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

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Big Bite Anchors Jennings’ Lead on Delta

Big Bite Anchors Jennings’ Lead on Delta
Jerred Jennings

Second chances are few and far between on the super tough California Delta. However, Jerred Jennings of Stockton, Calif., capitalized on just such an oddity to anchor a five-bass limit of 22 pounds, 11 ounces, which leads day one of the Costa FLW Series Western Division tournament. The event is presented by Power-Pole and hosted by Russo’s Marina and Sugar Barge RV Resort & Marina.

Day one results

Jennings’ unexpected opportunity came by way of a 7-pound, 9-ounce bass that’s tied for Big Bass honors with Mike Birch’s best fish. With the Delta locked in a funky summer-to-fall transitional vibe and lots of grass lost to herbicide spraying, big fish are at a premium, so Jennings was delighted to get his day-maker in the boat.

“It was about mid-morning. I flipped in and missed it the first time,” Jennings recalls. “I pitched back in there, and I was pretty surprised to get bit again. My partner netted the fish while it was tail walking alongside the boat.”

Jennings caught his biggest fish by flipping a beaver-style bait with a 3/4-ounce weight. He also did some heavier punching with a 1-ounce weight and got a few topwater bites early in the morning. He’d first throw a frog, but he’d follow up with a buzzbait.

“If they’d come up on the frog and were just kissing it and not really taking it, I’d throw the buzzbait,” he says. “It makes them commit. They only get a split second to look at it, so they react to it.

“This time of year, 21 pounds is a really good sack, so to catch 23, I’m really happy,” Jennings adds. “You have to get a big bite every day. The 3-pounders are hard to find, but when you find them, you’re on the right fish.

One of the keys to Jennings’ success was making a milk run of key spots and never staying in one place for long. He hit 25 to 30 spots and each of them was chosen based on proximity to current.

“You had to be near moving water,” Jennings says. “If you didn’t have the moving water, you didn’t get bit. I tried to get as much of the outgoing tide as I could get.”

The falling water positions fish in generally predictable areas such as outside edges of vegetation and cover, but summer’s lingering swelter made for challenging conditions today. This, Jennings says, tested an angler’s mental game.

“You couldn’t really pinpoint them. You just had to stay focused, and if they bit, try to execute and get them in the boat,” he says. “It’s pretty hot out there, so it’s hard to stay focused.”

Jennings says he primarily fished the Central Delta because he could stay with moving water the entire day. Areas with dead-end sloughs eventually see slack water, but taking advantage of the Central Delta waterways allowed him to consistently fish the flow on an outgoing tide.

 

 

Top 10 pros

1. Jerred Jennings – Stockton, Calif. – 22-11 (5)            

2. Gregory Troughton – Discovery Bay, Calif. – 22-7 (5)                       

3. Robert Nakatomi – Sacramento, Calif. – 21-13 (5)                                        

4. Nick Nourot – Benicia, Calif. – 19-12 (5)                                             

5. Ken Mah – Elk Grove, Calif. – 19-9 (5)                                    

6. Jason Cordiale – Orinda, Calif. – 19-8 (5)                                           

7. Nicholas Cloutier – Oakley, Calif. – 19-5 (5)                                       

8. Bobby Barrack – Maud, Texas – 18-5 (5)                               

9. Mike Birch – Oakley, Calif. – 18-1 (5)              

10. Jeremy McKay – Creswell, Ore. – 18-0 (5)   

 

Rodriguez goes wacky for co-angler lead

Co-angler leader Richard Rodriguez went with a Delta classic, but beefed it up for a more enticing presentation that gave him a limit weighing 15-14.

“I caught all my fish on a wacky-rigged Senko,” Rodriguez says. “I used the 6-inch Senko – bigger bait, bigger fish.”

With most of his better bites coming in the morning, Rodriguez says he had a limit by 8:30. After that, he culled a couple times throughout the day, including a 4 1/2-pounder that replaced a 1-pound fish.

His prime targets included tule pockets and laydowns. As for presentation strategy, Rodriguez says it was all about fishing boldly.

“You want to try and get it far back in the tule pocket where the laydown is,” he says. “You just let it sit there and give it a couple of twitches. I would leave it there for longer than 10 to 15 seconds, and then I’d move on to the next one.”

 

Top 10 co-anglers

1. Richard Rodriguez – Modesto, Calif. – 15-14 (5)         

2. Dominick Mohameds – Oakley, Calif. – 14-11 (5)        

2. Aaron Sok-Jung Yun – Northridge, Calif. – 14-11 (5)              

4. Blaine Christiansen – San Jose, Calif. – 14-9 (5)                      

5. Rodney Brinser – Discovery Bay, Calif. – 14-8 (5)                               

6. Tony Zanotelli – Redding, Calif. – 13-4 (5)                               

7. Brad Shepherd – Templeton, Calif. – 13-0 (5)                         

8. Roger Haas – Morro Bay, Calif. – 12-13 (5)                              

9. Gabriel Diaz – Nuevo, Calif. – 12-10 (5)            

10. Ron Ratlief – Lake Havasu City, Ariz. – 12-9 (5)

Complete results

Tags: david-a-brown  headline-story  2018-09-27-california-delta 

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