UPCOMING EVENT: T-H Marine BFL - 2019 - Potomac River

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

Stefan Sticks 18

Stefan Sticks 18
Matthew Stefan

Muddy, rising water has been the bane of the FLW Tour recently. After a rising-water event at Lake Cumberland, then a mega rising-water event at Beaver Lake, the pros once again find themselves in a familiar predicament at the FLW Tour presented by Evinrude on the Mississippi.

After a warm, sunny practice where bass were moving up by the droves to spawn, a cold front dumped plenty of rain in the river basin Wednesday. For FLW Tour pros, it was like déjà vu all over again. And with many Tour pros having very little prior experience on the Mighty Mississippi, things can get even more confusing.

Complete results

Day one coverage blog

Top five patterns from day one

But even just a little experience on the river goes a long way, as day one tournament leader Matthew Stefan of Junction City, Wis., demonstrated Thursday.

Stefan took the early lead with five smallmouths weighing 18 pounds even.

“I am by no means a river stud over here on these pools, but I do fish here about five days a year,” says Stefan, who lives about two hours away from La Crosse. “I’ve never fished here in May, but on this place, just knowing how to get around in these backwaters and how to gauge barge traffic for locking is a big help. So, comparatively speaking, I probably do have a little bit of an advantage on guys who have never seen this place before this week.”

Stefan sampled pools 8 and 9 for his catch Thursday. He weighed in all smallmouths, a rarity for day one limits.

“I really didn’t come here specifically to target smallmouths this week,” he says. “But I just couldn’t get much going with the largemouths in practice and I found there were still a few quality smallmouths on beds, so that’s the direction I went.”

Matt Stefan

Stefan started his day by plucking a couple of bedding brownies that he had marked in practice. From there he mostly fished banks where smallmouth bedding is more probable.

“I know two of the ones I weighed were on beds, but the other three came just fishing,” he says. “Could they have been on beds? Maybe so, but I don’t know that for a fact.”

Stefan was understandably not very detailed about what kinds of banks he’s targeting, but did say he’s fishing the same way he does back home on the Wisconsin River.

“The Wisconsin is like a little mini Mississippi River,” he adds. “The fish set up the same way. So I’m fishing similar type banks that I would fish back home. It’s stuff that feels comfortable to me.”

Like others, Stefan is on edge about locking again on Friday.

“I’m going to start in 8,” he says. “And if I can get to the cut weight by staying here, then I’ll save 9 for the weekend. But if I can’t get it going here [8], I might have to risk it and go down there for a bit.”

 

 

Top 10 pros

1. Matthew Stefan – Junction City, Wis. – 18-0 (5)

2. Matt Arey – Shelby, N.C. – 17-14 (5)

3. Todd Auten – Lake Wylie, S.C. – 16-11 (5)

3. Andy Morgan – Dayton, Tenn. – 16-11 (5)

5. Matt Greenblatt – Port St. Lucie, Fla. – 16-1 (5)

6. Scott Martin – Clewiston, Fla. – 15-14 (5)
7. David Dudley – Lynchburg, Va. – 15-13 (5)

7. Jeff Sprague – Point, Texas – 15-13 (5)

9. Josh Weaver – Macon, Ga. – 15-9 (5)

9. Cody Meyer – Auburn, Calif. – 15-9 (5)

Complete results

 

Tim Beale

Beale takes day one co-angler lead

Tim Beale of Hernando, Miss. sits atop the day one co-angler leaderboard with a five-fish limit weighing 15 pounds, 8 ounces. Beale, who fished day one with Maiden, N.C., pro Drew Montgomery, says he caught his fish dragging plastic baits in shallow water in a backwater area off the main river.

“We fished a combination of muddy and clear water,” says Beale. “It was tough fishing at first, and it took us a while to get the bites.” 

Complete results

Tags: rob-newell  headline-story  2017-05-18-mississippi-river-pools-7-8-9- 

Grover Grabs Clear Lake Title

Grover Grabs Clear Lake Title

Clear Lake is always a fun place to fish, but wind, rain and cooler temperatures made things tough for the second stop of the Costa FLW Series Western Division event presented by Ranger Boats, and the famed fishery wasn't as kind as it can be with many pros struggling as the week went on. Kyle Grover, on the other hand, only got better as the tournament progressed. READ MORE »

Top 5 Patterns from Clear Lake Day 2

Top 5 Patterns from Clear Lake Day 2

Drop-shotting tules was the main pattern for Uribe and knowing how to reach the fish made all the difference. Adjusting to the conditions was definitely key on day two, and no doubt the rest of the top pros had to go with the flow to stay in sight of the title. READ MORE »

Uribe in Charge on Clear Lake

Uribe in Charge on Clear Lake

When weather woes nixed Joe Uribe Jr.’s initial objective, the resilient angler from Surprise, Ariz., refocused his effort and sacked up a limit of 19 pounds, 5 ounces to take over the lead on day two of the Costa FLW Series Western Division event presented by Ranger Boats and hosted by Konocti Vista Casino Resort & Marina with a total weight of 41-13. READ MORE »

Clear Lake Midday Update – Day 2

Clear Lake Midday Update – Day 2

Clear Lake was in a foul, foul mood this morning for the second day’s launch of the Costa FLW Series Western Division event, which is presented by Ranger Boats and hosted by Konocti Vista Casino Resort & Marina. Absent was the drizzly rain of yesterday, but the tradeoff was a 15- to 20-mph northwest wind that turned the lake into a washing machine. READ MORE »

