HOT SPRINGS, Ark. – Boater Troy Morrow of Toccoa, Ga., caught a five bass limit weighing 16 pounds, 6 ounces Friday to capture the lead at the 2010 BFL All-American presented by Chevy on DeGray Lake. With a two-day catch of 10 bass weighing 30-2, he holds a commanding 4-pound, 12-ounce lead over his closest competitor, Tee Watkins of East Point, Ky., heading into the final day of competition.
“Things are going pretty good, but I am still losing some of those kicker fish and I just can’t let that happen tomorrow,” said Morrow, who is representing the Savannah River Division and fishing in his second BFL All-American. “I am covering a lot of water and let’s just say I am not fishing the shore.”
Not to jinx himself Morrow remained very close-mouthed about his style and baits used, however, he did indicate that he is doing a couple of different things that are giving him an edge and keeping him in the hunt. He is concerned that the expected higher-than-normal holiday boat traffic on the lake tomorrow may impact his fishing, but said he would just have to work through it.
Tee Watkins of East Point, Ky. caught a two-day total of eight bass weighing 25-6 to jump from 13th place to advance to the final round as the No. 2 seed.
The remaining top-10 boaters who will fish the final day at DeGray Lake are:
3rd: Richie Eaves, Nauvoo, Ill., 10 bass, 22-1
4th: Brandon Palaniuk, Rathdrum, Idaho, nine bass, 21-14
5th: Keith Green, Arkadelphia, Ark., nine bass, 21-14
6th: Ty Garrett, Pulaski, Tenn., nine bass, 21-4
7th: Chris Darby, Mount Ida, Ark., nine bass, 20-13
8th: Jason Grape, Southside, Ala., six bass, 19-4
9th: Shonn Goodwin, Moore, Okla., 10 bass, 19
10th: Jason Threadgill, Norwood, N.C., nine bass, 18-13
Overall there were 169 bass weighing 353 pounds, 12 ounces caught by 55 pros Friday. The catch included 16 five-bass limits.
Boaters in the All-American are competing for up to $130,000 plus a spot in the 2011 Forrest Wood Cup, the world championship of bass fishing.
Brett Rudy of Burlington, Iowa, leads the Co-angler Division with four bass weighing 15-6 followed by Randy Pierson of Oakdale, Calif., in second place with six bass weighing 13-14.
“I caught three toads today and I thought my heart would stop after each one of them,” said Rudy, who is making his first All-American appearance representing the Great Lakes Division. “I have got to thank my boaters, both of them put me on some fish and I can’t believe that I am leading this thing, unbelievable!
“We fished the same area most of the day, some shallow (5-10 feet) and some deep, over 25 feet. It’s unbelievable how clear this water is; this lake is packed with fish, you can see fish everywhere you go, it’s just a matter of getting them to bite.
Rudy was fishing with a Carolina rig most of the day, but indicated that he caught one of his 5-pound hawgs with a Texas rig.
Rudy caught one bass weighing 3-6 on Thursday while fishing with boater Eric Guimond of Standish, Maine. Today he caught his three hawgs while fishing with Jay Keith of Camden, S.C.
Rounding out the top-10 co-anglers are:
3rd: Ben Due, Mauston, Wis., seven bass, 13-11
4th: Matt King, Olathe, Kan., seven bass, 12-4
5th: Ray Holloway, Snellville, Ga., six bass, 10-11
6th: David Hamilton, Rogers, Ark., four bass, 9-15
7th: Jeremy Rasnick Point Lookout, Mo., seven bass, 9-11
8th: Charlie Russler, Falling Waters, W.Va., six bass, 8-12
9th: Jerry Pyles, Middletown, Md., six bass 8-5
10th: Adam Williamson, Ridgeway, S.C., five bass, 7-7
Co-anglers are competing this week for up to $60,000 and for a coveted spot in the 2011 Forrest Wood Cup.
Overall there were 76 bass weighing 143 pounds, 9 ounces caught by 55 co-anglers Friday. The catch included only three five-bass limits.
Anglers will take off from Spillway Ramp located at 284 Skyline Drive in Arkadelphia at 7 Saturday morning. Final weigh-in will be held at the Summit Arena beginning at 3 p.m. just prior to the final weigh-in for the FLW Tour tournament taking place on Lake Ouachita.
Fans will be treated to the FLW Outdoors Expo at the Hot Springs Convention Center on Friday from 4 – 9 p.m. and Saturday prior to the final weigh-in from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. There will be a drawing for a Can-Am ATV and rod and reel combos will be given to the first 300 kids under 14 in attendance on Saturday. The FLW Outdoors Expo includes Ranger boat simulators, the opportunity to interact with professional anglers, enjoy interactive games, activities and giveaways provided by sponsors, and learn more about the sport of fishing and other outdoor activities. All activities are free and open to the public. For a full schedule of events, additional information and to register for the ATV, visit FLWOutdoors.com/chevyopen.
Coverage of the BFL All-American tournament will be broadcast in high-definition (HD) on VERSUS. “FLW Outdoors,” will air Nov. 28 from 12:30 to 1:30 ET. “FLW Outdoors,” hosted by Jason Harper, is broadcast to approximately 500 million households worldwide.
ABOUT FLW OUTDOORS
FLW Outdoors, named after Forrest L. Wood, the legendary founder of Ranger Boats, is the largest fishing tournament organization in the world offering anglers worldwide the opportunity to compete for millions over the course of 189 tournaments in 2010. FLW Outdoors has also taken fishing mainstream with FLW Fantasy Fishing awarding the largest prizes in the history of fantasy sports. FLW Outdoors memberships are available featuring numerous benefits including Player’s Advantage. For more information about FLW Outdoors and its tournaments, visit FLWOutdoors.com or call (270) 252-1000. For more information about FLW Fantasy Fishing, visit FantasyFishing.com.