2013 Elite Series West Point Lake Battle West Point Lake - LaGrange, GA, May 2 - 5, 2013

2013 West Point Lake Battle Live Blog

Hollywood chase scene

11:56 am EDT, May 5, 2013

 

Every day is different when you follow anglers in an Elite Series tournament. Some days you sit for hours watching a guy fish the same small area. But following Tommy Biffle today is a bit like filming a Hollywood chase scene.

 

Biffle fishes in a spot for 15 minutes then blasts off to another spot a short distance away — to be followed by us and his three-boat fan flotilla, all running at high speed in each other's wake — where Tommy fishes for another 15 minutes before jetting off to another spot. We've been with him for four hours and he hasn't caught a fish in that time.

 

But he's sticking to his guns, still throwing spinnerbaits. Though we did see, or hear, him mix in a buzzbait at one point. 

Cherry's big one, and his game plan now

11:54 am EDT, May 5, 2013

After further review, Hank Cherry's big fish is probably somewhere between 6 and 7 pounds, rather than 7 or 8. But it's still a game-changer in this tournament, where a 2-pounder has been a solid keeper and a 6-pounder has taken big bass honors each day.

 

He's got one other keeper, under 2 pounds. As Cherry told us earlier, "If I get three bites, they've got to beat me." That's "they" as in the other 11 anglers on Day Four.

 

It was shortly after that when Cherry observed, "That would be something, if I finally catch a good one and can't catch a limit."

 

That's what he's doing now, hopscotching back down the lake, hitting docks and points, mostly with a jerkbait, trying to finish his limit.

 

"I've got four hours," Cherry said at 11 o'clock. "I just need a bite an hour."

 

He also needs some wind to make that jerkbait effective, and he's got none.

 

Overstreet and I certainly aren't complaining about a beautiful sunny day on a beautiful lake. It's the first time anybody has seen the sun since the tournament started on Thursday. And it beats the heck out of that wet-dog of a day we experienced yesterday.

 

Everything is blue and green - blue sky, green trees and water reflecting both.

Ponds looking for kicker fish

11:51 am EDT, May 5, 2013

Things have slowed down for Pete. However, he has his limit and throwing a topwater trying for a kicker fish.

One away from a limit

11:31 am EDT, May 5, 2013

Greg Vinson has his fourth fish.

A fishing dog

11:03 am EDT, May 5, 2013

Do you think it's accurate to say dogs like to watch fishing? Rudy does. He's the dog in the picture with his owner Sean Higgins who lives in the LaGrange area. Sean is a fan of Tommy Biffle and has been following him today.

 

Sean tells me Rudy, who is 6, loves to go fishing. "When he hears me taking off the boat cover he gets excited. And whenever I catch a fish he comes over and licks it."

More pocket hopping

11:01 am EDT, May 5, 2013

 

Faircloth fishes his way around a pocket alternating among a popper, a sinking worm and a buzzbait. He is fishing mainly the shallow flooded grass, but never overlooks any docks he comes to. He makes a short hop to another pocket and catches his first keeper on a popper.

 

The monkey is finally off his back. There's still plenty of time for him to pull it out.

 

There isn't a cloud in the sky. Faircloth caught a good bag yesterday in cold rainy weather. He might not be happy about the change in the weather.

Ponds throws a topwater popper

10:59 am EDT, May 5, 2013

Pete is now throwing a topwater popper over some grass. He is working it slow leaving in the strike zone for a big bass to inhale.

Cherry gets a cameraman

10:54 am EDT, May 5, 2013

Since he wasn't in the top six, Hank Cherry didn't have a camera operator in his boat this morning. But he does now. Marty Dashiel made the transfer a few minutes ago.

Cherry's big-fish catch may be on video though. A GoPro camera was attached to his windshield at takeoff. Cherry said he was on the bow when he swung the big largemouth into the boat - right in front of the GoPro.

 

Just how big is that bass? While Dashiel was boarding, I asked Cherry exactly how big he thought it was.

 

"I don't really know," he said, then held his index fingers about 12 inches apart. "I've been looking at this all week."

Biffle up a creek

10:49 am EDT, May 5, 2013

We followed Tommy Biffle to an amazing little spot. He's struggling right now, trying to find fish. After having no luck in handful of spots on Brush Creek he has now moved to a hidden little inlet.

 

To get here Tommy led us through a tiny tunnel of trees. One tree limb caught him by surprise, smacked him in the face and broke his sunglasses. But he's fishing again, and asked us to hang back so as not to disturb the fish in this small area. It's 10:15 and with only one fish in the livewell, I'm sure he's feeling some pressure.

Docks or not?

10:40 am EDT, May 5, 2013

Faircloth pitches a sinking worm to a series of three docks. He misses a bass and lands another short one. He still looks calm, but he must be growing concerned by now. If he is, it doesn't show.

 

Faircloth jumps to a nearby bridge and retrieves a crankbait past the pilings. He fishes every piling and then cranks the outboard. He makes the winding run out of Beech Creek to one of the bridges in Yellow Jacket Creek. He cranks the pilings here, too. After a few minutes here, he runs to the back of a pocket in Half Moon.

 

He passes Hank Cherry fishing a dock at the mouth of the pocket. Several spectator boats are around him. We just got word that Cherry has put a 6-pounder in his livewell. If that's true, Cherry has 14 or 15 pounds for three fish. Wow!

 

Cherry leaves and takes his spectators with him.

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