Top 5 Patterns from Clear Lake Day 1

Top 5 Patterns from Clear Lake Day 1

Lane Olson of Forest Grove, Ore., benefitted from a double dose of Clear Lake kickers when he found the right set of docks in a major spawning bay. Finesse baits did the trick up shallow for the day one leader at the Costa FLW Series Western Division event presented by Ranger Boats. Other slow presentations served his brief offshore work. Handling the day’s weather challenges was a big part of Olson’s success.  Here are the details of the rest of the top five. READ MORE »

Olson Out in Front at Clear Lake

Olson Out in Front at Clear Lake

Lane Olson of Forest Grove, Ore., was able to separate himself from the pack on day one of the Costa FLW Series Western Division event presented by Ranger Boats with a five-bass limit weighing 25 pounds. One of four anglers to crack 20 pounds, Olson leads second-place pro Joe Uribe Jr. by 2 1/2 pounds. The rest of the top 20 are packed together with just a few pounds separating them.  READ MORE »

Clear Lake Midday Update – Day 1

Clear Lake Midday Update – Day 1

The weather system pushing through northern California brought dreary, drizzly conditions interspersed with occasional steady spells of light rain for day one of the Costa FLW Series Western Division event, which is presented by ranger Boats and hosted by Konocti Vista Casino Resort & Marina. The sun made only a few peeking appearances, but there were several bright spots in the morning’s activity. READ MORE »

South Laurel Wins KHSAA Championship on Kentucky

South Laurel Wins KHSAA Championship on Kentucky

The South Laurel High School team of Shawn Coots and Trent Keltner weighed 19 pounds, 9 ounces on day one and 13-4 on day two for a 32-13 total and the win in the 2019 Kentucky High School Athletic Association (KHSAA) State Bass Fishing Championship on Kentucky Lake. READ MORE »

Manson Nets Third Win

Manson Nets Third Win

Scott Manson of Covington, Ohio, brought five bass to the scale Saturday weighing 13 pounds, 4 ounces, to take top honors at the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Buckeye Division opener on Grand Lake-St. Mary’s presented by Navionics. For his efforts, Manson netted $4,046. READ MORE »

Herron, Rutland tie on Lay Lake

Herron, Rutland tie on Lay Lake

Dusty Herron of Alabaster, Alabama, and Chris Rutland of Wetumpka, Alabama, each caught five bass Saturday weighing 16 pounds even to tie for the win at the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Bama Division tournament on Lay Lake. After contingency awards, Rutland earned $3,435, while Herron took home $2,435. READ MORE »

Shad Spawn Takes Elrod to Top

Shad Spawn Takes Elrod to Top

Bryan Elrod of Mechanicsville, Virginia, won the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Piedmont Division tournament on Smith Mountain Lake presented by Navionics Saturday with five bass weighing 17 pounds, 1 ounce. For his efforts, Elrod pocketed $3,766. READ MORE »

Burroughs Dials Blueback Spawn

Burroughs Dials Blueback Spawn

Jason Burroughs of Hodges, South Carolina, brought five bass to the scale Saturday weighing 16 pounds even win the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Savannah River Division tournament on Lake Hartwell. For his efforts, Burroughs was awarded $3,572. READ MORE »

Wagner Makes it a Dozen

Wagner Makes it a Dozen

Adam Wagner of Cookeville, Tennessee, brought five bass to the scale Saturday weighing 18 pounds, 10 ounces, to win the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Music City Division tournament on Tims Ford Lake. Wagner took home $4,013 for his efforts. READ MORE »

Table Rock Midday Update – Day 3

Table Rock Midday Update – Day 3

With just one keeper from his three primary pockets, leader Jake Morris might have left the door open on the final day of the Costa FLW Series Central Division tournament at Table Rock Lake. His frog pattern might be fizzling out due to clear water and changing conditions. READ MORE »

Olliverson Triumphs on Table Rock

Olliverson Triumphs on Table Rock

Missouri pro Eric Olliverson came back from fourth place on the final day to unseat Jake Morris and company and win the Costa FLW Series Central Division event presented by Power-Pole on Table Rock Lake. Olliverson’s 16-pound, 8-ounce bag on the final day gave him 46-3 for the tournament and the win by just 5 ounces over Dakota Ebare. READ MORE »

Top 5 Patterns from Table Rock – Day 2

Top 5 Patterns from Table Rock – Day 2

A few spawning bass are making their way to the scale in the top pros' bags, but most of the consistent action has come flipping or fishing topwater for largemouths, smallmouths and spotted bass at Table Rock. READ MORE »

Morris Still Rocking Table Rock

Morris Still Rocking Table Rock

Jake Morris of McKee, Ky., continues to lead the Costa FLW Series Central Division event at Table Rock Lake. Morris, who won the season opener at Kentucky Lake, has a two-day total of 32 pounds, 7 ounces. READ MORE »

Table Rock Midday Update – Day 1

Table Rock Midday Update – Day 1

Catching fish is hardly the problem right now at stop No. 2 of the Costa FLW Series Central Division at Table Rock Lake. It seemed like every pro our on-the-water crew pulled up on today, be it on the lower end or up the rivers, was setting the hook with reckless abandon. Unfortunately, the quality has been extremely lacking. READ MORE »

Top 5 Patterns from Table Rock – Day 1

Top 5 Patterns from Table Rock – Day 1

The vast majority of the field was able to scrounge up limits between 10 and 13 pounds, but getting over the 13-pound mark has been a challenge at the Costa FLW Series Central Division event, which is presented by Power-Pole and hosted by Explore Branson. READ MORE »

Morris Starts Fast on Table Rock

Morris Starts Fast on Table Rock

Coming off a win in the Costa FLW Series Central Division opener on Kentucky Lake, Jake Morris started great in the second stop of the season as well. Weighing 17 pounds, 4 ounces on day one, Morris leads a tightly packed field in the Table Rock event, which is presented by Power-Pole and hosted by Explore Brandon. READ MORE »