Lake Ouachita Day 3 Coverage - Major League Fishing

Lake Ouachita Day 3 Coverage

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Clent Davis Photo by Andy Hagedon. Angler: Clent Davis.
Time to settle the score at the 2018 Cup
August 12, 2018 • MLF • Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit

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Live leaderboard – click here

FLW Live show – click here

Tournament details – click here

Everything you need to know about the Cup – click here

Wes Logan's day 2 pattern – click here

Top 5 patterns day 2 – click here


2:40 p.m. – Thanks for following

The top 10 pros have about 50 minutes left to fish before their final check-in time. Clent Davis certainly stole the show, but it's most definitely not over. Yesterday, the 2 o'clock hour was one of the most productive of the day, and there are at least three pros who are only a couple quality bites away from catching Davis.

We're going to close the blog down now. Thank you so much for following along this week on Lake Ouachita. You can tune in to see the final weigh-in live at 5 p.m. 

The FLW coverage blog will go live again this November at the Costa FLW Series Championship on Lake Guntersville. Please join us then. 


2:10 p.m. – Niggemeyer fills his limit

James Niggemeyer has five in the box now. His fifth isn't very big, but that has him neck and neck with Justin Atkins for second place. He needs a couple culls and he could catch Davis. LeBrun also caught one a moment ago. He's got three in the box.


2:05 p.m. – Atkins misses a good one; it's raining

Sorry for the delay in updates. A lot has transpired.

First off, it's raining on much of the lake. Our reporters have also encountered some hail. No strong reports of a change in the fishing, however.

Justin Atkins had a good one hooked up and dumped it on the way to the boat. That fish could've been a game change. 

Clent Davis swung by his best brush pile in the middle of the storm. No bites, despite it still being loaded with fish. The Ouachita bass are incredibly tough to catch, even when you find them. The leader has since moved to some shallower brush. You can actually see where someone cut the trees and dragged them out. There's more brush on the bank drying out and waiting to be added to the piles. 

Also, don't forget that if you're in the Hot Springs area, there's a free Justin Moore concert in the Bank OZK Arena at 4 p.m. Swing by and enjoy the show.


1:23 p.m. – LeBrun gets another

Nick LeBrun's second keeper still has him a long way back, but with three more to go until he's limited, the All-American pro could certainly close the gap and make it interesting. 

Yesterday the afternoon bite was huge, particularly for John Cox and Wes Logan. If soeone could find that afternoon hot streak, this could get interesting real fast. 

The topwater program up shallow is the most popular pattern among the top 10 right now. Other than that, fishing big worms, swimbaits and drop-shots in the brush is working. That's what Davis is doing. 

Some cloud cover has settled over parts of Lake Ouachita. Maybe a new bite window will open up for the anglers in the final hours. They check in at 3:30 p.m. We'll keep the blog rolling until about 2:30. 


VIDEO: Check out John Cox in action on day 2


1:03 p.m. – Logan gets a couple bites; Davis saving the juice

Wes Logan finally got a couple bites. They just weren't from keepers. He's really struggling. Currently, he's fishing a brush pile that he previously shared with Clent Davis. 

Davis, meanwhile, reports that he's saving the brush pile where he caught his 5-pounder and plans to hit it again later. Apparently it was loaded up with fish this morning.

James Niggemeyer made another move. Still working backs of pockets.

Justin Atkins has also landed in a new area. He's dealing with some type of mechanical issue, though it doesn't seem to be hindering him too much.


12:42 p.m. – Atkins about to run

Nothing ever came of Clent Davis' brush pile bass. He's still firing away at them though. Meanwhile, his next closest competitor, Justin Atkins, is about to leave the South Fork, which is where he's been all day long. He told our reporter that he has no idea where he's going to go.

On FLW Live, we heard Atkins and Jason Lambert talking about their limits and their strategies. Same for James Niggemeyer earlier. None of them has any idea of the kind of day that Davis has had. They all think a limit in the neighborhood of 10 pounds could earn the win. They're wrong. Only Wes Logan and Nick LeBrun could give Davis a run with a weight like that. Davis really has raised the bar in this derby.


