Hicks Tops Co-angler Field on Erie - Major League Fishing

Hicks Tops Co-angler Field on Erie

Virginia co-angler captures first title
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Justin Hicks Photo by Brian Lindberg. Angler: Justin Hicks.
August 29, 2015 • David A. Brown • Archives

At 8:30 a.m., Justin Hicks turned to the camera boat following him and Jared Rhode – who split the day-two lead with Dave Lefebre – and said: “I sure would like to win this.” Eight hours later, the young man from Roanoke, Va., lifted the first place trophy at the final Rayovac FLW Series Northern Division event hosted by the City of Sandusky and Lake Erie Shores & Islands Welcome Center on Lake Erie.

Tallying a three-day total of 59 pounds, 11 ounces, Hicks caught all of his fish by drop-shotting a Poor Boy Goby on a No. 1 Gamakatsu drop-shot hook. He fished his bait on 8-pound fluorocarbon and used a 1/2-ounce ball sinker.

Short casts to the rock humps he was fishing proved most effective for Hicks. His presentations were pretty standard, but a particular retrieve strategy seemed to impact his productivity.

Justin Hicks shows off a keeper.

“One thing I can say that I did differently than everybody else was I was just barely winding my bait,” Hicks says. “I wasn’t hopping it; I was just barely moving it [like a Carolina rig].”

After a blustery opening day, Lake Erie graced anglers with nearly flat water and mostly sunny conditions for day two. Today, conditions changed and brought choppier water with overcast skies.

“It was a little tougher today than it was during the week,” Hicks says.

Nevertheless, Hicks got off to a good start on the final day, with a limit by about 9:30. His first FLW victory had him beaming with pride.

“I’m overwhelmed,” says Hicks. “Words can’t express the way I feel right now.”


The rest of the top-10 co-anglers:

2. Rick Harkness — Roanoke, Va. — 57-15

3. Wayne Nelson — Caistor Centre, Ont. — 54-3

4. Arnold Payne, Jr. — Kokomo, Ind. — 53-12

5. Dennis Blakely — Norwalk, Ohio — 52-13

6. Keith Senenig — Jane Lew, W.V. — 48-1

7. Brian Ruetz — Toledo, Ohio — 45-10

8. Brian Kich — Berea, Ohio — 45-2

9. Vickie Maisch Rumer — Lima, Ohio — 41-3

10. Bryan Sisk — Glenelg, Md. — 40-6

Complete co-angler results can be found here.