Howell’s Lead Shrinks to a Pound - Major League Fishing

Howell’s Lead Shrinks to a Pound

South Carolina pro survives tougher second day; it’s anyone’s game tomorrow
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Daniel Howell Photo by Matt Pace.
April 6, 2018 • MLF • Toyota Series

Santee Cooper is one of those rare places where catching 18 pounds on the second day of a tournament could be considered leaving the door open.

Consider the plight Daniel Howell of Prosperity, S.C. On day one of the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division tournament presented by Bass Pro Shops and hosted by the Clarendon County Chamber of Commerce, he caught a tremendous 30 pounds, 6 ounces to take the lead by 3-7, then backed it up today with 18 pounds. He now only leads by a single pound.

Welcome to Santee Cooper.

With only about 7 pounds now separating first from 10th going into the final day tomorrow, the trophy for this event is still available to anyone in the top 10.

“The way this place is fishing, I was shocked I kept the lead with 18 pounds today,” Howell says. “I really thought I only had 15 pounds, and I was seriously worried about not even making the top 10. That’s the way this place makes you start thinking, like, ‘If I don’t have 25 a day, I won’t even make the top 10.’”

Howell’s slower day was a result of his “frog hole” not producing any giants like it did yesterday.

“I started the day in a shad spawn place just to get a quick limit,” Howell says. “Then I fished some other stuff and couldn’t catch much to help me. So I went back into my frog hole, and I’m afraid it’s toast. It gave me two big ones yesterday, but nothing today. I was really hoping to save it for tomorrow, but I tried it today, and I think that deal is over.”

Howell spent the rest of his day “just fishing.” He spent some of his time in the lower end of the upper lake with no improvement to his weight, so he thinks he’ll scrap that for tomorrow.

“I think my chance to win is up the lake, so that’s where I’m spending all my time tomorrow,” he adds. “The right ones live up there, so that’s where I’m going to stay.”


Top 10 pros

1. Daniel Howell – Prosperity, S.C. – 48-6 (10)                 

2. Ronnie McCoy – Lamar, S.C. – 47-6 (10)                       

3. Robert Crosnoe – Inverness, Fla. – 46-6 (10)               

4. Jonathan Canada – Pelham, Ala. – 46-0 (10)               

5. Bryan Thrift – Shelby, N.C. – 45-14 (10)                      

6. Joey Sabbagha – Prosperity, S.C. – 45-0 (10)               

7. Mark Hutson – Moncks Corner, S.C. – 42-3 (10)                      

8. Kent Ware – Guntersville, Ala. – 41-11 (10)                

9. Buddy Gross – Chickamauga, Ga. – 41-9 (10)              

10. Lex Costas – Daniel Island, S.C. – 41-7 (10)

Complete results


McNeill dominating co-angler division

While the pro tournament is still a heated contest, the battle on the co-angler side is extremely lopsided in favor of Spencer McNeill, who’s now led the tournament for both days.

After catching 20-13 yesterday, McNeill added another 19-4 today for a two-day total of 40-1. He now enjoys a lead of more than 13 pounds going into the final day.

Top 10 co-anglers

1. Spencer McNeill – Ladson, S.C. – 40-1 (10)                  

2. Keith Westrick – Dallas, N.C. – 26-11 (8)                      

3. Jim Short – Ocean Pines, Md. – 23- 5 (6)                      

4. James Wegmann – Fruitland Park, Fla. – 22-8 (10)                

5. Dearal Rodgers – Camden, S.C. – 22-5 (8)                    

6. Gerald Bozeman – Sylvester, Ga. – 21-11 (9)               

7. Coulby Lewis – Macon, Ga. – 21-5 (8)               

8. Mark Lamb – Wake Forest, N.C. – 20-13 (6)                 

9. Shawn York – Sarasota , Fla. – 20-8 (8)            

10. Brian Scott – Sumter, S.C. – 19-7 (7)

Complete results


Tournament information

Tournament details

Day 2 takeoff photo gallery

Day 2 OTW photo gallery

Day 2 weigh-in photo gallery