UPCOMING EVENT: Costa FLW Series - 2019 - Lake Champlain

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

Gagliardi’s good timing delivers Champlain lead

Gagliardi’s good timing delivers Champlain lead
Chevy pro Anthony Gagliardi stayed near the bait schools today and took over the top spot.

PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. - It's standard party politics - you'll enjoy more interaction if you hang out by the food. That's basically what Anthony Gagliardi did to take over the lead at the FLW Series Eastern Division event on Lake Champlain.

Fishing a grass flat in the lake's north end, the Properity, S.C., angler fished tubes and other soft plastics along the bottom. Most of his action came in 10 to 13 feet of water.

"I'm not doing anything differently than a lot of (the other competitors)," Gagliardi said. "I just think I have a good area with some quality fish. They're just moving in every so often to feed, and if you're there when those fish start feeding, you can catch a couple of nice fish."

Gagliardi said the key element of the spot he fished is an abundance of forage. Multiple species shows off his fish for the cameras." border="1" align="right" /> apparently gave the fish options and that kept them interested.

"My spot has the right bait that the fish in this area are focusing on. There are some shiners and shad in addition to the yellow perch. That might be why it's a little bit better than some areas, because there are several different kinds of bait there."

On a day that saw big west winds roiling exposed sections of Lake Champlain, Gagliardi said he was happy to have gotten things moving early. He had a decent limit by about 9 o'clock and then culled three times afterward.

"I had the majority of my weight before the wind picked up, so it really didn't affect most of my day," Gagliardi said. "It started blowing early this morning, then it slicked off with almost no wind. It started blowing again around midday, and it's been blowing pretty good ever since then."

Gagliardi said the relief of sacking up an early limit put his day on a comfortable pace. "I don't know that Sticking to his trusted spot, day one leader Jason Ober caught a good limit, but slipped to second.I could have expected anything else. I caught a quick limit with a couple of nice fish, and I had most of my weight by 12. I spent the rest of the day trying to catch a big one. I ended up catching a 4 1/2-pounder that culled out and gave me another pound and a half."

While the wind presented little challenge, Gagliardi said he had to remain diligent to protect his key spot - even at the expense of sacrificing further expansion.

"I've been crowded by so many boats, I haven't been able to explore the area," he said. "I've had to fend everybody off from where I'm catching my fish. I'd like to have the luxury to move around because I think I could catch fish not just in that one specific spot."

Ober slips to second

After tying with David Wolak for the day-one lead, Johnstown, Pa., pro Jason Ober caught a limit of 17-7 that paired with his previous weight of 21-2 for a 38-9 total that moved him back a notch to second.

Ober, who won the 2008 American Fishing Series event on Lake Champlain, returned to the north-end flat he fished on day one. He stuck with the drop-shot all day and found his best results with a 3-inch Attrax cut-tail worm in watermelon-red.

Today, he said, started heavy on quantity, but light on quality. "I had a limit by 8:30 this morningShinichi Fukae repeated his day one weight of 18-12 and moved up nine spots to third. (whereas) I didn't catch a fish until 8:30 yesterday morning. It took me a long time to upgrade today, but once I got my last one, I made the decision to go. They were still biting, but I don't know how many are there."

Ober said he thinks the day's increasing wind worked in his favor. The spot he's fishing is bulging with yellow perch. That's a good thing in terms of locating the predators that won't overlook such a buffet. However, the perch constantly peck at drop-shot baits and that can lead to complacency - ignoring a light bass bite that resembles a perch nibble.

"The perch are driving me nuts because I get bit on every cast," he said. "I think the wind blew so hard it just scattered everything."

Fukae makes big move into third

Shin Fukae of Palestine, Texas, moved up nine spots from 12th to third on day two by matching his day-Working with the time restrictions of an early flight, Dave Wolak struggled on day two and dropped to fourth.one weight of 18-12 with an identical sack and earning a 37-8 total.

Fukae caught his fish by drop-shotting a green-pumpkin Gary Yamamoto Shad Shape Worm. He fished in 20 to 40 feet of water, where the day's strong winds had no effect on his fish.

