UPCOMING EVENT: PHOENIX BASS FISHING LEAGUE - 2020 - Sam Rayburn Reservoir

Dodson gets it done

Dodson gets it done
After leading since day one, Arkansas pro Robbie Dodson sealed the deal with an EverStart Central win on Table Rock Lake.

KIMBERLING CITY, Mo. - It wasn't fancy, but it was efficient - a pure example of substance over style and function over form. That's a fair summation of Robbie Dodson's win at the EverStart Series Central Division tournament on Table Rock Lake.

Don't worry, we're not selling the Harrison, Ark., pro short. He was quick to admit that this White River impoundment had him scratching his head for three days.

"I've fished Table Rock probably 30-something years, and I have never seen it like it is right now," Dodson said. "You cannot go back to a place and in any way pattern a fish."

Much of the confusion and frustration that Dodson and his fellow competitors experienced can beOn day three, Robbie Dodson used a combination of lures that included a spinnerbait, shallow diving crankbait, a spoon and a jig. traced back to the simple fact that Table Rock was in a profound and prolonged state of transition. The calendar said the first day of fall occurred in late September, but unseasonably warm weather has been impeding the traditional changes that the fish want to undertake. The general result was a lake full of scattered fish.

Now, normally, it's tough to define a victory by one statistic. However, in a tournament that saw anglers struggling to find some form of consistency, Dodson's winning performance came down to this stat - he was the only angler to bag five-bass limits all three days. In the first round, he sacked up 15 pounds and took the early lead. He added 12-2 a day later and maintained his lead. Today, his five fish weighed 10-4 and pushed his winning total to 37-6, good enough for first place and $24,133 plus a Ranger boat, motor and trailer.

On day one, Dodson ran up one of the Lake's creek arms and caught fish on a Luck "E" Strike spinnerbait and a Luck "E" Strike square-bill crankbait. Lacking any solid patterns, he ended up working through about 100 spots to find his keepers.

Robbie Dodson was the only top-10 angler to catch a limit all three days.The next day, Dodson decided to lay off the creek fish and stay closer to the takeoff site. Again, anything close to a discernible pattern eluded him, and it took some 150 spots to produce a limit.

"I fished back down in the lake, and I couldn't catch (a bass)," Dodson said. "Finally, I caught one fish pretty shallow on a boat dock, and I ended up catching six keepers that day on a 5/16-ounce jig with a Baby Guido Bug on the back. I just fished really hard and got those six keepers."

Day three found Dodson returning to the creek habitat, where he caught a keeper early on a spinnerbait. He'd go without a bite until about 10 a.m., at which time he pushed farther into the creek and found three local boats sitting on the site of his day-one fish.

"I started in behind them and fished, fished, fished and finally caught one keeper on the square-bill crankbait," Dodson said. "I said, `This isn't going to work,' so I came back down and started flipping a spoon and a jig on boat docks and got a limit."

Murphy remains at second

Tom Murphy of Richland, Mo., made a strong run at the top spot, but ended up in second place withFocusing on docks, Tom Murphy held on to finish in second place. 34-2 and a check for $8,274. Despite coming up short, he said that a high finish was particularly special in this venue.

"This lake is really near and dear to my heart," he said. "I won my first bass boat here in 1993, and right after that I was put on the Ranger pro staff. I'm very fond of this lake. It fished tough, but I still love it."

Murphy said he targeted fish in deep water - up to 60 feet - and caught his fish on shaky heads with Zoom forktail worms, a War Eagle spoon and a Dixie Jet spoon.

"White was my primary spoon color, but when the fish were schooling and they'd come to the surface, I could throw the silver one out there and just let it free-fall down through the fish and catch them every time," Murphy said.

Several areas of boat docks were off limits, per U.S. Army Corps of Engineers regulations, but Murphy was discerning with those that were open for fishing. On each slip he fished, he found a patient and thorough approach most rewarding.

"I had to find the deeper slips on the shaded side," he said. "I'd let this spoon go all the way down to 45, 55 and 65 feet. If they wouldn't hit it on the way down, as soon as it hit the bottom and I popped it up, they'd nail it."

