Bobby Lane has 15 pounds in the Livewell. Now he's looking for a big one.
I've got two adult children and don't care to add to the brood at this point in life. That's a good thing, as I'm fairly certain it would be physically impossible after the boat ride on Lake Erie back to Catawba Park just now.
As soon as I can uncurl from the fetal position and quit crying, I'll post some less painful news about a morning observing Aaron Martens.
No, it wasn't windy on Lake Erie today. But the pleasure boats are out in force. If I'd been told to wear a jock strap today, I probably wouldn't be puking right now.
Keith Poche's marshal, Ed Dyer, tells us the angler from Alabama just caught a nice 3 pound 5 ounce smallmouth. That's an upgrade for him.
Bobby Lane's marshal, Brent Ellens, tells us things are slow for the Florida angler. But Lane just culled and gained a few ounces.
We drift a little too close to Mark Davis, close enough for a little idle conversation before we pull away. As we're talking to him, he nails bass number five.
The smallmouth is't huge, but it gets the limit monkey off of Davis' back. Are his bass finally ready to cooperate?
Morizo Shimizu is culling. "He's changing baits for 'Big One,'" said his Marshal, Jeff Amos.
After a long spell without a bite, Davis circles back to where he caught his bass earlier this morning. It takes awhile, but he finally sets the hook into bass number four.
This smallmouth is a high jumper. It clears the water several times before Davis hauls it aboard.
Davis estimates that he has 15 pounds.
This would be a good time for Davis to hang one of the bruisers he lost the first two days.
Mark Davis is patiently drop shotting, but his technique is unlike what I've seen other Elite pros doing. Davis is making long casts as opposed to short pitches and vertical presentations. He is also working the drop-shot rig slowly over the bottom with an extremely high rod tip.
Davis still has only three fish in the box. Klotz says that Davis caught only eight or nine bass yesterday, so he has had to grind them out every day.
However, Davis claims that he has lost one or two giant smallies on each of the first two days. Despite the bad luck, Davis is still the leader. You hear a lot of fish tales from fishermen, but Davis is a straight shooter. If he says he lost some huge bass, you can believe him.
If he can boat a few of those chubs today, he will likely pad his lead.
Even though Davis has some of the top finesse fishermen on the Elite tour on his tail, including wonderboy Aaron Martens, he's my pick to win this event.
You may not know it, but Davis, a longtime Bassmaster veteran and former Classic champion and AOY title winner, has been deadly with spinning tackle since the days when short, pistol-grip baitcasting rods ruled the day.
Back then, spinning rods were called "sissy sticks." Now they're called essential tools.
Davis is as capable with a spinning rod as any Elite Series pro. To back up that statement, Davis just put a 5-pound smallie in the box. That's number three for him.
Davis is fishing again and chatting casually with the photographer in the boat with him. You'd think he was catching crappies for a fish fry.
Derek Remitz's marshal tells us Derek has a limit for about 18 to 19 pounds of quality Lake Erie smallmouth. Nice calm conditions are making drop shotting a pleasure.