Fishing & Boating News
The Breckenridge, Texas, angler weighed in a five-bass limit of 17 pounds, 6 ounces to take over the pro division lead with 32-11 overall.
“Yesterday was kind of interesting,” the 24-year-old Lake Fork guide said. “I actually made about a 55-mile run, and my trolling motor cable broke 10 minutes into fishing.” So he drove his boat all the way back to the takeoff site, where the Mercury service crew repaired the troller motor. He then made the run back to his spot on the James arm, where he caught a 15-5 limit in about three hours of fishing.
“Today I thought I was going to have a full day to fish, and it was going to be awesome,” Sullivan said. The morning bite was slow for him, though, as he caught only a couple of small keepers.
However, his co-angler partner, Larry Foster, was catching bass, so Sullivan knew he was in the right area. “He started out putting it to me pretty good, and he ended up letting me use the right bait,” Sullivan said.
Although Sullivan was using the same type of lure, Foster was using a different color. “The color was everything there,” said Sullivan, who completed his limit after switching to Foster’s color.
Bassmaster Elite Series pro Mike McClelland took a trip down memory lane to move into second place with 30-15. “It’s really crazy sometimes how (fishing familiar places) will actually work for you,” he said. “What’s crazy about the ‘history’ I am fishing here is it is history from back when I was 13 or 14 years old.
“My grandmother and grandfather developed a piece of property on the lake, and I spent countless hours fishing in a little 14-foot aluminum V-bottom in the same creek I have been in and a couple of creeks close to that one,” McClelland said. “So when you understand the layout of the creek like that one, it makes it real easy to start patterning fish.” The Bella Vista, Ark., pro has been catching his bass each day on a Cabela’s 3.4 Swimmer, Spro McStick stickbait and Spro Rock Crawler crankbait.
The rest of the Top 5 pro division anglers include Roy Hawk, Lake Havasu City, Ariz., third place, 30-8; Ernie Stumpf III, Frisco, Texas, fourth, 28-13; and Drew Sloan, Scurry, Texas, fifth, 27-15.
Fishing with Bassmaster Elite Series pro Brian Snowden helped Mike Jones of Fayetteville, Ark., retain first place in the co-angler division with a total of six bass weighing 17-7. “Brian was great,” Jones said.
“When we got in the boat this morning, he told me he was going to do all he could to help me get my three fish, and he did it. He was rooting for me all day long.”
Stumpf leads in the pro division of the Phoenix Boats Big Bass Award with his 6-1 largemouth. The leader in the co-angler division of the Phoenix Boats Big Bass Award is Brian Murphy of Sulphur, La. with a 5-3 largemouth.
The host for this event is ExploreBranson.com. Saturday’s launch will be held at Table Rock State Park Marina at 6:30 a.m. CT. The final weigh-in will move to the Bass Pro Shops at 1 Bass Pro Shop Drive in Branson and will begin at approximately 3:30 p.m.
2017 Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Opens Series Title Sponsor: Bass Pro Shops
2017 Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Opens Series Platinum Sponsor: Toyota
2017 Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Opens Series Premier Sponsors: Huk, Humminbird, Mercury, Minn Kota, Nitro Boats, Skeeter Boats, Triton Boats, Yamaha, Berkley, Power-Pole, Shell Rotella
2017 Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Opens Series Supporting Sponsors: Livingston Lures, Lowrance, T-H Marine, Phoenix Boats, Shimano, Carhartt, Dick Cepek Tires & Wheels
B.A.S.S. is the worldwide authority on bass fishing and keeper of the culture of the sport, providing cutting edge content on bass fishing whenever, wherever and however bass fishing fans want to use it. Headquartered in Birmingham, Ala., the 500,000-member organization’s fully integrated media platforms include the industry’s leading magazines, Bassmaster website, television show (The Bassmasters), social media programs and events. For more than 45 years, B.A.S.S. has been dedicated to access, conservation and youth fishing.
The Bassmaster Tournament Trail includes the most prestigious events at each level of competition, including the Bassmaster Elite Series, Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Open Series, Academy Sports + Outdoors B.A.S.S. Nation presented by Magellan, Carhartt Bassmaster College Series presented by Bass Pro Shops, Costa Bassmaster High School Series presented by DICK’S Sporting Goods, Toyota Bonus Bucks Bassmaster Team Championship and the ultimate celebration of competitive fishing, the GEICO Bassmaster Classic presented by DICK’S Sporting Goods.
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