Jones goes into second day leading Bassmaster Elite Series stop on St. Johns River
Dustin Wilks in top 20
Texas' Alton Jones didn't give up any ground on the second day of the Bassmaster Elite Series stop on Florida's St. Johns River, extending his lead.
Yesterday (March 18), Jones brought in 22 pounds, 13 ounces, more than enough to repeat his Day One lead. His 49-6 total over two days put a distance of 7 pounds, 9 ounces, between him and J. Todd Tucker of Moultrie, Ga., who had 41-13 for second place. In third place with 40-0 was Terry Scroggins of Palatka, Fla., the hometown pro who has a rich history to tap into, and a seemingly infinite number of spots to go to up and down the river.
Rounding out the top five were Edwin Evers of Oklahoma and Billy McCaghren of Arkansas. Evers moved up from 20th and McCaghren from seventh place.
Rocky Mount pro Dustin wilks goes into the second day in 19th with 27-12.
Complete standings are available on Bassmaster.com.
The field is cut to the top 12 after today.
Daily big bass honors went to the angler who claimed sixth place, 2010 and 2011 Bassmaster Classic champ Kevin VanDam. His 9-5 beat McCaghren’s 9-4. Jason Williamson’s 10-3 of Thursday, however, remained as the Berkley Big Bass of the tournament so far.
The field was cut to the top 50 for Saturday’s competition. Only the top 12 will fish Sunday for a $100,000 first prize. The winner’s take also includes a 2012 Bassmaster Classic qualification. Elite anglers are also after points that count toward qualifying for the coveted 2011 Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year title and 2011 postseason, a winner-take-all, $100,000 contest.
Like most of the field, Jones is fishing for bedding bass, hitting a milk run of areas both days. He said he’ll go right back Saturday to the area that’s produced for him two days running.
“I left my first spot with a limit of only about 8 pounds, I went to my secondary area where I caught a 5-pounder yesterday, and got another 5-pounder today,” Jones said. “Then I went to a place I tried to go yesterday, but the way wind was blowing, you couldn’t see anything. It was basically empty today, but I did get my 8-7 there.”
He said he plans to go back to the spawning grounds he’s been working, a lake off the main St. Johns River, and he expects that the bounty of spawners will dwindle.
“It has been a sort of mass exodus, but they don’t all leave,” he said. “All it takes is one good female to pull up to give you a good day.”
Second-place holder Tucker pulled up from 11th place by remaining consistent; he had 21-5 Friday to build on his 20-8 of Thursday.
“I spent half of my day — until 12:30 with only three fish,” he said. “I stayed in my area, and let the fish show up and come to me. It’s more about having confidence in what you’re doing, and being patient. I’m banking on one or two big bites a day.”
His strategy is to quit trying for a fish that is showing signs she won’t bite. “I just leave her alone until she’s more comfortable,” he said.
Scroggins, who grew up fishing the St. Johns River, said he headed north Friday morning, hit a fog bank and turned around and went south. He simply tapped into another area he knew from past competitions would likely be productive.
His first stop was slow going — until he hooked and landed a 6-pounder.
“That kind of turned me on to something,” he said. “I really found something special.”
He said he lost a 7-pounder and a 4, and found a 10-pounder and 6-pounder that he could not get to hit his lure.
“They’re still sitting there, I know where they are,” he said. “I could have a really big bag tomorrow.”
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No one, including Howell really thought he had a shot.
“I didn’t expect to have the chance to win after the first day, and especially after yesterday,” Howell said.
But he whacked the bass today, putting 29 pounds, 2 ounces on the scales to seal the 2014 Bassmaster Classic championship and pocketing the $300,000 first-place prize.">Howell changes fishing area, claims 2014 Bassmaster Classic
Posted on February 23 at 8:45 pm by
“I went to cranking rocks this afternoon,” Cherry said.
That strategy yielded quick results, and the Bassmaster Elite Series pro built a 17-pound, 7 ounce stringer.
But it wasn’t enough to make the cut: Cherry wrapped up the tournament in 27th place, only two places out of the cut.">Cherry improves weight, misses Bassmaster Classic cut
Posted on February 22 at 8:47 pm by
Emcee Dave Mercer announced Evers needed 20 pounds, 9 ounces to claim the lead, and that’s exactly what the scales read.
The stringer brought Ever’s two-day weight to 47 pounds, 6 ounces.">Evers edges out Tharp for Day 2 lead in Bassmaster Classic
Posted on February 22 at 8:12 pm by
“The fish are in some places I haven’t seen them in five to seven years,” the Florida pro said. “Every time I fish a tournament here this time of year, I make a point to check these places — and the fish haven’t been there in years.”">Tharp leads after first day of Bassmaster Classic
Posted on February 21 at 8:45 pm by
“I had one pretty good day, and then I had two not-so-good ones,” Cherry said after leaving the weigh-in stage. “But after Wednesday I thought I was going to kill it;it was that good.”
Unfortunately, he was thrown a curve ball when a severe storm system rolled through the area and dumped inches of rain and kicked up high winds — a combination that turned all of Cherry’s spots to mud pits.">Cherry has tough day on Bassmaster Classic’s first day
Posted on February 21 at 7:28 pm by
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