When the second group of MLF pros hit Lake Fork on Saturday, many were wondering if fans would see another record-breaking bass during the General Tire Sage Three Presented by TrueTimber. Justin Atkins delivered with a 10-pound 8-ounce bass, beating MLF’s big-bass record by 4 ounces (set by Jason Christie the day prior in Qualifying Day 1). Atkins ended the day in third place, with 51 pounds.
Brandon Coulter is sitting in second place with 56 pounds. He caught 14 bass, the biggest being a 9-5. He’ll start Qualifying Day 4 just 1 pound behind first place Michael Neal. Coulter mentioned he’s excited because this is the first time he is in contention to win his Qualifying Round and advance straight to the Championship Round (a new MLF rule this season).
After a slow start on Lake Fork, Michael Neal found himself in first place at the end of Qualifying Day 2, with 57 pounds. Neal also took the lead during his first day of competition in the previous Bass Pro Tour event (Stage Two on Okeechobee), however, he zeroed during his second day on Okeechobee. Neal says he’s determined not to repeat that pattern, and he’ll be fighting for the automatic advancement to the Championship Round when he returns to Lake Fork on Monday.