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

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

Wilson Whacks ‘em on Rayburn

Wilson Whacks ‘em on Rayburn
Kris Wilson cracked 27-10 on day one to jump into the lead.

Prudence paid big dividends for Montgomery, Texas, pro Kris Wilson, who topped day one of the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division opener on Sam Rayburn Reservoir, which is presented by Mercury and hosted by the Jasper-Lake Sam Rayburn Area Chamber of Commerce. His day-one limit catch weighed 27 pounds, 10 ounces.

Understandably tight-lipped and sporting the coy grin of a man who’d found the mother lode, Wilson was able to shed a little light on his exceptional day.

For starters, he attributes his success to long-range weather watching and diligent site planning.

“I was watching the weather a week ahead of time, and I kind of planned for the weather we had and everything worked out,” Wilson says.

Specifically, Wilson is referring to the post-frontal conditions draping Rayburn. A major weather system plowed through the Gulf region on Tuesday, bringing heavy rains and big winds.

East Texas avoided the worst of the storms, but once the front cleared, the temperature dropped, the wind decreased and skies turned bluebird clear. Today, lots of sunshine gradually warmed the water and pinned the shallow fish tighter to cover.

Wilson wouldn’t divulge specifics about the types of cover he’s targeting, but he did say that the key habitat is very specific. Locations, he notes, were random. He found his preferred setup all over the lake.

Wilson says he hit approximately 20 spots today and targeted both prespawn and spawning fish.

“I had areas with both,” he explains. “It was about 50/50. I ran around quite a bit. I fished all over the lake, and it was a steady bite throughout the day.”

As for presentations, Wilson caught his shallow fish by flipping soft plastics. For the prespawners, he employed a dragging technique.

Wilson caught roughly 15 to 20 keepers today. He says the bite was slower than he would have preferred, but picking through his areas produced the quality he needed.

Advanced tournament preparation, particularly in terms of selecting the key areas to target, gave Wilson the confidence he needed to work through a somewhat plodding day and stick to his game plan.

“I caught fish pretty much where I expected to catch them,” he adds.

 

Top 10 pros

1. Kris Wilson - Montgomery, Texas - 27-10 (5)

2. Ricky Guy - Humble, Texas - 25-8 (5)

3. Chris McCall - Brookeland, Texas - 24-3 (5)

4. Cory Rambo - Orange, Texas - 23-9 (5)

5. Jerry Dubose - Silsbee, Texas - 22-0 (5)

6. Roger Hughes - Bartlesville, Ok. - 21-4 (5)

7. Allen Rude - Pauls Valley, Ok. - 20-12 (5)

8. Tyson Patrick - McCamey, Texas - 20-6 (5)

9. Denny Brauer - Del Rio, Texas - 20-1 (5)

10. Tommy Martin - Hemphill, Texas - 19-10 (5)

Complete Results

 

John Moon

Key bait decision pushes Moon to co-angler lead

A wish granted and the right bait chosen — that’s the formula that lead John Moon, of Brookeland, Texas to the 19-pound, 3-ounce bag that leads the co-angler division.

Moon experienced some early success, but then a drought prompted a request that led to a highlight reel moment.

“This morning was kind of slow, but about 10 o’clock, I caught a 4 ½-pounder flipping, but then it kinda got slow,” Moon says. “I still kept culling and toward the end of the day, it just shut off.

“I asked my pro if we could go to one of my spots on the way back and when we pulled in there, I decided to put on a spinnerbait. On my third cast, I stuck my (8 1/2-pounder).”

Initially, Moon mistook a relatively subtle bite for a snag.

“I thought I was hung up and then I felt the fish move and I stuck it and I knew it was a big one,” he recalls.

Moon’s big fish ate a slow-rolled 3/4-ounce War Eagle spinnerbait in mouse color with twin willow baits. Slow rolling the bait on a creek channel bend was the winning presentation.

 

Top 10 co-anglers

1. John Moon – Brookeland, Texas - 19-3 (5)

2. Randy Hicks – Lumberton, Texas - 18-11 (5)

3. Larry Regina – South Bend, Ind. - 16-9 (5)

4. Rick Vallis – Fort Smith, Ark. - 16-1 (5)

5. Rolan Foster – Terrell, Texas - 16-0 (5)

6. Ryan Keele – Center, Texas - 15-11 (5)

7. Jon Lessard – Katy, Texas - 15-3 (5)

8. Jacob Root – Brookeland, Texas - 15-3 (5)

9. Chaz York – Vidor, Texas - 15-3 (5)

10. Hunter Marshall – Beaumont, Texas - 15-1 (5)

 

Tournament Details

Format: All 202 boaters and co-anglers will compete for two days. The top 10 boaters and co-anglers based on cumulative weight after two days of competition will advance to the third and final round, with the winner determined by the heaviest cumulative three-day weight.

Takeoff Time: 7 a.m.

Takeoff Location: Umphrey Family Pavilion, 5438 RR 255, Brookeland TX 75931

Weigh-In Time: Days 1 and 2 at 3 p.m.; Day 3 at 3 p.m.

Weigh-In Location: Umphrey Family Pavilion, 5438 RR 255, Brookeland TX 75931

 

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