UPCOMING EVENT: YETI College Fishing - 2019 - Sam Rayburn Reservoir


Cox, Auten Knotted at the Top

John Cox

Forrest Wood Cup leader John Cox of DeBary, Fla., watched his 6-pound, 7-ounce lead get slashed to 9 ounces instantly on day three of competition at Wheeler Lake.

The man responsible for erasing Cox’s leading margin?

Todd Auten of Lake Wylie, S.C.

Today, Auten checked in his biggest limit of the week, 17 pounds, 10 ounces, to leap from fifth into second and create a major threat to Cox’s Cup dreams going into the final day.

Cox’s 11-pound catch today was his lightest of the week, bringing his three-day total to 43 pounds, 5 ounces.

Despite having the gap closed up, Cox still seems very much at ease about his situation.

“I know it was my lightest bag of the week, but I pretty much expected that,” Cox says. “I went back into the same creek I’ve been fishing the last two days, and it’s playing out. I’ve caught quite a few fish out of it, and I think I’ve removed a lot of the quality fish from the area. That’s to be expected when fishing small, residential places like that. Plus, there were a few other local folks fishing back there, which is going to happen. So all in all I’m not shocked or surprised.”

John Cox

For the first time all week, Cox did venture out of his primary area today to visit another extreme backwater he had been saving. That move turned out to be fruitless and is a bit more disconcerting to Cox.

“I had some high hopes for that place, but it wasn’t any good,” he says. “The good news is that I got that place out of my head, though. I won’t waste time with it tomorrow. I still have one other place I have not been to yet that I will start in tomorrow. If it goes well in there, I will stay. If not, I’m going to have to return to my original creek and hope for the best.”

Cox says the water has come up about 8 inches in the last few days, and that has made access to his remote areas easier for others. That fact, above all, concerns him most.

“When I went in these places during practice, I could barely get in them with my aluminum boat,” he says. “But now, with the water up, they’re not as hard to access, so I have no way of knowing if other anglers have been in them. When it was lower, I knew I was the only one that could get in them.”

With others in the top 10 some 5 pounds behind Cox and Auten, the final day of the Forrest Wood Cup has the appearance of being a two-man race. But enough 15- to 19-pound limits have been weighed in this week to make anything possible.

One thing is for certain: The 2016 Forrest Wood Cup is far from over.

John Cox


Complete results


Top 10 Pros

1. John Cox – DeBary, Fla. – 43-5

2. Todd Auten – Lake Wylie, S.C. – 42-12

3. Michael Neal – Dayton, Tenn. – 37-14

4. Bryan Thrift – Shelby, N.C. – 37-13

5. Jacob Wheeler – Indianapolis, Ind. – 37-3

6. Mark Rose – West Memphis, Ark. – 36-9

7. Brandon Cobb – Greenwood, S.C. – 35-9

8. Joseph Webster – Fulton, Miss. – 34.13

9. Chris Johnston – Peterborough, Ontario – 34-3

10. Jeremy Lawyer – Sarcoxie, Mo. – 32-15

Complete results


Day 1 Stats

Total limits: 17

Average bag: 10 pounds, 5 ounces

Average number of fish: 4

Total catch weight: 207 pounds, 6 ounces

Total number of fish: 95


Tournament Details

Forrest Wood Cup Takeoff Show: 6:30 a.m. CT at Ditto Landing, 293 Ditto Landing Road, Huntsville, Ala.

Takeoff: 7 a.m. CT at Ditto Landing

Weigh-in: 5 p.m. CT at Von Braun Center (Propst Arena), 700 Monroe Street SW, Huntsville, Ala.

FLW Expo: Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4:40 p.m., at the Von Braun Center – More info: Seminars and Celebrities and Giveaways and Contests

Format: All 50 pros fish Thursday and Friday. The top 20 pros based on two-day cumulative weight make the cut to fish on Saturday. The top 10 anglers based on three-day cumulative weight make the cut to fish on Sunday. The winner is the angler with the heaviest four-day cumulative weight.



Tags: john-cox  forrest-wood-cup  wheeler-lake  todd-auten  rob-newell  headline-story  2016-08-04-forrest-wood-cup 


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