TRENTON, Mich. – Charles Hasty was so certain that his five-fish limit weighed no more than 15 pounds that he took a $20 bet with boater Koby Kreiger. Suffice it to say that the Toledo, Ohio, competitor was all too pleased to pay up when his actual weight of 17-9 completed a four-day total of 67-1 and sealed the co-angler title at the Stren Series Northern Division event on the Detroit River.
“I had a bet with Koby because he told me that I had 17 pounds, but I said, `Man, I don’t even have 16 pounds,'” Hasty recalled. “He said, `I have a crisp, new $20 bill that says you have 17. I’ll give you $20 if you have less than 17.’ I ended up paying him.”
Kreiger and Hasty started their day fishing a flat in Lake St. Clair, but a north wind made the water too rough to fish, so they moved into the St. Clair River. “We could have probably stayed (on the flat) and caught all of our fish, but it was too bumpy. The wind died down inside the river because we weren’t out in the open.
“I got my (biggest fish) in the river – that was the whole ball game. If we hadn’t gone there, I wouldn’t have caught that fish, and I’m sure I wouldn’t have won.”
Adaptation was intrinsic to Hasty’s success. During the event’s three qualifying days, he used drop-shot and Carolina rigs. During the final round, he took a cue from other anglers.
“I had to throw tubes today,” Hasty said. “Several of the other pros around us on Lake St. Clair were whacking (the fish) on tubes, so I had to go with that. Whatever they’re on, you’re on.”
Second place went to Renee Hensley of Edwardsburg, Mich., who weighed 17 pounds, 3 ounces for a tournament total of 66-8. Hensley led the co-angler field on day two. Her tournament performance earned a third-place points ranking on the co-angler side of the Stren Series Northern Division.
Paired with boater Terry Baksay, Hensley fished weed patches in 14 feet of water in Lake St. Clair. She used a drop-shot rig with Poor Boy darters in mango-magic and copper-candy colors. Coincidentally, Hensley’s husband, Brian, finished second in the Pro Division.
Rest of the best
Lynn Baciuska Jr. of Afton, N.Y., took third place with 63-15 and rose to second place in the Northern Division points standing. Kris Thornton of Osceola, Ind., placed fourth with 63-11, and Jeffery Cox of Saline, Mich., was fifth with 63 pounds.
Rounding out the top 10 co-angler finishers at the Stren Series Detroit River event:
6th: Darren Heavner of Hartville, Ohio, 61-7
7th: Robert Case of Point, Texas, 57-5
8th: Robert Berta of Deerfield, Mich., 54-1
9th: Steve Lewis of Marcellus, Mich., 52-9
10th: Doug Caldwell of Kane, Pa., 52-8