UPCOMING EVENT: TOYOTA SERIES - 2020 - Lake Erie

Elias on his way

Elias on his way
Paul Elias' Alabama Rig scores again.

GUNTERSVILLE, Ala. - While the cat is out of the bag on the Alabama rig, nobody is fishing it more effectively than Paul Elias. In what was widely considered a tough bite coming in, Elias has shocked the world with 15 giant Lake Guntersville bass and is one day away from clinching his second Walmart FLW Tour win.

After putting the pieces together late in practice, Elias' biggest concern was that other fishermen would crowd him out. And after an hour and a half fog delay Saturday morning, Elias' fears grew. But he had Another look at Paul Eliasno problems getting on his spot and has received the utmost respect. While his areas were crowded, most just wanted to witness the offshore master and his newfangled bait in action.

"This Alabama rig I'm throwing is crazy," Elias said. "A lot more guys were throwing it today than were the first two days. It's obvious by the weights. A bait comes along every now and then that makes a lot of sense that the fish haven't seen. That's what is happening here and it's incredible."

The Alabama rig consists of a hard-bait body that trails five wires that have a swivel attached to the end of each wire. Elias is using swimbaits on the five wires, which fan out and mimic a school of baitfish. The Laurel, Miss., pro uses the rig at three different spots, all of which are similar in terms of depth and structure. The fish he's been targeting are suspending off the bottom.

"Most of the schools are 4 to 5 feet off. They will not bite it on the bottom. I think the majority of the fish in this lake are suspending; that's why most everyone struggled early on."

Elias said the key is counting he rig down with a precise cadence. Pro leader Paul Elias continues to catch huge bass out deep with an Alabama rig.

"I've tried other stuff, but it just wasn't working. I've been a structure fisherman my whole career and I've always struggled when they suspend, until now."'

With a 15-pound lead, it's conceivable that Elias could sleep in tomorrow and still walk away with victory. Conversely, he also has a shot to break Brandon McMillan's FLW Tour weight record.

"This is fishing so you never know. But I feel good about it. I feel like I can catch a good bag again tomorrow.

"This is one awesome lake. I've had some great Octobers on this lake and I've been wanting a win on it for a very long time."

Behrle second

Second-place pro Robert Behrle caught a 24-pound, 3-ounce limit Saturday.Second-place pro Bob Behrle has improved his weight each day of the tournament. Today he sacked an amazing 24-pound, 3-ounce limit. But somehow he continues to lose ground on Elias.

"That's probably as good as I can do," Behrle said after weighing in his catch. "I caught that 7-pounder on my very last cast of the day."

Behrle was really worried the fog delay would hurt him because he's been averaging only eight bites per day.

While he's been sampling a shallow bank, he's mostly fishing offshore. But he only has one offshore spot - a flat off a ledge in approximately 15 to 25 feet of water that's close to the state park.

"There's definitely a sweet spot on the flat. There's some stumps on a hump and I caught my two biggest fish off it today."

The Hoover, Ala., pro continues to use the Alabama rig with homemade baits. His total weight for three days is 64 pounds, 15 ounces.

"I'm afraid Mr. Elias has got them and he's going to continue to get them tomorrow. My battle is for second and I was able to improve that by 4 or 5 pounds."

Morrow retains third

Third-place pro Troy Morrow holds up part of his day-three catch.For two days, Troy Morrow had been the one pro to have success offshore with traditional ledge fare like crankbaits and spoons. But today at about 1 p.m., he caved and tried the Alabama rig.

"On my third cast I had a double and I was able to finish my limit with it," he said.

Overall, Morrow described the bite as slow and said that his primary offshore spot let him down. He'll start the final day with his tried and true baits, but won't hesitate to switch to the A-rig. Either way, he'll continue to avoid the grass and instead focus on bait.

"I was just happy to temporarily knock Paul out of the lead, even if it was just for a few minutes."

Morrow's day-three stringer weighed 19 pounds, 6 ounces, brining his combined weight to 59 pounds, 4 ounces.

Powroznik fourth

Jacob PowroznikFourth-place pro Jacob Powroznik claims he was one of the first to discover the effectiveness of the Alabama rig this week. Today he used it to catch a 17-pound, 10-ounce limit.

"It all started when I told Koby (Kreiger) to come over to my Rat-L-Trap spot," Powroznik explained. "He caught a 3-pounder right away with it on his first cast and then a limit in about 15 minutes. After that, we told Gags (Anthony Gagliardi), Luke (Clausen), and (Bryan) Thrift."

Not coincidentally, four of the five made the final cut. Powroznik is fishing his A-rig on little drops inside pockets where the shad are funneling in. He works the rig in 4 to 10 feet of water.

"The fish are feeding on shad right now and that rig does a great job of mimicking a school of shad."

The Virginia native puts a 5-inch Hollow Belly swimbait on the middle wire and 3 1/2-inch swimbaits on the four outside wires. He also mixes and matches with colors. The odd-colored swimbait is usually the one they eat for whatever reason.

