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Posted By The Bass Hog

elite series logo

OKEECHOBEE, Fla. — When Ish Monroe wins in the Bassmaster Elite Series, he goes big.


Monroe of Hughson, Calif., won the Power-Pole Slam Sunday on Lake Okeechobee with a four-day total of 108 pounds, 5 ounces. It was his second Elite Series win. His first, six years ago on Lake Amistad in the inaugural event of the newly formed series, was also by more than 100 pounds — 104-8 to be exact.


“Winning with over 100 pounds is awesome,” said Monroe, who took home $100,000 and an instant-in for the 2013 Bassmaster Classic. “I really wanted to break my own record today, and it feels really good.”


His Sunday check pushed his Bassmaster career earnings to more than $1 million. Weighing more than 100 pounds of bass over four days gave him a second entry in what’s known as the B.A.S.S. Century Club, an exclusive group of Bassmaster Elite Series pros who have busted the mark.


Monroe’s performance at the Power-Pole Slam was a complete turnaround from his 96th-place finish at last week’s Elite Series event on the St. Johns River, which Monroe called “a mental screw-up” and a wrong turn in his quest to qualify for the 2013 Classic.


“The pressure’s off now; I’m in the Classic. My deal coming here was I was going try for an Elite Top 12 at every event to make sure I got there,” said Monroe, who had missed several Classic qualifications in a row before he got back in in 2012.


Although Monroe scored a wire-to-wire win, and twice had big leads, victory wasn’t a sure thing for him on Sunday, when he started the day with a 10-ounce lead over 2012 Bassmaster Classic champ Chris Lane, a Florida native who now lives in Guntersville, Ala.


“Chris Lane is the best in the world right now, and having him on my back was a scary feeling,” Monroe said after bringing 30-15 to the scales Sunday. His margin of victory was 12 pounds, 12 ounces, over Lane, who finished in second place with 95-9.


Monroe began the tournament Thursday with what proved later to be the event’s largest sack: 34-5. He led that first day by 8-12 over the pro in second place, South Carolina’s Davy Hite. It was the largest Day 1 lead in Elite Series history. Monroe followed up Friday with 24-25 and widened his leader’s margin to 13-11, this time over Lane. It was the largest Day 2 lead in Elite Series history.


Then Monroe ran into trouble Saturday. Lane smashed 31-3, deflating Monroe’s big cushion to just 10 ounces.


“When he came in with that big sack on Day 3, it hurt because I would have loved to have gone into today with a 14-pound lead. Who doesn’t want to go in with a 14-pound lead on the last day? But it also made me step up my game,” said Monroe, who now has four wins on his Bassmaster record.  


Monroe said his tackle for Okeechobee was a dark blue D Bomb Bruiser Flash by Missile Baits rigged on a 1-ounce locally made Medlock jig, or a 1 to 1 1/2-ounce River2Sea Trash Bomb that had a punch skirt and 5/0 punch hook. He said he used 70-pound Daiwa Samurai Braid and an 8-foot Daiwa flipping stick he designed.

Courtesy of BASS Communications.

Posted By The Bass Hog


elite series logo

Final day sets up as Ish vs. Chris


OKEECHOBEE, Fla. — Nothing short of a heroic effort Saturday could have knocked Ish Monroe of Hughson, Calif., off his lead of 13 pounds, 11 ounces in the Bassmaster Elite Series Power-Pole Slam on Lake Okeechobee.


Meet Chris Lane, almost-hero. He brought 31 pounds, 3 ounces, to the scales Saturday and put it up against Monroe’s 18 pounds, 2 ounces. The result was Monroe, 77-6, Lane 76-12. Suddenly, after trailing Monroe from afar after two days, Lane was only 10 ounces behind.


That set up Sunday’s finale to be the Ish vs. Chris showdown for $100,000 and an instant qualification for the 2013 Bassmaster Classic.


Even the third-place pro after three days, Skeet Reese of Auburn, Calif., with 62-4 was 15-2 behind Monroe. Shaw Grigsby of Gainesville, Fla., jumped up into fourth from 41st place with a big day of 30-7 and 56-13 overall, but still 20-9 in back of Monroe. Fifth with 56-8 was Terry Scroggins of San Mateo, Fla., trailing Monroe by 20-14.


Monroe said his productive area is getting pressured, and the wind direction shifted, so he’ll make one pass there Sunday, then move on to new water if nothing much happens for him.


“Today I started out catching them quickly,” he said. “But when boats travel through there, they (fish) get a little skittish. They had been biting really hard the first couple days. Today they bit a lot lighter — a real sensitive bite — so I tried to move away when people got around me.”


His presentation remains the same, and simple, he said: flipping the D Bomb creature bait on a jig, “putting it right there where they live.”


Fans are invited to the Power-Pole finale on Sunday. The 7:30 a.m. ET launch and 4 p.m. ET weigh-in will be at C. Scott Driver Recreation Area in Okeechobee. will continue to cover the tournament with live streaming of the weigh-in, real-time leaderboard, photo galleries, BASSCam videos, BASSTrakk catch reports, and more, including the new, live War Room. It features BASSTrakk analysis on the hour from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. ET.


