Matt Reed quickly puts No. 3 in the livewell on the very next cast. Photo by Bassmaster Marshal Tim Patterson.
It's Michael Iaconelli with No. 2 — a 2 3/4-pounder. Photo by Bassmaster Marshal Jimmy Rogers.
Matt Reed catches No. 2. — a nice Alabama spotted bass. Photo by Bassmaster Marshal Tim Patterson.
Bill Lowen is fishing so close to the shoreline of this Bouldin Dam Canal, he could reach out and grab the bushes if he wanted. How you doing Bill? "Not good," he said. That's a different story from yesterday when the River Rat had four fish in this same spot by 8 a.m.
Koto Kirayama is in the canal now; and unlike most of the guys we've seen, he's fishing closer to the middle of the channel. No report on how he's doing.
Edwin Evers whacked them yesterday and he has a pair of spectator boats with him today. He's got a jig of some kind tied on and is pitching it to the shoreline. Edwin is typically very quiet when he's on the water, so we'll have to wait to see what he has until a little later.
Pipkens races out of the canal. We think we know where John Murray is. On our way.
Alabama Power notified B.A.S.S. that water flow on the Tallapoosa may be suspended today to locate a drowning victim near Tallassee. We just ran across this search and rescue boat presumably tasked with locating the victim.
There is a glut of anglers fishing within a half mile of the Bouldin Dam — Bill Lowen, Chad Pipkens, Rick Morris, Matt Herren, Edwin Evers and Gary Klein.
We've settled on Klein for a moment. He's fishing closest to the dam maybe 300 yards away. Klein has a spinnerbait that he's throwing toward some flooded bushes. He says he has nothing so far this morning.
Herren is on the opposite side of the canal, about 100 yards from Klein. He says he has two fish, "But it's slower this morning. They'll bite, though."
Pipkens is on the same bank as Herren and said he has three fish, one nice one. "Can you go knock on the dam and ask them to run some more water," he implores. "They bit so fast, and then they were done."
At just past the midway point of the 2013 season, I find myself looking at the two significant races (Toyota Bassmaster Angler of the Year and the battle to earn a berth in the Bassmaster Classic) in terms of points and trophies. The only way to win AOY is to rack up the points. To get to the Classic, you can do it through AOY points or you can win an Elite Series tournament. For some anglers, a bad start to the season means they won’t be able to get there on points. They’ll need a win.
Two anglers in the top 10 after Day 1 on the Alabama River are in the hunt for AOY. Edwin Evers ranks fifth in the tournament and first in AOY thus far. He seems as focused on his goal as I’ve ever seen him. Even on good days he seems mildly perturbed they weren’t better — like a race driver who's hefting a big trophy but still irritated that he didn’t shave another second or two off his pit time.
The other angler doing well here who’s still a factor in the AOY race is Bobby Lane. He’s fourth in the tournament and eighth in AOY. Like Evers, Lane is one of the most consistently solid anglers in the Elites, though unlike Evers he’s yet to really challenge for an AOY title.
One of these days we’re going to have brothers who both win a Classic, and I think it’s going to be Chris and Bobby Lane. Chris already has his trophy. Bobby will have one before it’s over. He’s so good he'll have lots of chances, and one of these days he'll take one down.
More on the guys who need to win to get to the 2014 Classic as soon as I type it up!
Chip Porche with keeper No. 3. One small area has produced three quick keepers for Porche. Photo by Bassmaster Marshal Trait Crist.
Rick Clunn with a small keeper. Photo by Bassmaster Marshal Keith Lott.
It's No. 4 for Brent Chapman with a total estimated at about 15 pounds. Photo by Bassmaster Marshal Karl Jones.