Bohannan blasts into third

Nabbing the biggest sack of day three, Pop-Tarts pro Greg Bohannan jumped from ninth place to third. Greg Bohannan of Roger, Ark., was Captain Comeback at Table Rock. On day one, he found only two keepers for 5 pounds, 10 ounces and landed in 26th place. A day later, the Kellogg's Pop-Tarts pro came charging back with 11-13 and earned a final-round berth in ninth place. On day three, Bohannan put the exclamation point on his statement by sacking up 13-9 - the day's heaviest catch - and jumping up to third place with a total of 31 pounds worth $6,895.

"I really shot myself in the foot the first day," he said. "But after having trouble the first day, I decided I'm going to fish my strength, so I put a crankbait in my hand. I love throwing a hand-painted Fall Creek Wiggle Wart."

A motor problem handicapped Bohannan today, but he made the most of what he could do and obviously fared well.

"I had a spark plug go bad in my engine, and I couldn't run very fast, so I just chased the wind today. Wherever the wind was, that's where I fished. It didn't matter if it was a bluff or a flat point; I just burned up the trolling motor today. I had that Minn Kota on 70 to 80 percent all day and just covered a lot of water."

Bohannan fished his crankbait on a 7-foot medium-action rod with a 6.3:1 Abu-Garcia reel carrying 10-pound 100-percent Berkley fluorocarbon.A strong day-three performance moved Lance Williams up from 10th place to fifth on day three.

Williams winds up in fourth

Lance Williams of Billings, Mo., took fifth place on day one with 11-2, slipped to 10th on day two with a weight of 6-5 and today bounced back with the day's second biggest sack - a limit that weighed 12-10 - and finished fourth with 30-1. He earned $6,206.

Williams caught his day-one fish on a Strike King 5XD in main-lake pockets with gravel and chunk rock. Day two saw that deal dry up for him, and he found only three keepers.

"Today, I went back to main-lake (spots) and caught one on a spinnerbait early," Williams said. "I knew if I had any chance today, I needed to catch one big fish, so I went up to one of my summer spots and caught my biggest fish on a Jewel football jig."

Despite a late start, Matt Jones still improved to fifth place on day three.Williams then switched to a Strike King 6XD and bagged three more keepers to finish out his limit.

Jones finishes fifth

Fate dealt a potentially devastating blow to Matthew Jones of Spokane, Mo., on his way to the final day's takeoff. A routine traffic stop turned into a paperwork nightmare that ended up robbing him of nearly three hours on the water. The mental and emotional toll was unavoidable, but Jones kept his cool, went to work and salvaged the day with a respectable showing of three fish for 6-2 and a fifth-place total of 24-8 worth $5,516.

"I was a little depressed, but I made one cast with a Luck `E' Strike BDS3 crankbait (Tennessee-shad color) and caught two keepers - one on the front hook and one on the back hook," he said. "So that got me going, and I finally caught one more keeper on a spinnerbait."

Best of the rest

Rounding out the top 10 pro leaders at the EverStart Series Table Rock Lake event:

6th: Earl K. Garrison IV of Bull Shoals, Ark., 24-1
7th: Scott Nelson of Lake Ozark, Mo., 23-12
8th: Zach King of Clarksville, Ark., 22-7
9th: Chris Hughes of Springfield, Mo., 22-7
10th: Randall Hutson of Washburn, Mo., 21-3

Tags: david-a-brown  headline-story  2011-10-06-table-rock-lake 

Miller Wins Wild Card on Kentucky Lake

Miller Wins Wild Card on Kentucky Lake

Weighing limits of 15 pounds, 13 ounces on day one and 15-3 on day two, Michael Miller of Greenville, S.C., overcame a tough-fishing Kentucky Lake to win the T-H Marine Bass Fishing League (BFL) Wild Card and qualify for the All-American. READ MORE »

Coastal Carolina Wins on Hartwell  

Coastal Carolina Wins on Hartwell  

The Coastal Carolina University duo of Max McQuaide of Tyngsborough, Mass., and Grant Tattersall, of Conway, S.C., won the YETI FLW College Fishing tournament at Lake Hartwell presented by Costa with a five-bass limit weighing 13 pounds, 11 ounces. The victory earned the Chanticleers’ bass club $2,000 and a slot in the 2020 FLW College Fishing National Championship. READ MORE »

