Smith Lake Day 4 Coverage - Major League Fishing

Smith Lake Day 4 Coverage

David Williams looks to lock it down
Image for Smith Lake Day 4 Coverage
Matt Arey Photo by Rob Matsuura. Angler: Matt Arey.
April 29, 2018 • MLF • Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit

Quick Links

Complete details

Get to know Smith Lake

William’s leading pattern

Top five patterns

FLW Live schedule

Complete results

Live weight estimates


3:03 Meyer and Davis culls

Cody Meyer is kinda rocking now – he just caught a 3-pounder and has rolled from somewhere below fifth back to third in the unofficial standings with more than 13 pounds. Clent Davis just culled as well, and has about 12 pounds in the ‘well now.


2:49 Cox has come down

John Cox just made the run back down toward the dam. We’ll see if he can sight up a giant on a bed or something in the last 40 minutes.


2:43 Becker has something dialed

Matt Becker just popped a 3-pounder and a 4-pounder swimming a Keitech out deep. Unofficially he’s got 13 pounds or so now and he’s rocketed from 10th to 6th on the tentative leaderboard. Dude may have just made himself some money in the last hour.


2:23 Meyer gets a good one

Cody Meyer is turning back on. You’ll never guess it, but he just caught a 3-pounder off a bridge to get to about 12.5 pounds.


2:02 We’re waiting

If someone makes an upgrade we’ll let you know. There have been some squeakers caught, but nothing that’ll help anyone in the last 20 minutes or so.


1:43 Meyer gets to 11

Cody Meyer ran back to a bridge and culled up to 11 pounds. Over the first two days it sure seemed like he’d stay strong throughout, but just getting to 11 pounds has been a real struggle for him today.


1:25 Reese and Davis cull

Jimmy Reese just swapped out a fish to gain a few ounces. Clent Davis made a cull as well, but it was for about a pound to get his total up over 11 pounds.


1:15 Reyes culls

Jason Reyes just made a decent cull with a 2+. Otherwise, not much is happening.


12:49 Becker has found a wad, Arey culls

Matt Becker has culled twice in the last 10 minutes, once by ounces and one by about a pound or so. He’s running pockets with a Fluke and seems to have found a bit of a pattern.

Matt Arey just culled up with a 3-pounder. He’s getting close to making a move for second over John Cox, but right now the Florida pro still has the edge.


12:45 Pizza time?

David Williams has been slow for a while and he’s now joking about coming back to the dock and ordering pizza. Odds are nobody delivers to Smith Lake Dam Access, but someone would for sure walk him a barbecue sandwich from the FLW Expo.

Currently, Williams has about a 6-pound lead, so ordering some ‘za might be safe.


12:40 Davis culls

Clent Davis swapped a 1-pounder for a 2-pounder to get his limit up past 10 pounds. Assuming everyone has a cull or two left in them the rest of the day, we should see the entire field weigh 10+ at weigh-in.


12:30 Becker and Reese

Matt Becker and Jimmy Reese have more room for improvement than many, but they are improving. Both anglers just added 2-pounders to the ‘well in the last five minutes.


12:19 Meyer culls

Cody Meyer added a 2-pounder to the livewell on a wacky rig down at the dam. He finally has 10 pounds.


12:16 Everyone has limits

Jimmy Reese and Matt Becker have both finished out small limits now. That’s everyone.


12:03 Reese gets another, Becker update

Jimmy Reese caught his fourth. It’s decent fish, but he’s not on the pace he set on day three to move into the cut.

Matt Becker just caught three in a row to get his limit up to four keepers. None of them are all that big, but he’s started throwing a fluke and a vibrating jig, which is markedly different from the Keitech game he’s been playing all week.


12:00 Not a lot is happening

It’s been pretty slow out there for a bit. Arey and Cox are really moving and grooving looking for a few big bites, and things have even slowed down for Williams.


11:33 Davis with a limit

This happened a bit ago, but Clent Davis has completed a small limit. He’s got one good one, but he needs to swap the rest out to make a move up.


11:33 Oh well…

David Williams got back in his little pocket and got one small one to blow on his frog and that was it. Alas.


11:29 Get to FLW Live

David Williams is about to get to his frog pocket. Fingers crossed for epicness.


11:20 Osborne makes a cull

Jordan Osborne culled up a tick with a 2-pound bass. He might be about to get on some fish.


11:16 Williams and Cox

David Williams has been slow for a while and says he’s going to go back to where he missed some on a frog the other day. Cox had a long stretch of nothing as well, but he just moved back to where he got bites when he first started in Ryan and lost one.


