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


Norris Lake Day 2 Coverage

Todd Hollowell

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Tournament details

Williams’ leading pattern

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2:10 p.m.: Final round up

We’re about 50 minutes from weigh-in and we’re calling it a day on the coverage blog. It’s been a bit of a slow afternoon, but there’s enough fishing left to make things very interesting tomorrow.

Recently, William Cambell caught his fourth – he’s got more than 12 pounds with just four and is on track to make the top 10. Gary Yamamoto might just cull again and Zell Rowland is a keeper away from making the cut. Heading into weigh-in, there’s plenty of drama on tap – from who makes to cut to just how big of a lead James Watson is going to have. For all that, the place to be is flwfishing.com or Anderson County Park and the time is 3 p.m. ET. 


1:41 p.m.: Gary Yamamoto has culled again

We speculated this morning about the chance for someone to pull a JT Kenney and catch a big bag and move up into the cut. Today, that man is Gary Yamamoto. A little bit ago, he culled twice in about 10 minutes to bring his total to about 15 pounds. He has rocketed up to eighth place (by our estimate) and is set to go from nowhere to a contender on the final day. 


1:25 p.m.: What will it take to make the cut?

Only the top 20 fish tomorrow’s final day. Right now, the cut weight to shoot for looks to be between 10 and 11 pounds. That’s not a whole lot. It’s really only two fish if you get extremely lucky. Catching a little more than 5 pounds a day usually isn’t something to brag about, but as tough as Norris has been, it’s quite an achievement this week. 


1:13 p.m.: Will Canterbury make it?

It was all in good fun, but yesterday at weigh-in, Scott Canterbury got downright antagonistic with the Tennessee crowd about college football. He figures he’s winning either way, if he makes the cut he’ll fish another day, and if not he’s headed back home for the Alabama game on Saturday. As of now, we’ve got him in 18th and fishing on Saturday with just four fish. If Hammerbury can figure his way into another keeper, he’ll be about guaranteed to stay in Tennessee another day. 


David Williams

12:41 p.m.: Williams has a keeper, Yamamoto is killing it

David Williams is finally on the board. He caught it on a spinnerbait from under a dock after just losing one near there. He’s really had a rough day, but a few more keepers from him in the waning hours will go a long way toward keeping him in the hunt tomorrow.

While Williams is having a terrible day, Gary Yamamoto is crushing. He started the day in 54th with just two keepers, but he’s just filled his limit now (including a 4-pounder) and has about 13 pounds and is in 12th by our estimates. 


James Watson

11:45 a.m.: Michael Neal is on a roll and Watson has culled again

Since our last update, Michael Neal has gone from a few fish to a limit worth more than 10 pounds. He's fishing very shallow (so shallow that he's gotten stuck at least onece) and moving very fast. In the lead, James Watson has culled twice now and is up to about 13 pounds. If things keep up, he might go into the final day with a lead of about 4 pounds. 


11:10 a.m.: Heading into the second half

Midway through the day, the fishing is definitely better for many, though that isn’t universal. For instance, Todd Hollowell and David Williams each caught ‘em on day one, today they have zero keepers between them. Nonetheless, with cool temps, a fair amount of wind and occasional rain (that is growing rarer by the minute), it’s still a nice fall day to be out on Norris and there’s plenty of time left. One thing to watch this afternoon will be the effect of the front moving out. Saturday is supposed to be the truly post-frontal day, but there’s a chance that the fishing gets a bit tougher as the day goes on instead of keeping pace with the hot morning.

Besides the leaders with limits, Greg Werner and Matt Arey are lurking just outside of the top group with three fish each. They each seem to have a knack for getting quality bites today, and if they can rustle another keeper or two things might get interesting. 


Wesley Strader

10:53 a.m.: Limits for the leaders

James Watson, Derrick Blake, Wesley Strader, Tracy Adams and Jason Lambert have all worked up to limits now, each doing something at least a little different. Lambert cranked up most of his, James Watson is chunking a topwater, Blake has been hitting docks, Adams is mixing between a topwater and a spinning rod and Strader is rolling down the bank with a buzzbait.

David Williams, who started the day with the lead, has really struggled so far. He’s lost a couple and landed a few shorts, but doesn’t have a keeper to his name yet. After spending some time outside of his marina, Williams has gone back to the docks and his school of deep bass for another shot. Per our reporter, the bass are still there, so it might just be a matter of time until Williams can make them bite. 


Derrick Blake

10:10 a.m. Blake is the first to a limit

Derrick Blake is apparently doing a passable imitation of Bryan Thrift, running and gunning from spot to spot and fishing a pile of docks well up the Clinch. Today, that’s resulted in the first limit of the day and moved him up to second place with over 22 pounds. Though Tour pros are by and large dominating the top 10, Blake seems to be carrying the local banner with ease. 


James Watson

9:50 a.m.: Watson has moved into the lead

James Watson hasn’t been running into any lightning flurries, but he’s been catching steady quality this morning. Now, he’s up to four keepers for a total of about 9 .5 pounds and a total of 23 pounds. With Lambert stalled at four keepers and Williams still off the board, Watson has a clear lead.