Allison Comes from Behind on Cumberland

Allison Comes from Behind on Cumberland

By catching four quality smallmouth bass on the final day of the Costa FLW Series Championship on Lake Cumberland, Missourian Chad Allison was able to come back from 10th place and win the co-angler division, earning more than $30,000. READ MORE »

Upshaw Closes on Cumberland

Upshaw Closes on Cumberland

For the second time this season, Andrew Upshaw is an FLW champion thanks to consistent days spent targeting big Southern smallmouths. The Tulsa, Okla., pro won the 2019 Costa FLW Series Championship on Lake Cumberland in Burnside, Ky., with a three-day total weight of 42 pounds, 15 ounces. The win comes less than seven months after Upshaw won the FLW Tour event on Cherokee Lake in east Tennessee. READ MORE »

FLW Live Leaderboard - Lake Cumberland

FLW Live Leaderboard - Lake Cumberland

FLW media staff provides unofficial weight estimates for the 2019 Costa FLW Series Championship on Lake Cumberland READ MORE »

Cumberland Day 3 Coverage

Cumberland Day 3 Coverage

Andrew Upshaw continues to roll on Cumberland. READ MORE »

Upshaw Moves Ahead at Cumberland

Upshaw Moves Ahead at Cumberland

Day two of the Costa FLW Series Championship on Lake Cumberland was a bit tougher for some, given the post-frontal conditions featuring lighter winds, sun and cold temperatures. As projected, consistency has been the key and Andrew Upshaw continued to dial in his program adding 15 pounds, 1 ounce to his day-one bag of 14-15 for a total of 30 pounds even. READ MORE »

Cumberland Day 2 Coverage

Cumberland Day 2 Coverage

Day one of the Costa FLW Series Championship proved to be about as challenging as many anglers anticipated after a tough practice period, but it wasn’t all bad. Zimbabwe’s Roger Cousens certainly wasn’t complaining. His tournament-leading 17-pound, 2-ounce bag was exactly what he had hoped for as the tournament kicked off, and he’s gunning for another big stringer today. READ MORE »

Zimbabwe’s Cousens Grabs Lead

Zimbabwe’s Cousens Grabs Lead

The FLW International Division is well represented in the Costa FLW Series Championship, and perhaps none represented the division better than Roger Cousens of Zimbabwe, who didn’t seem bothered by the stingy conditions of Lake Cumberland on day one. With the only bag that topped 17 pounds for the day (17-2), Cousens enters day two with a 3-ounce lead over Robert Nakatomi, who qualified from the Western Division. READ MORE »

Cumberland Day 1 Coverage

Cumberland Day 1 Coverage

With rain early and a cold snap forecasted to move in this afternoon, the first day of the Costa FLW Series Championship on Lake Cumberland could present some unique challenges for the 193-boat field, especially after a fairly mild and pleasant practice period.  READ MORE »

Fitzpatrick All the Way on Grand

Fitzpatrick All the Way on Grand

Roger Fitzpatrick has had quite a fall fishing season. He won the BFL Super Tournament on Lake of the Ozarks in September, then qualified for the All-American by winning the BFL Regional on Grand Lake in October. READ MORE »

Drury Wins on Lake of the Ozarks

Drury Wins on Lake of the Ozarks

The Drury University duo of Cole Breeden of Eldridge, Missouri and Cameron Smith, of Nixa, Missouri, won the YETI FLW College Fishing event on Lake of the Ozarks presented by Bass Pro Shops with a five-bass limit weighing 18 pounds, 9 ounces. The victory earned the Panthers’ bass club $2,650 and a slot in the 2020 FLW College Fishing National Championship. READ MORE »

Myers Makes Long Run for Kentucky Win

Myers Makes Long Run for Kentucky Win

Mark Myers of Cedar Falls, Iowa, is no stranger to the victory circle with FLW, having previously won a BFL as a boater to go with two FLW Tour victories as a co-angler and two more as a co-angler in Costa FLW Series competition. But, his latest win at the T-H Marine Bass Fishing League (BFL) Regional on Kentucky and Barkley Lakes is the realization of his long-time goal to qualify for the All-American. READ MORE »

Beavers Wins Potomac Regional

Beavers Wins Potomac Regional

A severe storm backed up the tides and drained many of the best areas on the Potomac. Adjusting to the unusual conditions and grinding out daily limits were the keys to success in the BFL Regional. READ MORE »

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 »