UPCOMING EVENT: TOYOTA SERIES - 2020 - Lake Dardanelle

Top 5 Patterns from Santee Cooper - Day 1

Top 5 Patterns from Santee Cooper - Day 1

Yes, the fishing is tougher on Santee Cooper, but tough is relative on a lake like this.

A 20-pound bag didn’t even guarantee a top-15 standing, and FLW Tour rookie and local Bradford Beavers showed off a bit of his Santee prowess to the tune of 31 pounds, 2 ounces. Running 20 years of history, he grabbed a 5-pound lead on day one of the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division event presented by Power-Pole.

Of course, between the inclement weather forecast tomorrow and Santee Cooper’s history of humbling anglers, anything could happen. Here’s a look at the rest of the top guys trying to chase down Beavers.

Beavers' leading pattern

Complete results

 

Todd Olds

2. Todd Olds – North Charleston, S.C. – 26-2 (5)

Olds has been waiting a long time for a tournament day like today. Of course, no one was more surprised about it than him.

“I told my co-angler when he got in the boat today that I wasn’t really on anything strong,” says Olds, who owns a house on the lake. “So this was entirely unexpected.”

Almost as unexpected as catching a 6-pounder on his first cast of the day. Or catching a near 7-pounder on your fourth cast of your next spot.

Making Olds’ “great” day even the more surprising is that he did it despite losing his trolling motor about midmorning, when it suddenly quit out. That didn’t stop him from fishing roughly a dozen places between both Marion and Moultrie, but whenever he got in an area he basically had to Power-Pole down and chunk and wind around before pulling the poles up and drifting or “crawling at a snails pace” another 50 yards before poling down again.

“We were basically hunkered down and junk fishing,” Olds says. “I just hope to get my trolling motor fixed so I can do it again tomorrow. I’ll definitely need it in the wind.”

 

Laramy Strickland

3. Laramy Strickland – Bushnell, Fla. – 26-1 (5)

You can take the angler out of Florida, but you can’t take the Florida out of the angler.

Strickland had never been to Santee Cooper before this event. So, in practice he went looking for a “Florida-type deal.” Sure enough, he found a pattern well up above the 95 bridge in Marion – “I’m so far up good luck finding me” – that is a lot like how he fishes back home, and he went to work on them today.

“It all came together today,” Strickland says. “I hit my best stretch first thing and caught three big ones. Then I just left it, fished around a little more and caught two more good ones.”

Of course, with the big winds predicted for tomorrow, some might forgo the long, rough run up to the north end. Strickland won’t be one of them.

“I’m definitely going back,” Strickland says. “Of course, if we don’t fish tomorrow, I’m more than ok with it. It might just let my best stretch reload even more.”

 

Tony Couch

4. Tony Couch – Buckhead, Ga. – 24-5 (5)

Couch is back in a familiar spot. Now he’s just hoping to capitalize.

For the third time in a row, the former FLW Tour pro is in the top 10 after the first day of a Costa Series event on Santee Cooper. Problem is, each of the last two times he’s bombed on day two.

“Hopefully third time is the charm,” Couch says.

Hanging in Marion, Couch is fishing for both spawners he can’t see and prespawn fish, targeting a mixture of cypress trees and grass. In fact, it’s the same general area he’s fished the last two events.

“I just don’t want to make the same mistake I’ve made before,” Couch says. “If all of a sudden my bite gets tough, I’m leaving instead of staying like I’ve down before.”

 

Robert Crosnoe

5. Robert Crosnoe – Inverness, Fla. – 24-1 (5)

There was no secret about what Crosnoe was doing the second he held up his fish on stage. His fish were almost black in color

“Oh yeah, those fish came from deep in the cover,” Crosnoe says. “I’m punching hyacinth mats way above the 95 bridge. And I didn’t even hit my really good stuff way up north today.”

Crosnoe actually only got eight bites punching, but that’s because he basically quit fishing around 9:30 a.m. and then just went practicing for tomorrow.

“I wanted to save my fish and also see if I could find any other patterns up there,” Crosnoe says. “Anything to help me make the cut.”

Tags: sean-ostruszka  headline-story  2019-04-25-santee-cooper 

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