RUSSELLVILLE, Ark. — The Arkansas River, like most river systems, will take just as quickly as it gives and a few of the anglers were really feeling it on Friday.
The deepest cut the river delivered on Day Two was to Arkansas' Mike Wurm, who started the day in fifth place but fell to 34th after only weighing in only 2-7.
"I fished the same areas I caught them yesterday, but I just couldn't make them bite," he said. "It's extremely disappointing. I really wanted to make this cut, and after a great day yesterday, it hurts that much more."
Wurm said it started to get urgent for him only an hour in when he said he hadn't had a single bite.
"I thought, 'Man, this might start to be a problem,'" he said. "I was antsy from then on out, trying everything I could, but nothing worked."
The only other angler to fall out of the top 12 was Mark Tucker, who started the day in 10th, but finished in 37th after weighing in a dismal 1-10.
Steve Kennedy was on the receiving end of the river's changing ways, bringing in the biggest bag of the day, 17-13, to add to his 6-1 from Thursday.
"Yesterday, I could only manage two keepers," Kennedy said. "I have eight before noon today."
As for his thoughts on the reversal of fortunes, Wurm was pretty simple.
"That's the river," he said. "It does that."
With only one and a half tournaments left in the Elite Series season, Kenyon Hill decided it was time to have a little fun Friday morning. He rooster tailed as he took off, soaking emcee Keith Alan with a huge wave of water.
But the fight had only begun. Alan hosed down Hill with a Super-Soaker as he came through to weigh-in Friday night, but harshest revenge came with his commentary. Here are a couple of his best — all in good fun of course:
"I didn't see it coming because I was looking for a big name pro behind you."
"I figure I better get you back now because I knew I wouldn't have the chance tomorrow."
Take your move and shove it
Even though he won the Bassmaster Legends in Little Rock last year, Scott Rook's name didn't come up much in the way of predictions for 2007 because the tournament was moved out of his back yard.
"A lot of people counted me out when they heard we weren't going to Little Rock," said Rook, who qualified for Saturday by finishing sixth with 28-3.
Rook obviously one of the anglers who were unhappy to see the tournament move and thought that it was unnecessary, but he likes his position now.
"I was really looking forward to it coming to Little Rock, and I was disappointed to see it come up here," he said. "It really means a lot to be able to make the cut and defend my title."
Watching the bucks run away
Even with $250,000 on the line, Edwin Evers couldn't help but keep his eyes on the woods on Thursday.
"I think I had hunting on my mind," said Evers, who only brought in 5-13 on Day One. "There's a big buck right around the bank where I was fishing and I couldn't stop looking at him."
The fishing gods had pity on Evers Friday, and it showed in his final product.
"I didn't see him today and I did a little better," he said after weighing-in his 12-15 bag.
Big bass watcher
Rick Coker, a homebuilder from Little Rock, won a fully rigged Triton Mercury Lowrance Motorguide package just for watching Tommy Biffle boat a 5-11 bass on Friday.
The paid observer who was riding with the angler that caught the biggest bass of the day on Friday won the boat.
"Biffle was great all day," Coker said. "I just had a great day."