Kennedy takes charge at West Point - Major League Fishing

Kennedy takes charge at West Point

EverStart Series Southeast pro probes shallow and deep for lead
Image for Kennedy takes charge at West Point
Steve Kennedy of Auburn, Ala., leads with 18 pounds, 3 ounces after day one of the EverStart Series Southeast event on West Point Lake. Photo by Rob Newell. Angler: Steve Kennedy.
May 18, 2005 • Rob Newell • Archives

VALLEY, Ala. – They are shallow. They are deep. They are everywhere in between. That’s the general consensus among pros regarding the whereabouts of bass in West Point Lake after the day-one weigh-in of the EverStart Series Southeast event.

Tournament leader Steve Kennedy of Auburn, Ala., had to do a little bit of everything today to put together his five-bass limit weighing 18 pounds, 3 ounces.

The pro started his day fishing deep in hopes of catching a few quick spotted bass and instead caught a nice surprise.

“I started on one of my spotted bass holes, and my co-angler caught a 5-pounder right off the bat,” Kennedy said. “A few minutes later I caught a 6-13, so that got the day off to a good start.”

With four bass in the livewell, Kennedy left his deep fish at about 10 o’clock and went to the bank to fish shallow.

“I caught a couple of good keepers off of a single stick up in shallow water,” he said. “I’m sure those were spawning fish. I’ve seen a lot of big bass cruising up shallow, but I’m not sure how to catch them.”

“I got a break today and didn’t have to hit all of my deep stuff,” he added. “I still have plenty of water left to fish. Hopefully those big bass will keep moving out to those deep places over the next couple of days.”

In addition to taking the lead in the tournament, Kennedy also took a commanding lead in the EverStart Series Southeast Division points race.

Powers back on `top’

After a slow Wal-Mart FLW Tour and EverStart Series season thus far, Craig Powers of Rockwood,Pro Craig Powers of Rockwood, Tenn., is in second place with 17 pounds, 12 ounces. Tenn., got back “on top” of his game today with a topwater lure that coaxed 17 pounds, 12 ounces of bass into his livewell for second place.

Despite the bright skies and slick waters, Powers stayed with a topwater all day.

“It doesn’t look like topwater weather, but I never put it down,” Powers said. “I caught my biggest bass with about 20 minutes to go out in the middle of nowhere in that bright sun.”

Powers ran about 30 pockets with his topwater today and caught fish in mere inches of water.

“Some of them were so shallow they couldn’t even jump when they got the bait,” he said. “The way these fish are biting makes absolutely no sense, but it’s working.”

Herren third

FLW Tour regular Matt Herren of Trussville, Ala., is having a whale of a season in 2005, and his good karma spilled over into the EverStart Series today with a five-bass limit weighing 16 pounds, 9 ounces, which put him in third place.

Gagliardi fourth

Pro Anthony Gagliardi of Prosperity, S.C., is in fourth place with 15 pounds, 15 ouncesAnthony Gagliardi of Prosperity, S.C., has earned the reputation of a savvy offshore fisherman over the last few years, but today he stayed shallow to catch 15 pounds, 15 ounces and grabbed fourth place.

“I’ve never been to West Point before, and I only had four days of practice, so I didn’t even bother looking for any offshore stuff,” Gagliardi said. “I saw a few fish shallow the first day of practice and just decided to stick with that for this tournament.”

A topwater also figured into Gagliardi’s catch today.

“I haven’t caught a keeper on topwater all week,” he said. “I started throwing one this morning while I was looking for spawners, and it produced my biggest fish, so I’ll probably do that a little more tomorrow.”

Ivie fifth

Holding down the fifth position is Hoyt Ivie of Thomaston, Ga., with 15 pounds, 12 ounces.

Big bassPro Bernie Miller of North Vernon, Ind., had the day one big bass in the Pro Division weighing 7 pounds, 2 ounces.

The big-bass award in the Pro Division, worth $675, went to Bernie Miller of North Vernon, Ind., for his bass weighing 7 pounds, 2 ounces.

Rest of the best

The following anglers round out the top 10 pros in the EverStart Series Southeast even on West Point Lake:

6th: Asa Godsey of Clewiston, Fla., 15-7

7th: Tommy Williams of Sherpherdsville, Ky., 15-1

8th: Mark Dove of North Vernon, Ind., 14-8

9th: Ricky Shumpert of Lexington, S.C., 14-4

10th: Patrick Pierce of Jacksonville, Fla., 14-1

Vanegmond leads co-anglers

Co-angler Tim Vanegmond of Gay, Ga., leads with 10 pounds, 15 ounces after day one of the EverStart Series Southeastern event on West Point Lake.Tim Vanegmond of Gay, Ga., leads the Co-angler Division of the EverStart Series Southeast event on West Point Lake with five bass weighing 10 pounds, 15 ounces. Vanegmond had the privilege of fishing with pro Craig Powers and noted that he learned a few things from Powers today.

“I’m a local on this lake,” Vanegmond said. “I fish here all of the time, and Craig showed me some stuff that I didn’t know.”

Specifically, Powers showed Vanegmond that bass would bite topwater baits all day on West Point, even on a bright, sunny day.

“Last night he told me we would throw topwater all day, and I thought he was kidding,” he said. “He wasn’t. We both threw it all day long, and we both caught fish all day long.”

Brad Knight of Wartburg, Tenn., only caught two bass today, but they were big onesCo-angler Brad Knight of Wartburg, Tenn., is in second place with 10 pounds, 6 ounces. weighing in at 10 pounds, 6 ounces for second place.

One of Knight’s bass weighed 5 pounds, 9 ounces, giving him the Co-angler Division big-bass award of $235.

Knight reported catching his two bass on a Carolina rig.

In the third position is Richard Mitchell of Appling, Ga., with 10 pounds, 3 ounces.

Brian Davis of Leesburg, Ga., holds down fourth with 10 pounds even, and James Barnick of Pembroke Pines, Fla., is in fifth with 9 pounds, 1 ounce.

Rest of the Best

The following anglers round out the top 10 co-anglers in the EverStart Series Southeast event on West Point Lake:

6th: Larry Myres of Alabaster, Ala., 8-10

7th: Johnny Pittman of Somerville, Ala., 8-8

8th: Edmond Brown of Trion, Ga., 8-3

9th: Terry Chapman of Cornelius, N.C., 7-14

10th: Wayne Colonna of Tallahassee, Fla., 7-12

Competition resumes Thursday at 6:30 a.m. at Southern Harbor Marina.