Marking schools of small baitfish was essential to Fukae's strategy. "I just found the bait with my depth finder, and the fish were around the bait. I got my weight by about 9 o'clock, and then I just practiced around the area for tomorrow."

Short day drops Wolak to fourth

Wake Forest, N.C., pro David Wolak caught a limit of 16-2 and ended up with a 37-4 total. Hampered by the short day of an early-flight schedule, Wolak said he struggled to establish consistency today and then had to wrap up just as an afternoon bite was developing.

"The earlier flight didn't help me, but the weather was weird today," Wolak noted. "It seemed like it wasSticking to his largemouth skills, Dion Hibdon moved up to fifth place. going to rain, and then the sun would pop out. I couldn't really get into a groove of what to do.

"I fished new water today because I caught one nice fish - a 4-pounder - on my spot from yesterday, and then there was nothing. I was struggling to get a limit for a while. It was 10 o'clock before I even caught a limit, and three of those were 12-inchers. I kind of got into a groove this afternoon, and then I had to go in."

Wolak mainly fished a homemade ChatterBait-style lure fashioned from a green-pumpkin Arkie Jig with an orange throat.

Hibdon flips into fifth

Building on his day-one weight of 19-1, Dion Hibdon of Stover, Mo., added 17-12 on day two for a 36-13 total. Flipping a jig, Hibdon put together a solid sack of green fish that required a day of many moves.

"I probably fished 40 to 50 spots today," he said. "I'm moving around a lot, keeping the jig wet and fishing for big ones."

Best of the rest

Rounding out the top 10 pro leaders at the FLW Series Lake Champlain event:

6th: Michael Wolfenden of Warwick, R.I., 36-3
7th: Steve Lucarelli of Meredith, N.H., 35-5
8th: Lancen Halbert of Enoree, S.C., 35-4
9th: Michael Murphy of Gilbert, S.C., 35-4
10th: Scott Parker or Londonderry, N.H., 35-3

Kinney-Hermes tops co-angler field

Chris Kinney-Hermes of Champlain, N.Y., held on to his lead in the Co-angler Division by sacking up a limit Moving to a heavier weight helped Chris Kinney-Hermes retain his co-angler lead.that weighed 15-5. Adding that to his day-one weight of 18-15 gave him a 34-4 total and a 1-pound, 11-ounce lead.

Drop-shotting Yamamoto flat worms and 5-inch Senkos cut down to 3 inches, Kinney Hermes adjusted his rig to suit the conditions. "All I did for the wind was add more weight so I could hold (my rig) better and feel it better on the bottom. I went from a ¼- to a 1/2-ounce. It's not that big of a difference, but in the waves, it makes a difference."

A graduate of SUNY-Plattsburgh and a former FLW National Guard College Fishing competitor, Kinney-Hermes said his day demanded patience and persistence.

"I didn't get bit until about 12:30, so it was a little rough this morning - I was sweating it a little bit," he said. "I didn't have a limit until 1:30. It was dry for a while, and then I culled a couple."

Best of the rest

Christopher Hall of Clarks Summit, Pa., placed second with 32-9, while Tony Bushey of Champlain, N.Y., took third with 31-12. Fourth place went to Jerry Vashina of Mcungie, Pa., who tallied 31-11, and Chester Williams of Shavertown, Pa., was fifth with 31-2.

Rounding out the top 10 co-angler leaders at the FLW Series Lake Champlain event:

6th: Jerry Knier of Muncy, Pa., 28-6
7th: Patrick Bone of Cleveland, Ga., 28-1
8th: Michael McGhee of Blackstone, Va., 27-15
9th: Edward Pecore of Plattsburgh, N.Y., 27-7
10th: Mike Casada of Stearns, Ky., 27-7

Day three of FLW Series action on Lake Champlain continues at Friday's takeoff, scheduled to take place at 6:30 a.m. PT at Dock Street Landing located at 5 Dock Street in Plattsburgh.

Tags: david-a-brown  headline-story  2010-08-25-lake-champlain 

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