11:14 Auten culls

Todd Auten just culled out a 1-pounder with a 2-pounder. Otherwise, it’s been pretty slow of late.


11:00 Auten has a limit, Osborne farms one out

Auten has been in terrible service, but he’s got a limit. Unfortunately, it’s only about a 9- or 10-pound limit.

Casting at some schooling fish, Jordan Osborne just hooked up and lost a 3-pounder. Such is fishing.


10:50 Davis get no. 3

Clent Davis finally caught his third keeper. He had a sweet little flurry there early, but otherwise things have been pretty slow for him.


10:40 Arey culls

Matt Arey made another small cull a bit ago. He’s got over 12 pounds now for sure.


10:24 Osborne is about to hunt

Jordan Osborne has made a couple tiny culls, but mostly he’s seen some tough times recently. He just tried his honey hole for the third time today and has basically stuck out – he says he’s going to leave it for good soon and do some flipping or something in search of more quality.


10:15 Cox loses one

John Cox hooked and lost a 3-pounder in a bush. Such is life.


10:10 Reyes limits, Meyer culls

Jason Reyes just wrapped a limit up. He’s got almost 10 pounds and actually has started fishing shallow today.

Fishing a bridge, Cody Meyer just wrangled a nice 2+ spotted bass to improve on the day.


10:05 Arey culls

Matt Arey has been working a pretty nice swimbait/wacky combo today and just plucked a good spotted bass on the wacky. He culled up and has over 12 pounds in the livewell now.


9:56 Stripey

We just had a pretty good scare with a big striper on FLW Live with David Williams. He figured out it wasn’t a bass pretty quickly, but it was still very exciting.


9:53 Some bookkeeping for Cox

John Cox is unofficially in second now and he says he has a 4-pounder, two 3-pounders and two 2-pounders.


9:45 “Ballgame”

David Williams just caught another 3-pounder and said “ballgame” as he lifted it in. He swapped to a spinnerbait, but he’s still fishing his usual docks – it’s just wicked windy now. We’ve got Williams at 14 pounds now, but it wouldn’t be a surprise to find that he’s got a bit more than that.


9:42 Reyes, weather

Jason Reyes skipped a little swimbait up under a dock and came out with a 3-pounder for his third keeper.

Of note, the weather is still nice, but it’s very breezy.


9:30 Cox updates

John Cox is basically fishing in a forest in Ryan Creek and he’s pretty fired up. He’s swimming a jig around and just made another cull for a few ounces. We’ll see what happens with the rest of the folks and Williams, but he sure seems primed to move up today.


9:13 Cox is on a roll!

John Cox just filled out his limit with a 3+ and he’s feeling it. Cox has an easy 14 pounds in the boat now and the biggest limit of the day by far. Now, he’s still five pounds behind David Williams, but he’s doing about all he can do to catch up. As you might expect, he’s swimming and flipping a jig up shallow in flooded cover.


9:05 Williams culls again

David Williams has culled yet again. He’s got a decent breeze going on his docks and a nice 2+ spotted bass decided he wanted to play

Up Ryan, Cox has added a 3-pounder.

8:54 Arey and Cox

Matt Arey just filled out his limit with a 2-pounder. John Cox just put a pair of fish in the boat really quickly and they’re both solid 2-pounders.


8:45 Cox?

John Cox has run waaay up into Ryan Creek and is looking for some action. Also, David Williams relayed on FLW Live that he’s been putting Cox Juice on all his trailers this week.

Also, Cody Meyer has a limit now – he filled things out with a 2-pounder off a bridge.


8:35 We’ve had a flurry

Clent Davis just stroked a 4-pounder and then a small keeper to get his day started. Matt Arey picked up his fourth keeper. Finally, Jordan Osborne culled up by about a ¼ pound.


8:37 Auten and Cox

Todd Auten has gotten off to a pretty good start – he’s got four now for about 9 pounds. He’s in really spotty service, but we’ll keep up as best we can.

John Cox just caught his first – it’s a solid 3-pounder.  


8:23 Williams, Meyer, Becker

David Williams just culled up a little bit more. He’s got more than 11 pounds now.

Cody Meyer has four tiny fish now and Matt Becker just caught his first keeper.


8:07 Arey frogs one

Matt Arey just caught a 2+ on a frog in the back of a pocket. He’s got some good quality going today and has three in the boat now.


8:04 Williams is putting it away

David Williams just jigged up a 2+ for another cull and then culled again shortly after that. He’s got more than 10 pounds now and has crossed the 60-pound mark for his total.


