|Tournament Winner the humble Dennis Lothspeich in his new ride.|
Not The Day I Was Looking For:
We blasted off at about a quarter to 8AM. We went to the channel that separates the two basins. I quickly had a fish on my D & M Baits Piranha bluegill color, but it was a pike. As we were fishing through the channel I had the Grass Pig's tail get bit off. As we worked our way North out of the Western side of the channel I got a 12.75" keeper on a black/blue Piranha with a Chigger Craw trailer. We kept moving North. I got a 11" on the Chigger Craw. The wind came up and it started raining.
We moved to the South side of the Island and fished around the rock point. As we were working the windward side coming up on Paul and Hammer my boater Darren stuck the Lunker of the Day. That was the only fish we got in that area. We worked around the West side of the Island where I got a pike on an Okeechobee Craw Craw Fatty. We started down the East side and Darren missed a hit. I quickly landed a 14.75" in the same general area on the Craw Fatty. We pulled a little more off shore and I got a 14.25" and a 16.75" (2-6) also on the Craw Fatty. Darren picked up a couple of fish as well on Craw Tubes. I landed a short and a couple of pike and missed some hits. Darren got his limit. The action slowed. Darren switched to a Senko. He had a mule on, but his drag was too loose. He tightened it up to much and the fish broke him off as it jumped just out of reach of the net.
That kind of wrecked the mood in the boat as Darren was pissed off and I wasn't getting bit out there in the wind and rain. Also my upper back really started to be a pain. Darren did get another good fish on the Senko and maybe one or two more fish on it. I tried an Strike King Ocho and a couple of crankbaits. We finally bailed on the place with about an hour and a half left.
We tried a point where we had gotten a fish in prefish. Didn't get anything there. We moved in to try a few docks. I got a bad wind knot that put my Fluke Rod out of commission. That truly sapped my confidence. We tried another point where I got a pike on the bluegill Piranha. Darren got a fish that didn't help him. We worked some slop not getting a hit.
We hit the channel on the way in. I got a rock bass on the Craw Fatty and Darren got a small upgrade, but then he culled two fish leaving him one short of a limit. That error ended up costing him two places in the final standings.
Results: My 4 fish weighed 6lbs 9ozs and put me in 13th out of 15 anglers. Darren came in 6th Place with 12-6. Dennis Lothspeich as noted above was the winner and his fish weighed 14-9, beating Guy Henkensiefkin by 2 ozs. and Chuck Steinbauer by 3ozs
My Thoughts: Bottom line I didn't fish very well or intelligently. I skipped right past the Chigger Craw I had on to put on the Ocho. We were fishing a spot that was ideal for a football head jig. It didn't even enter my mind. I should have thrown a jerkbait as well. I allowed myself to get frustrated and mentally spun out.
I think it really would have helped if we would have had a marker buoy or two out. We were fishing far enough off shore and a school of fish was definitely there. Not having a marker buoy made us far less efficient. I was out there throwing blind.
I give myself a D for for that disappointing and depressing finish. I now haven't caught a limit in 3 straight tournaments.
Next Tournament South Long