Behind him, Wesley Strader also has four, but hasn’t run into the same kind of quality that Watson has. His four go for a total of about 6 pounds and he’s caught ‘em all on a buzzbait. 


David Williams

9:10 a.m.: Updating around the field

Jason Lambert has moved off his primary spot with just four keepers. He culled a few times on day one with a buzzbait. However the rest of his day goes, he certainly had a good morning.

Elsewhere, Tracy Adams has two in boat, Bill Dunn has one small keeper and lost a good smallmouth, Greg Werner has two 3-pound smallmouths and is making a move and Teddy Cranford has a 3-pounder and a 1-pounder to start this day. Starting in 10th, Matt Arey is doing pretty good as well – he’s got three for a total of about 7 pounds and one of them is a nice keeper smallie. Finally, Kurt Mitchell has a pair of keeper largemouth.

As for the leaders, David Williams has lost one so far and James Watson has two fish that are each about 3 pounds.

The story of the day is really the smallmouth. There are a pile of anglers who did terrible on day one who have caught a nice one (or more) so far. It seems inevitable that someone will put together a nice limit of them and move way up. 


Derrick Blake

8:45 a.m.: Blake update

Derrick Blake started the day in fourth place and is going strong again today. It seems like the fishing is better across the board this morning and he’s taking advantage. So far, Blake has three 2-pounders in the boat and his total is about 18 pounds. Fishing a ways up the Clinch, Blake is mostly flipping for his fish to start. 


Jason Lambert

8:35 a.m.: Jason Lambert is crushing

After starting the day with a double, Jason Lambert has kept right on cooking. He’s tossed a pair of non-keepers back and currently has four in the ‘well worth about 8 pounds. With that, he’s unofficially up past 20 pounds and in the lead by about 4 pounds. On day one, Lambert tapped an offshore hole with a crankbait for an early limit. Today, he’s doing the same thing to start, but there’s a chance he leans on them a little more this time around. 


8:20 a.m.: We’re underway

After a slightly delayed start due to dark conditions, the pros have hit the water. Running about 30 minutes from takeoff to start, Jason Lambert doubled up with keeper largemouth on his first cast. So, that’s a pretty good start.

Elsewhere, it seems like the fish are biting pretty good this morning. Though David Williams isn’t on the board yet, plenty of other anglers are. Scott Canterbury has a small keeper, Vince Yonemitsu and Ray Philhower each have a good smallie in the box and Derrick Blake is cooking with a 2-pounder as well. 


Jason Lambert

7:45 a.m.: Day two on Norris presents a new challenge

We’re watching three primary storylines on day two of the Walmart FLW Tour Invitational presented by Quaker State on Norris Lake: will the weather change things, will we see a big riser and will the leaders hold steady?

Anglers this week have wished for colder weather since the tournament began, thinking that cooler temps will bring a better smallmouth bite. Today they’re going to have it. As the pros launched from Anderson County Park a cold, misting rain washed over the proceedings and a brisk wind blew leaves around and knocked over the occasional trashcan. Today, the high temperature is forecast to be 62 – yesterday’s high was 81. The cold will be too late to really change the water temperature and put the smallmouths more toward a winter pattern, but it might change other things. Whenever there is a big switch in the weather, that’s bound to present a new opportunity – we’re looking for someone to seize it today.

On day two at the Forrest Wood Cup, JT Kenney moved from miles back in the pack with just one keeper into the top 20 with a giant bag. Today, we might see something like that happen again. With weights as low and tight as they are, there is a big chance for nearly anyone to catch a good bag and move from obscurity to the top 20 and the final day.  

Finally, the leaders need to keep up the pace. On day one, catching a limit went an awful long way, that figures to be the same today and it’s going to be a challenge for any of the leaders to keep up with their peers without one. On day one, Michael Neal got only five bites all day and limited – that might work again, but odds are he’ll need to generate a few more if he hopes to move up from 15th into the conversation for the win on the final day.

The fishing wasn’t what everyone hoped for on day one, but that doesn’t mean we’re in for a bad tournament. If drama is your thing, today is probably going to have a lot of it.


Jason Lambert in action on day one


Wesley Strader on the GoPro on day one


Tournament details

Format: All pros will compete for the first two days. The top 20 pros 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: 7:30 a.m. ET

Takeoff Location: Anderson County Park, 2191 Park Lane, Andersonville, Tenn. 37705

Weigh-In Time: 3 p.m. ET

Weigh-In Location: Anderson County Park

Complete details


Conditions - Five-Day Forecast

Temperature at takeoff: 58 degrees

Forecast high: 60 degrees

Sky: mostly cloudy

Precipitation: 60 percent chance of rain in the morning, tapering off in the afternoon

Wind: Northwest wind 10 to 15 mph, with gusts as high as 20 mph

Tags: headline-story  2016-10-20-norris-lake 


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