LEESBURG, Fla. — When Bradley Hallman was told he was in ninth place on stage Saturday, he figured he'd definitely be fishing Sunday.
There weren't many anglers left to weigh-in behind him and certainly not four better bags. But when he walked off the stage and looked at the leaderboard, he got a little more nervous.
"I saw that I was tied with Todd [Faircloth] and Mark [Davis]," he said. "That meant one of us was in eighth and one of us was in 11th, and whoever was in 11th wasn't going to make it."
The three started talking amongst themselves and decided that the tiebreaker was heaviest stringer of the tournament. That put Hallman behind both Davis and Faircloth, so he resigned to the fact that he wouldn't be in the final.
"I left the stage and started walking around," he said. "I made my roommate Derek Remitz buy me a chicken sandwich at the expo and we were talking about sleeping in this morning."
Then he heard tournament director Trip Weldon start talking about a tiebreaker and he mentioned number of fish caught. Hallman had caught a limit every day, so he listened closely.
Davis had only caught four on Saturday, which meant he was out and Hallman and Faircloth were in.
"I started walking fast toward the stage, and when I heard them say Oklahoma, I started running," he said. "I got there just in time to stand up there with the top 12."
Faircloth said he wasn't sure if it was number of fish caught or heaviest weight, but he knew he was in either way. His prize: trying to make up a 19-pound deficit in one day.
"This is Florida and anything can happen," he said. "The potential is there but the conditions really aren't that great for catching a 30-pound stringer.
"This is probably the coldest day they've had herein quite some time. It's probably going to be more or less a grind out there."
Hallman agreed. There have been some major moves made all week — Bobby Lane went from 85th to third from Days One to Two, and both Steve Kennedy and Chris Lane made moves from the bottom of the first cut into the top 12. But Sunday's weather coupled with the pressure on the fish doesn't look good for Hallman or Faircloth.
"I don't think I have any chance to win," Hallman said. "I'm just going to try and catch as much weight as I can and move up in the standings."
Visit Bassmaster.com for full coverage of the Elite Series Sunshine Showdown on the Harris Chain of Lakes, from Leesburg, Fla., March 6th–9th, 2008. Daily weigh-ins with live streaming video and real-time leaderboards start at 4 p.m. ET. "Hooked Up" will air Sunday at 10 a.m., noon and 3:30 p.m. ET. And a reminder … Daylight Savings Time starts Sunday, so remember to set your clocks.