All online access and all Bassmaster fan activities are free and open to the public.


Courtesy of BASS Communications.

Posted By The Bass Hog
“The BWS is like fishing in a professional bass tournament at a fraction of the cost,” said legendary angler Ray Scott, founder of the Bass Angler Sportsman Society. “The championship pays the winning boater $100,000 cash and possibly another $105,000 in sponsor bonuses. In addition, that person qualifies to fish the Bassmaster Classic. The champion co-angler wins $50,000 cash and potentially another $52,500 in sponsor bonuses. Throughout the year, the tour has impressive payouts with single events paying the winning boater as much as $13,000. It’s a great program and is perfect for both the up and coming bass angler and the seasoned veteran.”
The Maryland Division 21 of the Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Weekend Series, operated by American Bass Anglers, opens its 2012 season March 17 on the Potomac River.
The anglers will run out of the Smallwood State Park Marina, located at 2750 Sweden Point Road in Marbury. The priority entry deadline is Feb. 26, 2012, with late fees beginning on March 7, 2012. Registration will take place at Smallwood State Park beginning at 4 p.m. on Friday, March 16, 2012.
One of the most historic rivers in North America, the Potomac runs 383 miles from the mountains of West Virginia to Chesapeake Bay.
Many anglers fish the grass beds on the river. Grass helps filter murky water. Around grass beds, work white spinnerbaits, weightless flukes or rattling baits parallel to weed lines. Some anglers also punch through thick grass mats with heavy black and blue or black neon jigs. Anglers may still find some spawning bass on beds in backwater creeks.

Tides dominate the lower Potomac River, often pushing brackish water far up the channel from the bay. Typically, high tides bring in salty water and chase bass deeper inland. Falling tides pull fresh water from tributaries so bass move out into main channels. Tidal current can also dislodge forage species and spark feeding activity. During a falling tide, fish the mouths of small channels that empty into the main river where bass stack up to snack on anything washed down to them. Throw a weightless Texas-rigged fluke, shrimp or other soft-plastic temptation up the channel and let the current pull it downstream.


To register, visit www.weekendseries.comor call toll free (888) 203-6222.

Courtesy of American Bass Anglers/David Hagood.


Posted By The Bass Hog

Chris Lane


Feb 28, 2012


As he stepped off the 2012 Bassmaster Classic stage on Sunday, Bobby Lane bellowed his brother’s name. Bobby had just been knocked out of contention. He knew Chris still had a good chance.

More than good. Chris Lane of Guntersville, Ala., won the Bassmaster Classic Sunday by more than 3 pounds, fending off hard-charging Greg Vinson. Lane’s victory was his second Bassmaster tournament title of 2012. Each came with a qualification for the 2013 Classic.

Lane brought 51 pounds, 6 ounces to the scales over three days to claim the 2012 crown of professional bass fishing and the $500,000 first-place prize. It was his first Classic win.

Vinson, of Wetumpka, Ala., had a 47-15 total. Finishing third was first-day leader Keith Poche of Pike Road, Ala., with 45-15. Fourth was 2008 Classic champ Alton Jones of Woodway, Texas, whose tournament total was 45-14. Ott DeFoe of Knoxville, Tenn., shot from 15th to finish fifth with 44-14.

Lane started strong and stayed strong in the Red River competition that pitted 49 of the world’s best anglers against each other. Lane was sixth after the first day — tied at 16-4 with brother Bobby — then moved up into the lead after the second day with a 1-pound lead over Vinson, who continued to chase Lane into the final round.

Lane said he was exhausted as he waited in the wings for his turn at the scales on the Classic stage at the CenturyLink Center in Bossier City.

“I’m ready to weigh these fish right now to see if I’ve won my first Bassmaster Classic,” Lane said. “I put everything on the line today. I felt I fished flawlessly today. I left everything I had to give on the water.”

Lane’s catch Sunday was 15 pounds, 14 ounces, which came from two areas of Red River backwaters. He picked his first stop as the Sullivan’s area in Pool 4. Without much to show for the decision, Lane was on the verge of leaving to see if his second stop upriver in Pool 5 might hold better bass, but his instincts told him to stick around a few more minutes. It paid off with what proved to be a 6-10, his biggest of the day. By the time he left Pool 4, he had most of his day’s weight.

“I’ll never again second-guess a decision I make when fishing,” he said. “I listened to what my instincts told me to do, and it was right.”

He named two lures for helping him to victory. One was a Luck “E” Strike G4, a tube with a surprise inside. It has a new inner laminate of a contrasting chartreuse color (which Lane helped design) and the tube’s tentacles flash alternating colors on the fall. His other go-to lure was a Gambler Ugly Otter, a three-paddle soft plastic. He flipped the tube in shallow, stained water; he worked the Otter slowly in clearer water.

Vinson, an Elite pro who celebrated the birth of his first child just weeks ago, said he had the numbers of small bass but not the quality he needed out of the one shallow backwater area he stuck to all three days.

Defending champ Kevin VanDam of Kalamazoo, Mich., finished with 40-10 in 11th place, pulling up from 18th place on Saturday.

Courtesy of BASS Communications