Over the last 13 months, Tennessee native Ott DeFoe has competed in three MLF event in Texas and he won them all: The 2020 General Tire Stage Three, the 2021 Heritage Cup and most recently, the Toro Stage One Presented by Power-Pole on Sam Rayburn Reservoir.
DeFoe’s first MLF victory happened in March 2020. While most of the event took place on Lake Fork, the Championship Round happened on Lake Athens, where DeFoe dominated in the final period and finished the day with 23 bass for 69 pounds, 12 ounces. He scored bass on a variety of baits, including a jerkbait, topwater, and bucktail jig, but the crankbait bite is what sealed the deal for DeFoe.
Just a few months later, in October 2020, DeFoe competed in the Academy Sports + Outdoors Heritage Cup Presented by Magellan Outdoors, which took place on multiple lakes surrounding Waco, Texas. While Cup events are shot “in the dark” and edited for television, DeFoe’s Heritage Cup Championship Round winning episode ironically aired on Outdoor Channel while he was practicing for the 2021 Stage One, which he’d win just days later (you can watch the MLF Cup shows on-demand on MyOutdoorTV.com). The Championship Round took place on Lake Whitney, where DeFoe boated 18 bass for a total of 33-05 and beat Jeff Sprague by just one pound, one ounce.
When the Bass Pro Tour returned to Texas for the first Stage of the 2021 season, fans watched one of the most intense Championship Rounds in Bass Pro Tour history take place on Sam Rayburn. Luke Clausen had a slim lead over DeFoe in Period 3, but with just minutes left in the competition, DeFoe caught a couple 2-pounders that put him back in the lead. He ended the day with 30-02 over Clausen’s 27-05.