UPCOMING EVENT: PHOENIX BASS FISHING LEAGUE - 2020 - Lake Lanier

Gillespie Claims Co-angler Crown

Gillespie Claims Co-angler Crown
Co-angler champion Carl Gillespie couldn't be happier to hold the trophy in the final event of the season for the Central Division.

LA CROSSE, Wis. – Carl Gillespie of Old Hickory, Tenn., couldn’t have asked for a better week. It seemed hard enough for many of the pros to connect with quality bites, let alone the co-anglers. But Gillespie stayed focused and posted double-digit limits every day of the event en route to his first title as a co-angler.

Gillespie got things rolling with a 10-pound, 8-ounce limit on day one. He backed it up with 10-7 on day two and brought in his largest limit of the week today worth 11-10 to claim the title.

“It still hasn’t sunk in yet,” said Gillespie. “This is my very first top 10 and my very first win. All I wanted to do was make the championship this year, but this feels great.”

Co-angler Carl Gillespie posted consistent catches all week with quality fish like this one to grab the title.Gillespie credits his success this week with spending extensive time on river impoundments back home learning how relate to structure in current.

He threw a ½-ounce Hoppy’s Shellcracker football jig tipped with a Go2 Baits craw to catch every fish he weighed. The craw trailer floats in a defense position which Gillespie thinks helped trigger bites. He fished the jig on 15-pound fluorocarbon on an All Pro Rod APX 7’6” flipping rod.

“The key for me was to drag the bait across the bottom. If I hopped it I wouldn’t get bit. You lose a few more fish dragging a jig but that’s how it goes.”

According to Gillespie, 99 percent of his fish he caught this week were largemouth.

“I used to fish as a pro years ago. I had to get out of it but I’m trying to make my way back. Hopefully this season is a stepping stone for me to do that.

“I still don’t think it has set in yet for me. I’m just tickled to even be in this position.”

Gillespie can begin his journey back to the front of the boat in his new Ranger Z117 with a 90 horsepower outboard the he gets for taking the title.

2nd place – Craig Fanning – 31 pounds, 3 ounces

Co-angler Craig Fanning slides up to second place with a 10-pound, 6-ounce limit on the final day.Mixing things was the deal for Craig Fanning of Elwood, Ill., who climbed to second place with a three-day total weight of 31-3.

The only downfall for Fanning this week was coming short of a limit on day one. Other than that he fished solid.

“It really hurt me not catching a limit on the first day,” said Fanning. “I couldn’t be happier with how everything else went for me this week, though.”

Fanning fished with Gary Yamamoto on the final day and credits him for giving him the opportunities to catch fish.

It was a three pronged approach from Fanning on the river this week. A Yamamoto Senko, Lethal Weapon Swim Jig and Zoom Baby Brush Hog all produced given the tough conditions. The Baby Brush Hog did the most damage for Fanning. He fished it on a Texas rig with a ¼-ounce weight.

“I definitely had to fish a lot slower than my boaters this week. I’d say the other big thing was making sure I hit every target I could.”

Rest of the best

Co-angler Kevin Mahlke makes his first top 10 this week on the Mississippi River and claimed the third-place position.3rd place – Kevin Mahlke – 29 pounds, 4 ounces

4th place – Terry Holsapple – 28 pounds, 15 ounces

5th place – Lajos Draviczki – 28 pounds, 13 ounces

6th place – Jason Swanson – 27 pounds, 14 ounces

7th place – Bob Bryne – 26 pounds, 8 ounces

8th place – Ronnie Shephard Jr. – 25 pounds

9th place – Troy Lowery – 24 pounds, 2 ounces

10th place – Michael Ratz – 22 pounds, 8 ounces

Complete co-angler results can be found by clicking here.

Tags: kyle-wood  co-angler-headline  2014-09-18-mississippi-river-la-crosse 

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