12:29 p.m. – Clent Davis has found some good ones … stand by

Clent Davis just told the live crew that he saw some big ones (and quite a few fish) on his graph on the edge of a brush pile. He's slinging a big swimbait and a big worm, but hasn't been able to get them to bite yet.

Jason Lambert just culled up witha  2 1/4-pound fish that he caught on a Plopper. He's still holding tight at fourth place.


12:20 p.m. – FLW Live "extended cut" today

Good news: The popular FLW Live program is extending its coverage of the final day of the 2018 Forrest Wood Cup. Hosts Travis Moran and Rob Newell will be broadcasting until 1 p.m. 

Tune in via the link above if you want to see the pros in action.


12:12 p.m. – A little moving going on

Just Atkins just hooked his spoon on his reel and is making a move. He needs a couple good ones if he wants to become a back-to-back Cup champion. He's fished most of the tournament up the South Fork of the Ouachita. A tail spinner, drop-shot, spoon and various other offshore and schooling baits have gotten him this far. It'll be interesting to see if he makes a change and goes to the bank to try and close it out.

James Niggemeyer also made a short move farther into the back of a creek. We figure he'll make a few thousand more casts with a buzzbait here as well. He's really living and dying by that approach.

Nick LeBrun had another chance to close the gap, but unfortunately he dumped one in the lily pads. He's gotta find more opportunities and fish clean the rest of the day if he wants to win this derby.

Clent Davis made a pitstop at the Subway on the lake to pick up some more ice. Caring for his fish is critical in a tournament this close. He's back out getting after it now. 

Jason Lambert is back to plopping on the bank. He gave up his offshore program to go hunting bigger fish. 

Today has been stifling hot, but the thunder is booming in the distance, suggesting we might see some pop-up storms around Lake Ouachita. Anything that provides cooling relief would be much appreciated for sure.


11:50 a.m. – Niggemeyer keeping it close; Cox gets another

James Niggemeyer is plugging along, trying to keep pace with Clent Davis. He put No. 4 in the box. He's still on the buzzbait pattern that got him here. There's some thunder rumbling in the distance, with a chance of storms this afternoon. We'll see if that helps or hurts him in his quest.

John Cox landed his third keeper. He definitely wants the overcast skies. His best luck has come in those conditions all week. 

Nick LeBrun just ran to Blakely. He's going to fish there and then go to the cool lily pad spot he fished for a good chunk of the day yesterday.


11:38 a.m. – Make it five for Davis

Clent Davis is rolling now. He just landed a 2 3/4-pounder on a swimbait, and is now working toward on the biggest limit of the tournament. He's set the bar high, and now he's raising it. With so much time to fish, anyone could still catch him, but he could also put some more ground between him and everyone else. 

"There'll be no more spinning pole today," he said. "It's all about catching another 4-pounder. Probably with that Mister Twister worm right there."

Could this be Clent Davis' week? 


11:15 a.m. – Davis lands another

Clent Davis finally managed to get one of the schoolers to bite. It looks like a 1 3/4-pound fish. That'll bump up his lead. Davis is getting more and more excited with every catch.

Atkins went on that tear and then hooked up with what looked to be another good one. It was a catfish. He's still in second.

Jason Lambert has finished his limit with a small keeper. We have him in fourth place but just ounces behind James Niggemeyer, who's in third.

Nick LeBrun is still flipping away in the grass. He took a short break to toss a swimbait but then went right back to the flipping approach.


10:45 a.m. – Now Atkins has a limit

Justin Atkins is heating up big time. He put a 2-pounder and a 2 1/2-pounder in the livewell. That's a limit of 9 pounds, and now he's in second place by about a pound behind Clent Davis. Wow, this thing just keeps knotting up in all different ways.


10:40 a.m. – Atkins gets another

Justin Atkins caught a 1 1/2-pounder for his third keeper. He's still chipping away at a small limit before eventually running shallow to try for some better quality bites.

Our leader Clent Davis has moved into even deeper water – about 30 feet. He was throwing a swimbait when some schoolers came up, and he spent 15 or 20 minutes trying to get them to bite. No such luck.

