UPCOMING EVENT: PHOENIX BASS FISHING LEAGUE - 2020 - Old Hickory Lake

Topwater Takes Birge to the Top

Topwater Takes Birge to the Top
Zack Birge weighs 17-14 on day two of the Walmart FLW Tour on Smith Lake to take the lead.

Day two of the Walmart FLW Tour event on Lewis Smith Lake presented by Evinrude was some 25 degrees colder than day one. In some areas the water temperature dropped 8 degrees. But the drastic change seemed to have little impact on the predominant patterns from day one. Though the leaderboard shifted a bit, eight of the top 10 pros from day one stayed within the top 10 on day two.

Zack Birge, who is quickly making a name for himself across all FLW levels, moved into the lead on day two with a 17-pound, 14-ounce limit, which gives him a two-day total of 36-13.

For the second day in a row, Birge brought in all largemouths for his limit, though he had to wait them out a bit more today.

“I knew nothing would really happen in there until about noon,” Birge says of his best area. “At 11 o’clock I got my first good bite. Then I caught another one at noon, and another good one an hour after that. The water temperature did drop a few degrees in there overnight, but it gained those degrees back by noon with sunshine. That helped.”

Birge is from Oklahoma, and he is fishing in a classic Okie style – big baits for big bass in shallow flooded bushes.

“I’m using a Santone buzzbait and a frog,” Birge says. “When the sun gets on that stained water, it heats the surface up a few more degrees, and I think those largemouths like to pull up right to the surface to warm up. When something comes by overhead, they clobber it.”

Birge does not believe the largemouths that he’s catching are actually spawning just yet, but are perhaps just a day or two away from doing the deed.

“I can see them in there swimming around,” he says. “It’s not really spawning behavior, but they are close.”

Birge has three or four areas that have the right ingredients of shallow, stained water and bushes. But one of those areas is much bigger than the others.

“The key stretches in my other places are pretty small,” he says. “I can cover them in a couple of passes. But my best place is bigger with a lot more room and opportunities.”

The only piece of the puzzle Birge needs to fit together to reach total perfection is finding something to do in the first few hours of the day when the largemouths are not as cooperative.

“It’s such a waiting game with these colder mornings, and it might be even more so tomorrow [today’s temperature at takeoff was 41 degrees; tomorrow’s forecast is 34 degrees],” he says. “I think I might try to get a limit of spots before I try to force the largemouth bite. Having a little something in the well always helps.” 

 

Top 10 Pros

1: Zack Birge – Blanchard, Okla. – 36-13 (10)      

2: Drew Benton – Panama City, Fla. – 35-13 (10)           

3: Clark Wendlandt – Leander, Texas – 33-08 (10)        

4: Tracy Adams – Wilkesboro, N.C. – 31-12 (10) 

5: Scott Wiley – Bay Minette, Ala. – 31-10 (10)    

6: Ishama Monroe – Hughson, Calif. – 31-07 (10)           

7: Clayton Batts – Macon, Ga. – 31-06 (10)          

8: Jason Reyes – Huffman, Texas – 31-06 (10)    

9: Scott Martin – Clewiston, Fla. – 30-15 (10)      

10: Andy Morgan – Dayton, Tenn. – 30-14 (10)  

11: Jayme Rampey – Liberty, S.C. – 30-06 (10)   

12: Dave Lefebre – Erie, Pa. – 30-06 (10)

13: Adrian Avena – Vineland, N.J. – 29-12 (10)   

14: Luke Clausen – Spokane, Wash. – 29-11 (10)           

15: Matt Arey – Shelby, N.C. – 29-10 (10)

16: David Dudley – Lynchburg, Va. – 29-09 (10)

17: Shinichi Fukae – Palestine, Texas – 29-09 (10)        

18: Wesley Strader – Spring City, Tenn. – 29-05 (10)    

19: Anthony Gagliardi – Prosperity, S.C. – 29-05 (10)    

20: John Cox – Debary, Fla. – 29-04 (10) 

 

For complete results, click here.

Tags: lewis-smith  flw-tour  march  spotted-bass  headline-story  2015-03-26-lewis-smith-lake 

Rogers Wins from 8th on Erie

Rogers Wins from 8th on Erie

Starting the final day in eighth place, Lee Rogers of Newton, N.J., rocketed up the leaderboard with the biggest limit of the day to win the Toyota Series Northern Division event on Lake Erie. With the field confined to the area around Sandusky Bay due to wind, Rodgers brought 15 pounds, 10 ounces to the scale for a total of 48-12 to earn his first win with FLW. For his win, Rogers gets the trophy and a $32,439 paycheck. READ MORE »

Erie Midday Update – Day 3

Erie Midday Update – Day 3

With big winds present even before putting boats in the water, it was obvious that day three of the Toyota Series Northern Division event on Lake Erie was going to throw the anglers a curveball. After a short delay, the new boundaries were set from Marblehead Lighthouse to Cedar Point, and the pros blasted off in search of bass. READ MORE »

Lake Erie Top 5 Patterns – Day 2

Lake Erie Top 5 Patterns – Day 2

The final day of the Toyota Series Northern Division event on Lake Erie is likely to change things up quite a bit. With many of the top pros making long runs, there’s a chance much of what happened on days one and two will be physically impossible on day three. READ MORE »

Erie Midday Update – Day 2

Erie Midday Update – Day 2

Day two of the Toyota Series Northern Division event has been pretty slow across the board, and particularly for the leaders. Though the weather isn’t too bad and the wind is fairly manageable, the fishing in Erie is slower than it was yesterday. READ MORE »

Stokes Pulls Ahead on Erie

Stokes Pulls Ahead on Erie

One of a number of pros who elected to make the run from Sandusky to the Detroit River, Troy Stokes pulled into the lead on day two of the Toyota Series Northern Division event on Lake Erie. READ MORE »

Lake Erie Top 5 Patterns – Day 1

Lake Erie Top 5 Patterns – Day 1

Day one of the Toyota Series Northern Division event on Lake Erie was not dominated by St. Clair as some expected. Though St. Clair did produce the lead for Scott Dobson, a hodgepodge of techniques and locations got it done for the other top pros on Erie. READ MORE »

Dobson Takes Slim Lead on Erie

Dobson Takes Slim Lead on Erie

The weights on day one of the Toyota Series Northern Division event on Lake Erie were about what folks expected: plenty of quality fish, but a lack of the plump 4- and 5-pounders that Erie is so known for. Weighing one of only two bags over 20 pounds, Scott Dobson put 20-12 on the scale after a day of fishing that took him as far from Sandusky as the mouth of the St. Clair River. READ MORE »

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 »