"I don't really care if I catch another bass tomorrow. The last three days I've had the time of my life. My hands hurt and they're all torn up. It's unbelievable."

Yelas up to fifth

Jay Yelas shows off his 21-8 catch that put him in fifth place on day three.Jay Yelas had tickets to attend the Alabama-Tennessee football game Saturday night with friend and fellow pro Scott Canterbury. But after making the top-10 cutoff, he had to decline and prep tackle for the final day.

Yelas was late to the A-rig party, but he's a big believer now. After catching 11 pounds in his best area with traditional baits, he came back to it today with the A-rig and caught 21 pounds, 8 ounces.

"It's so rare that something new like this comes along and makes such an impact. It's been like magic this week. You never know what other innovations might come off of this. You're throwing five baits at a time, but who is to say it couldn't be more. This thing will be a staple in the tackle box before too long."

Rest of the best

Rounding out the top 10 pros on day three at Lake Guntersville:

6th: Bryan Thrift of Shelby, N.C., 50-15
7th: Russell Lane of Prattville, Ala., 49-15
8th: Anthony Gagliardi of Prosperity, S.C., 49-8
9th: Alex Davis of Albertville, Ala., 47-5
10th: Luke Clausen of Spokane, Wash., 44-7

The final day of the FLW Tour event on Lake Guntersville will begin Sunday at 7 a.m. at the Lake Guntersville Resort State Park located at 7966 Alabama Hwy. 227 in Guntersville, Ala. The final weigh-in will be held at Walmart located at 11697 Hwy. 431 S. in Guntersville beginning at 4 p.m., with the FLW Outdoors Expo opening at noon.

Tags: brett-carlson  headline-story  2011-10-20-lake-guntersville 

Pirowski Flips for Potomac Title

Pirowski Flips for Potomac Title

Boater Alex Pirowski of Occoquan, Virginia, brought a five-bass limit to the scale Saturday weighing 17 pounds, 3 ounces to win the 2020 Phoenix Bass Fishing League presented by T-H Marine event at the Potomac River in Marbury, Maryland. For his victory, Pirowski earned a total of $5,337. READ MORE »

Richmond Wins on Ouachita

Richmond Wins on Ouachita

Boater Russell Richmond of Sheridan, Arkansas, brought three bass to the scale Saturday totaling 11 pounds, 5 ounces to win the 2020 Phoenix Bass Fishing League presented by T-H Marine event at Lake Ouachita in Mount Ida, Arkansas. Richmond topped his nearest competitor, Stephen Browning of Hot Springs, Arkansas, by 1-pound, 1-ounce and earned $4,394 for his victory. READ MORE »

McClain, Drake Take Hoosier Double-Header

McClain, Drake Take Hoosier Double-Header

It was a double-header for bass anglers this past weekend in Bloomington with the Phoenix Bass Fishing League presented by T-H Marine on Lake Monroe events presented by Fish-Intel. FLW, the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, rescheduled the events after the coronavirus pandemic forced the organization to pause competition in mid-March. READ MORE »

Okie Double-Header on Arkansas River

Okie Double-Header on Arkansas River

It was a double-header for bass anglers this past weekend in Muskogee with the Phoenix Bass Fishing League presented by T-H Marine on the Arkansas River events. FLW, the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, rescheduled the events after the coronavirus pandemic forced the organization to pause competition in mid-March. READ MORE »

Losee, Tweite Close out High School Championship

Losee, Tweite Close out High School Championship

The Riceville (Iowa) High School team of Lawson Losee and Kooper Tweite won the 2020 Student Angler Federation High School Fishing National Championship on the Mississippi River out of La Crosse, Wis., with a three-day (three bass per day) total weight of 30 pounds, 4 ounces. Losee and Tweite topped 194 of the top high school teams in the country. READ MORE »

It’s All Wheeler on Chickamauga

It’s All Wheeler on Chickamauga

You’re not going to find a bass angler on a hotter streak right now than Tennessee’s Jacob Wheeler. Prior to this week, the 29-year-old pro had won five multiple-day tournaments since the start of the 2019 season. Today, the No. 1 ranked angler in the world added a sixth victory to his impressive run by dominating the first-ever Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Super Tournament on Lake Chickamauga. Wheeler’s four-day total of 93 pounds, 12 ounces earned him the win by a margin of more than 11 pounds. READ MORE »

Lake Chickamauga Day 4 Coverage

Lake Chickamauga Day 4 Coverage

Complete coverage from the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Super Tournament at Lake Chickamauga June 23-26, 2020. READ MORE »