Wes Logan is rotating back and forth between a buzzbait and prop bait. He's trying to find what'll trip their trigger.

James Niggemeyer is still buzzing away. He seems to be a little farther off the bank than some of the others and is fishing some flatter banks. A lot of his fish have been out in scattered timber. 

Luckily, there's a little it of cloud cover again. That adds a little creature comfort on what has been a sweltering day.


10:25 a.m. – LeBrun on the board; Logan on the move

Nick LeBrun's first keeper is a 1 1/2-pounder. That ain't much, but it's a start. If he can get those grass fish to ignite he just might get back in the hunt here.

Wes Logan is running and gunning and trying to find a pocket where he can make it happen. 


10:12 a.m. – Make it three for Niggemeyer

James Niggemeyer is really heating up. He just put another 2-pounder in the livewell. He's less than 3 pounds back of Clent Davis. 

Nick LeBrun is dropping a rig into some deep grass in search of the caliber of fish that could win this tournament for him. It's a major big-fish pattern, but getting a lot of bites isn't easy to do. 


10:00 a.m. – Niggemeyer has two

James Niggemeyer has landed two keepers. He's back near the top of the standings, but still a good chunk behind Clent Davis.

Davis says he spent all of practice trying to figure out the deep timber bite without much luck. He's spent the tournament fishing brush piles he located in pre-practice. The big worm has been his best tool, but he's also mixing in a finesse worm on a spinning rod. 

Zack Birge's two keepers put him in the top five. Brandon Cobb has just one, a 2-pounder.


9:39 a.m. – Lambert is trying to catch Davis

Jason Lambert caught his fourth fish. It's another little one. Our estimates have him at a shade more than 4 pounds behind Davis. 


9:36 a.m. – More on Davis

Clent Davis has ignored the shallow bite. He's committed, at least for now, to fishing deep brush piles. Rob Newell reported on the live show that Davis has about 1,000 brush piles marked on this lake. He's fishing a Texas-rigged Mister Twister Buzz Worm. It looks like plume or red bug. Go ahead and get your Tackle Warehouse order in. 


9:34 a.m. – Niggemeyer lands No. 1

James Niggemeyer is now on the board with a small keeper. His fish are coughing up crawfish in the livewell. Maybe that's a clue he can use to figure these fish out on what has been a very tough morning. 


9:27 a.m. – Clent Davis is hammering them!

Clent Davis, who had a 2 1/2-pounder in the boat until about 9:20, just pounded a 5 and another 2 1/2. He's up to 10 pounds today and 29 total and is the unofficial leader at this point. He's fishing deep with a red Texas-rigged worm. We have an FLW Live camera and another photographer headed to him right now to see if he can pull off the 10th-to-1st comeback. 

Stay tuned, because Davis is on fire right now. 


9:08 a.m. – Lambert has them fired up

Here comes Jason Lambert. He's got a school fired up now, and has landed a couple shorts plus his third keeper. We're calling his weight at 3 3/4 pounds today, and just shy of 30 for three days. He's the unofficial leader. 

Wes Logan, meanwhile, is starting to show his frustration. There are fish schooling all around him, yet he can't get them to bite. Judging by his demeanor on FLW Live, he might be in a little bit of trouble. 

Zack Birge is apparently dealing with a mechanical issue that is making life hard for him. We're looking for an update, but it sounds like he might be confined to the trolling motor. 


8:54 a.m. – Is the slow morning turning around?

We just heard of a little bit of action. Jason Lambert landed his second keeper. It's small.

Wes Logan saw a 5-pounder cruising down the bank. "She looked pretty swimming away," he said. 

LeBrun has been hunting schoolers for a while now. He's seeing them, but can't get one to bite. It only takes a couple casts to turn that schooling game around though.


8:35 a.m. – Lambert gets one; Niggemeyer dumps one

Jason Lambert's first fish was a 1 1/2-pound bass. He followed up with back-to-back catfish. "You want this hole?" he asked his buddy Justin Atkins, who is fishing nearby. "It's the catfish hole."

