and sits in first by 1-11 over FLW pro Greg Bohannan. READ MORE »

Rampey Stays Red Hot on Hartwell

Rampey Stays Red Hot on Hartwell

After winning a T-H Marine Bass Fishing League (BFL) Super Tournament on Lake Hartwell a few weeks ago, Jayme Rampey of Liberty, S.C., was certainly one of the favorites heading into the BFL Regional on the same pond this past weekend. Lo and behold, he wouldn’t disappoint, and notched his 11th career BFL win – five of which have come on Hartwell – and won a Ranger Z518L with a 200-horsepower motor, plus $20,000 cash for his efforts. READ MORE »

Warren Mounts Furious Comeback on Grand

Warren Mounts Furious Comeback on Grand

Curt Warren was a paragon of consistency over three days at Grand Lake, and the result was a victory in the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division finale, presented by T-H Marine. Warren turned in limits of 14-5 on day one and 16-9 on day two, but it was his day-three limit of 15-9 that was the most impressive – no other pro even cracked the 13-pound mark battling the tough post-frontal conditions Grand had to offer on day three. READ MORE »

Top 5 Patterns from Grand Lake - Day 2

Top 5 Patterns from Grand Lake - Day 2

When conditions changed, Cody Bird of Granbury, Texas completely scrapped his day-one pattern, caught a limit that weighed 13-11 and took over the lead of the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division event, presented by T-H Marine, with a two-day total of 32-14. Here’s what the rest of the top five was up to on day two. READ MORE »

Bird Moves Ahead on Grand

Bird Moves Ahead on Grand

After his sizzling day-one pattern fizzled, Cody Bird adjusted his focus to a completely different scenario and sacked up a limit of 13-11 on day two to take over the lead in the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division finale, presented by T-H Marine, with a two day total of 32-14. Going into Saturday’s final round, Bird holds a 7-ounce lead over day-one leader and Grand Lake stick Jason Christie. READ MORE »

Top 5 Patterns from Grand Lake - Day 1

Top 5 Patterns from Grand Lake - Day 1

Jason Christie of Park Hill, Okla., leveraged his intimate understanding of Grand Lake’s tendencies to catch a five-bass limit that weighed 22 pounds, 10 ounces to take the lead on day one of the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division event Presented by T-H Marine. Here are the details of the rest of the top five. READ MORE »

Christie Blasts 22-10 on Grand

Christie Blasts 22-10 on Grand

Oklahoma stick Jason Christie overcame the unsettling effects of a passing cold front to sack up a five-bass limit that weighed 22 pounds, 10 ounces for the day one lead in the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division finale, presented by T-H Marine on Oklahoma’s Grand Lake. READ MORE »

Grand Lake Midday Update - Day 1

Grand Lake Midday Update - Day 1

After several weeks of hot, sunny conditions, anglers launched with cloudy skies, stout winds and air temperatures in the low 60s. By midday, the temperature rose into the mid to upper 60s and the wind started to subside, however, the first couple of hours saw Grand Lake’s temperamental side. READ MORE »

Beavers Focused on Bluebacks

Beavers Focused on Bluebacks

FLW Tour pro Bradford Beavers of Summerville, South Carolina, brought a two-day total of 10 bass to the scale weighing 28 pounds, 1 ounce, to win the two-day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) South Carolina Division super-tournament on Lake Hartwell Sunday. Beavers earned $6,345 for his efforts. READ MORE »

Sac State Wins on the Delta

Sac State Wins on the Delta

The Sacramento State University duo of Ilya Guryanov of West Sacramento and Will Karnthong, of Antioch, California, won the YETI FLW College Fishing event on the California Delta presented by Bass Pro Shops with a five-bass limit weighing 15 pounds, 7 ounces. The victory earned the Hornets’ bass club $2,000 and a slot in the 2020 FLW College Fishing National Championship. READ MORE »

Carolina Rig Carries Lewellen

Carolina Rig Carries Lewellen

Kyle Lewellen of Byhalia, Mississippi, brought a two-day total of 10 bass to the scale weighing 34 pounds, 5 ounces, to win the two-day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Mississippi Division super-tournament on Pickwick Lake Sunday. Lewellen earned $5,690 for his efforts. READ MORE »

Stracner Wins Again, Clinches AOY

Stracner Wins Again, Clinches AOY

Josh Stracner of Vandiver, Alabama, brought a two-day total of 10 bass to the scale weighing 35 pounds, 12 ounces, to win the two-day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Bama Division super-tournament on Lake Eufaula Sunday. Stracner earned $6,694 for his efforts. READ MORE »

Turner Ran Brush on Lanier

Turner Ran Brush on Lanier

Brock Turner of Jasper, Georgia, brought a two-day total of 10 bass to the scale weighing 33 pounds, 7 ounces, to win the two-day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Bulldog Division super-tournament on Lake Lanier Sunday. Turner earned $8,266 for his efforts. READ MORE »