Losee, Tweite Take Over High School Lead

Losee, Tweite Take Over High School Lead

Lawson Losee and Kooper Tweite of Riceville High School in Riceville, Iowa, have the lead going into the final day of the Student Angler Federation High School Fishing National Championship on the Mississippi River near La Crosse, Wis. Their two-day total of 19 pounds, 2 ounces (three-fish limit per day) has Losee and Tweite 1 pound, 1 ounce ahead of the second-place team. The top 10 teams compete tomorrow for the title.  READ MORE »

Wheeler Crushes 25-12 to Retake Lead

Wheeler Crushes 25-12 to Retake Lead

Day three of the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Super Tournament was another banner day on Chickamauga, but it was a really stupendous day for Jacob Wheeler. Weighing 25-12 with a 10-pounder for a 72-6 total, Wheeler cruised back into the lead with no problem. Heading into the final day, Wheeler has a 4-13 edge over Jason Reyes, who weighed 17-11 and dropped to second with a 62-3 total. READ MORE »

Lake Chickamauga Day 3 Coverage

Lake Chickamauga Day 3 Coverage

Complete coverage from the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Super Tournament at Lake Chickamauga June 23-26, 2020. READ MORE »

Mains, Chapman Lead High School Championship

Mains, Chapman Lead High School Championship

Legacy Christian Academy (Lenexa, Kan.) anglers Ryder Mains and Mason Chapman have the early lead at the Student Angler Federation High School Fishing National Championship on the Mississippi River in La Crosse, Wis. With a three-fish limit worth 11 pounds, 11 ounces, Mains and Chapman lead the second-place team by 1 pound, 9 ounces.  READ MORE »

Reyes Surges Ahead

Reyes Surges Ahead

The big fish bit on day two of the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Super Tournament on Lake Chickamauga. While the first day featured plenty of good fishing, both Jason Reyes and Cole Floyd caught bags that crossed the 25-pound mark on day two. Weighing 27 pounds, 4 ounces, Reyes surged into the lead with a 49-14 total. READ MORE »

High School Championship Under Way at La Crosse

High School Championship Under Way at La Crosse

La Crosse, Wis., has been inundated with bass boats this past week as young anglers pre-fished and boat drivers got them into casting position on the mighty Mississippi for the FLW High School Fishing presented by Favorite National Championship. This three-day lure-slinging event, June 24-26, 2020, is likely to showcase this area’s amazing bass fishery, as well the diversity of techniques that can be used to catch them in early summer.  READ MORE »

Lake Chickamauga Day 2 Coverage

Lake Chickamauga Day 2 Coverage

Complete coverage from the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Super Tournament at Lake Chickamauga June 23-26, 2020. READ MORE »

Wheeler leads with 24-9 on Chick

Wheeler leads with 24-9 on Chick

Day one of the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Super Tournament on Lake Chickamauga featured good fishing with a lot of pressure put on the offshore fish. Making the most of his local knowledge, Jacob Wheeler weighed 24 pounds, 9 ounces to take the lead on day one. Behind him, John Cox weighed in 23-6 for second place. READ MORE »

Lake Chickamauga Day 1 Coverage

Lake Chickamauga Day 1 Coverage

Complete coverage from the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Super Tournament at Lake Chickamauga June 23-26, 2020. READ MORE »

FLW Live Leaderboard - Lake Chickamauga

FLW Live Leaderboard - Lake Chickamauga

FLW marshals and media staff provide unofficial weight estimates for the fourth stop of the 2020 Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit at Lake Martin. READ MORE »

Dixon, Houchin Win on Dardanelle

Dixon, Houchin Win on Dardanelle

Boater Wayne Dixon of Morrilton, Arkansas, brought three bass to the scale totaling 10 pounds, 11 ounces to win Saturday’s event and earn $5,127, but Mabelvale’s Quincy Houchin was the big winner on the weekend. Houchin finished second Saturday – good for $3,139 – then backed it up with a win on Sunday, which earned him the top prize of $12,309, including the lucrative $7,000 FLW PHOENIX Bonus contingency award. READ MORE »

Morgan, Chandler Win on High Rock

Morgan, Chandler Win on High Rock

Boaters Brian Morgan of Sherrills Ford, North Carolina, brought a five-bass limit to the scale weighing 22 pounds even to win Saturday’s event, while Kevin Chandler of New London, North Carolina, brought in a limit weighing 19 pounds, 3 ounces on Sunday to earn the win. Morgan earned $5,511 for his win Saturday, while Chandler won Sunday’s top prize of $4,359. READ MORE »

Bama Division Goes Back-to-Back

Bama Division Goes Back-to-Back

Boaters Jason Nixon of Wetumpka, Alabama, and Byron Smith of Tyrone, Georgia, both brought a five-bass limit to the scale totaling 13 pounds, 10 ounces to tie for the win at Saturday’s event, while Hunter Hayes of Gadsden, Alabama, brought in a limit weighing 14 pounds, 12 ounces on Sunday to earn the win. Nixon and Smith each earned $2,937 for their wins Saturday, while Hayes won Sunday’s top prize of $4,545. READ MORE »