James Niggemeyer changed up a little bit. He put the buzzbait down and picked up a spinning rod. Unfortunately, the first one he caught, he lost while flipping it in the boat. That's a potential $300,000 error.

Wes Logan claims he just saw 12 pounds swimming down the bank.


8:17 a.m. – Cobb gets a good one

Brandon Cobb is on the board with what his marshal called "a nice one." We're getting a more accurate weight estimate momentarily.

John Cox has his second keeper. His total is around 2 1/2 pounds.

Justin Atkins also has two. He's got about 3 pounds. He and Jason Lambert are chatting openly about the situation and sharing advice. 

Jason Lambert is still hunting his first. "There were just a couple of them there. I don't know where they went," he says.

James Niggemeyer hasn't even had a bite yet. 


8:01 a.m. – Lambert and Atkins sharing some water

Jason Lambert just arrived in the South Fork area where Atkins has been fishing. He's been in here all week too. These two have shared some water for three days. It's pretty amazing how they've been able to track down the same deal. They're both hoping for 9 or 10 pounds off this area. Then they're going to move to the bank and hunt bigger bites. 

Bradford Beavers now has his second keeper in the well. 


7:55 a.m. – Cox moves; Logan predicts his morning

John Cox has rolled up to the Ouachita River. He's in the Avant area now and working a different walking bait. 

Leader Wes Logan's confidence doesn't seem to be very high right now. "If I get a bite before noon I'll be doing good," he told our cameraman. 


7:45 a.m. – Clent Davis scores big

The biggest fish of the morning so far is in the livewell of Clent Davis, who just landed a 2 1/2-pounder. He's fishing a worm in very deep water. That one fish bumps him up into third place, which just helps to illustrate how tight this field is.


7:41 a.m. – Cox has one

John Cox has his first keeper. That's two bites already for him. Justin Atkins is throwing a Wing Ding tailspinner for schoolers, but most of his action has been from white bass. He thinks they're mixed in. You can watch him on the FLW Live show right now. 

Jason Lambert is already on the move. He's likely running up the South Fork. That's where he's spent most of the week. 


7:28 a.m. – Beavers on the board

Bradford Beavers is the first to catch a bass. It's a 1-pounder. He made a stop close to the ramp, sort of on a hunch, and it paid off. 

Wes Logan began his day fishing shallow in the South Fork of the Ouachita with a prop bait. Jason Lambert has changed up his strategy. He's throwing a Plopper up in the Blakely area around timber that's 5 to 15 feet deep. John Cox is also plopping in the Crystal area. LeBrun is throwing a Plopper around some docks in a marina.


7:15 a.m. – Here we go

It's showtime at Lake Ouachita. The final day of the 2018 Forrest Wood Cup is underway. Tonight, we'll crown a champion.

Day three looks like it'll present anglers will a slightly different challenge, mostly due to Mother Nature. The sky is overcast, with a chance of storms and precipitation building throughout the day. We know at least one angler is stoked about the change. John Cox says he had his best luck in practice on the final day, with similar conditions. The overcast skies really ignited his shallow bite. He's already had a bite this morning. It wasn't a keeper, but it was a good sign for him.

For leader Wes Logan, we'll just have to wait and see. His shallow pattern hasn't been consistent. His deep pattern, while more reliable for bites, isn't kicking out big fish. 

In fact, pretty much everyone in the top 10 has been struggling with inconsistency, which is what makes today so exciting. The weights are packed together, and every pro in the top 10 could either crack 'em, or bomb. 

It's anyone's Cup to win. 



Temperature at takeoff: 75 degrees

Forecast high: 88 degrees

Sky: cloudy

Precipitation: 15 percent chance and growing throughout the day; chance of thunderstorms

Wind: SSW at 6 mph


Tournament Details

Folgers Morning Takeoff: 7 a.m. CT at Brady Mountain Resort & Marina, Corp of Engineers Launch Facility

Weigh-in: 5 p.m. CT Bank OZK Arena

FLW Expo: 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. CT at Hot Springs Convention Center

FLW Live: 6:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. CT