7:58 Reese gets on the board

Jimmy Reese popped a solid keeper on a swim jig to get his day running.


7:50 Osborne culls, Williams sets the pace

Jordan Osborne just caught one close to 3 pounds to cull up. Meanwhile, David Williams has upgraded by about a pound as well – he seems to be finding his groove.


7:46 Williams upgrades

David Williams just caught a 2+ to cull out a tiny one. Four more like it and he may walk away with this thing.


7:43 Williams and Osborne limit

David Williams popped a little largemouth for his fifth.

Osborne has left his primary spot and started fishing nearby in flooded cover. He just put his fifth in the boat, which will go about 2 pounds. He’s on better quality this morning that Williams.


7:33 Meyer gets one

Cody Meyer has been fishing around takeoff all morning and struggling, but he just caught a dink and boxed it up.


7:26 Williams again

David Williams has four now – all skippers on the swim jig.


7:24 There we go

David Williams just caught his second and then his third on back-to-back casts. None of them are big, but he’s catching again.


7:20 So, everyone but Williams is catching

Matt Arey just sight-fished one off a bed with a wacky rig for his second keeper. Up the lake, Jordan Osborne has four already. Meanwhile, David Williams hasn’t caught another keeper yet and has had a few swings and misses. The weather is undeniably different this morning, with more sun and wind and less fog, but it sure seems like Williams should have had more success by now. 


7:11 Three now, more updates

Jordan Osborne is off to another good start. He’s got three now, but no lunkers.

Elsewhere, John Cox gave up on his bedding bass, but is still hunting near the dam. Also, Matt Arey’s fish came on his swimbait, which is a good sign for him.


7:05 Arey and Osborne

Fishing near takeoff, Matt Arey put a 2-pounder in the boat to get things started off. Up in Ryan, Jordan Osborne just put his first two in the boat – they’re keepers, but they’re small.


6:52 One for Reyes, Cox update

Swimming a Keitech out deep, Jason Reyes started off with a decent keeper. He’s got a real knack for that, but it took him all day to catch five yesterday. Maybe today will be better.

John Cox says the 4-pounders he saw on bed in the afternoon are gone. Plus side, he found another fish on a bed and he’s going to investigate that.


6:45 Williams strikes first

David Williams got on the board immediately with a small keeper to start things off. Even though Cody Meyer and John Cox started a few hundred yards from takeoff he still managed the first fish.




6:30 It’s David Williams’ day

So far, David Williams has been simply dominating the FLW Tour presented by T-H Marine on Smith Lake. With more than a 6-pound lead, something calamitous would have to happen for Williams to not win today.

Mostly fishing a jig on docks for bass chewing on spawning shad, Williams has stayed in a few pockets up Rock Creek the whole tournament and just smashed. It’s been a joy to watch on FLW Live as his skipping prowess is right up there and he’s catching a ton of fish.

The crew trying to beat each other and maybe catch Williams is pretty illustrious in their own right. In second, Jordan Osborne’s best spot seems played out, but he discovered a bit of a flipping bite in the afternoon on day three. In third, Matt Arey is probably going to spend most of the day with a swimbait in hand looking for largemouths to make a move. In fourth, you know Cody Meyer will be hard on the spotted bass game, and if there’s a 20-pound bag of spots out there he’d be the one to catch it. Finally, the most interesting man might be John Cox – he’s chilling in in fifth and saw a pair of 4-pounders on the bed at the end of day three. What he does today could be pretty interesting, but he’s going to need to really do it in style to run down Williams.

The thing to watch today is the changing bite. It seems like another wave of fish may be pushing up to spawn with the full moon, and the bass may finally be adjusting to the dropping water. So, while Williams seems pretty safe, there are going to be some opportunities out there.  



Temperature at takeoff: 47 degrees

Forecast high: 71 degrees

Sky: clear

Precipitation: 0 percent chance of rain

Wind: north at 8 mph

Water level: 512.77 Feet (tracker)


Tournament Details

Folgers Morning Takeoff: 6:30 a.m. CT at Smith Lake Dam Access, 7482 Smith Lake Dam Road, Jasper, Ala.

Weigh-in: Thursday and Friday at 3 p.m. CT at Smith Lake Dam Access and 4 p.m. ET Saturday and Sunday at Smith Lake Dam Access

FLW Expo: 12 to 4 p.m. ET Saturday and Sunday at Smith Lake Dam Access

FLW Live: Saturday and Sunday from 8:30 a.m. ET to 12:30 p.m. CT

Complete details