UPCOMING EVENT: T-H Marine BFL - 2020 - Sam Rayburn Reservoir

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Okeechobee Top 5 Patterns Day 1

Okeechobee Top 5 Patterns Day 1
Robert Beatty, Scott Martin

Day one of the Costa FLW Series presented by Power-Pole on Okeechobee did not disappoint. One look at the standings sheet shows an impressive display of Florida bass were paraded across the stage. Gary Milicevic leads with 25-5 while eight other limits over 20 pounds were checked in and the daily big bass in both the pro and co-angler divisions broke the 10-pound mark with a 10-8 caught by pro Brian Holder and a 10-5 caught by co-angler Alonzo Evans.

Warming temperatures and a new moon coming Saturday may have helped usher in a new wave of females as several pros in the top 10 mentioned suddenly catching big fish in their small fish areas from practice.

Milicevic’s leading pattern

Complete results

 

Robert Beatty

2. Robert Beatty – Clermont, Fla. – 23-11 (5)

Robert Beatty, winner of the T-H Marine Bass Fishing League (BFL) Gator Division opener last week, continued to show that his knowledge of Florida strain female bass is for real.

Beatty reeled in 23 pounds, 11 ounces, including an 8-pound, 6-ounce brute to start the event in second place.

“I’m not doing anything different in my fishing this year, I’m just on a little bit of a hot streak right now,” Beatty says. “I’ve fished this lake for many years and I’m fishing it pretty much the same way I always do. It just takes a lot of time on the water to get a feel for how these Florida bass stage and set up, especially the bigger females.”

Beatty’s day did not start as planned; he only had one keeper at 11 o’ clock. But then he made a move to new area and it was lights out as he caught most of his weight on a stretch about 75 yards long.

“So much of fishing this lake is trying to figure out whether the big females are in the insides spawning with the males or on the outsides getting ready to come in,” Beatty says. “We’ve had two big spawns down here on the December and January full moons. During the BFL a lot of those big females were on the insides. This week is a little different – they seem to be more on the outsides.”

Similar to the tournament leader, Beatty noted that his best spots today had very little fishing pressure as well.

 

Derek Yasinski

3. Derek Yasinski – Senoia, Ga. – 23-8 (5)

Derek Yasinski stacked 23 pounds, 8 ounces into the scales to start the event in third place.

Yasinski’s morning got off to a slow start as well, but once he made a move to another location, he started filling the livewell with big ones by casting and winding. His biggest bass was just over 8 pounds.

“I think some big ones have moved in since practice,” he says. “There were a lot of bucks in this area the other day, but today there were two small specific spots that produced the bigger ones within the area. Those spots were more on the outside, so I’m hoping it’s another wave just coming in.”

 

Scott Byrd

4. Scott Byrd – Ocklawaha, Fla. – 22-13 (5)

Scott Byrd got his Costa FLW Series season started off on the right foot with 22-pound, 13-ounce catch on day one.

Byrd was the first to admit that his catch had more to do with the conditions coming together just right today, bringing in bigger fish than he was catching in practice.

“I had one place where I caught a bunch a small fish in practice,” Byrd says. “I ran there to get limit this morning and bigger ones were there today. I did slow down a little more today, which may have helped. The other day I whipped through there with a moving bait and got a bunch of bites. Today I slowed down and needled it a little more. But really, I think it got a little warmer and the weather stabilized a little bit and some big ones showed up.”

 

Buddy Gross

5. Buddy Gross – Chickamauga, Ga. – 22-1 (5)

Buddy Gross actually weighed in 24 pounds, 1 ounce today and would have been in second place, but he incurred a 2-pound penalty for having six fish in his livewell, which knocked him down to fifth place.

Gross is another angler who believes big fish moved into his practice areas over the last couple of days. He says his area was loaded with old beds and fry guarders and he purposely stayed off the hot zone and casted to it from a distance to catch the fish.

“My 2-1/2- and 3 pounders turned into big ones today,” Gross says. “I don’t how that happened but it did. I was fishing for 12 to 15 pounds today and it turned into what I weighed thanks to a 7-pounder and a couple of more big ones. All I can figure is some new ones moved in there overnight.” 

Tags: rob-newell  headline-story  2017-01-26-lake-okeechobee 

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