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Castledine Continues His Reign

Castledine Continues His Reign

Most days, Todd Castledine does not like fishing slowly. Today, he made an exception because deceleration was the key to a solid effort that kept him atop the Costa FLW Series Central Division tournament presented by Mercury on Lake Dardanelle with a two-day total of 38 pounds, 1 ounce.

After sacking up a day-one limit of 22-3, the event’s second-largest bag (behind Jeff Fitts’ day-two catch, 23-15), Castledine added 15-14 and retained the lead he set a day earlier with an expanded margin of 4 pounds, 5 ounces.

Considering that he did this with only four fish on day two, Castledine was clearly in the right neighborhood. He’s not keen on sharing that address just yet, but he did stress that slowing down proved essential on a day when falling water levels and lower temperatures had the fish in a funky mood.

“I’m usually pretty good about figuring out how to do something different, but when it got tough in practice I never really could,” Castledine says. “Today, James Watson and I were in the same area, and he kinda put me on a little deal. He basically told me to slow down a lot more. We both hate slowing down, but that helped out.”

Castledine is fishing offshoots of a larger bay where deeper, clear water runs close to shallow cover, such as brush, laydowns and points. He believes his areas were hosting fish in all stages of the spawn.

“I think it was half-and-half, prespawn and spawning fish, and I think there were a couple that were spawned out,” Castledine adds. “I think the ones that were on beds got picked off, and the prespawners got hard to catch today.”

Keeping his cards low on the bait specifics, Castledine admits he used a mix of reaction baits and pitching presentations. Casting distance played a key role in some of the scenarios he fished.

Bites were few and far between, but he had his shot at No. 5.

“I’ve been throwing fluorocarbon, and I threw into some cover where I never should have thrown fluorocarbon, and I broke one off,” he says. “I had four other bites [that he missed], but they’re still in there, and I think they’ll hit tomorrow.”

Castledine had his area to himself on day one and saw a little more company today. Yet, he found several opportunities.

“I was worried about the fishing pressure from other people being in there,” he says. “But I had some other bites in there, and I’m excited about fishing tomorrow. It’s going to be interesting.”

 

Complete results

 

Top 10 Pros

1. Todd Castledine – Nacogdoches, Texas – 38-01 (9)                

2. Zach King – Clarksville, Ark. – 33-12 (10)                    

3. Greg Jones – Wentzville, Mo. – 33-10 (10)                   

4. Daniel Kweekul – Bryant, Ark. – 33-01 (10)                

5. Christopher Jones – Bokoshe, Okla. – 32-01 (10)                    

6. Jeff Fitts – Keystone Heights, Fla. – 31-06 (8)              

7. Teddy Bogard – Pine Bluff, Ark. – 31-05 (10)              

8. Joe McClary – Kirkwood, Mo. – 29-15 (10)                   

9. Brandon Hunter – Benton, Ky. – 28-07 (9)                  

10. Evan Barnes – Hot Springs, Ark. – 28-04 (10)

 

Watson Takes Over Co-angler Lead

Flexibility and adjustment were the key ingredients in Michael Watson’s recipe for success. After catching a limit that weighed 11 pounds, 7 ounces today, the Chicago co-angler moved into the top spot with a total of 21-14.

“Everything I caught my fish on yesterday did not carry over today,” Watson says. “I definitely changed a lot of stuff and adjusted throughout the day as the bite changed. I caught some decent fish, culled one time and came in with a decent weight.”

Watson says that he and his pro stayed around similar shallow cover all day, but narrowing down a couple of specifics on fish positioning helped his cause.

“I was able to change some lure presentations based on the mood of the fish,” he explains. “Some fish wanted something slow; some wanted something moving.

“There’s a lot of pressure on the fish, so I was just trying to throw something different the fish haven’t seen.”

Remaining mum on bait specifics, Watson says that he caught fish on three different baits.

“I caught my best fish in the morning, another after that; then I caught a couple more midday and two more at the end of the day to fill out my limit,” he said.

 

Top 10 Co-anglers

1. Michael Watson – Chicago, Ill. – 21-14 (8)                       

2. Rob Crane – Fairview Heights, Ill. – 20-06 (7)                 

3. Roger Olson Jr. – Eagle River, Wis. – 19-05 (6)                

4. Drew Sagely – Rogers, Ark. – 19-00 (6)               

5. Kyle Landers – Benton, Ark. – 18-11 (8)             

6. Rusty Reinoehl – Robinson, Ill. – 18-04 (7)                     

7. Alan Bernicky – Joliet, Ill. – 17-15 (6)                  

8. Sawyer Grace – Russellville, Ark. – 17-04 (5)                  

9. Ricky Watkins – Springdale, Ark. – 16-04 (6)                  

10. Kevin Raposo – Doniphan, Mo. – 15-09 (4)

 

Tournament Details

Format: All 190 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: Lake Dardanelle State Park, 2428 Marina Road, Russellville, AR 72801

Weigh-In Time: Days 1 and 2 at 3 p.m.; Day 3 at 4 p.m.

Weigh-In Location: Days 1 and 2 at Lake Dardanelle State Park; Day 3 at Walmart, 2409 E. Main St., Russellville, AR 72802

 

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Tags: todd-castledine  flw-series  lake-dardanelle  david-a-brown  headline-story  2016-03-31-lake-dardanelle 

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