Pittsburgh, Pa.—Pennsylvania angler Darin Doll retained his lead today in the BASS Federation Nation Mid-Atlantic Divisional without any embarrassing moments this time.
Yesterday, the 37-year-old electrician from York, Pa., caught a limit of five smallmouth to move into the lead but had to be towed in when he ran out of gas. Loaded with plenty of fuel today, Doll made his 54-mile run up to the Youghiogheny River and back with gas to spare and brought in another limit to finish with a two-day total of 15 pounds, 2 ounces.
"The only thing I did differently today was that I kept moving," Doll said. "I had to run and gun a lot because the fish weren't stacked up any place. The aggressive fish were sparse so I would have to move 50 to 100 yards in between bites." The tournament leader estimated he fished about eight spots today.
Starting in the second flight prevented Doll from making it through a lock on time, so it took him an extra 45 minutes to reach his area. The York County Bass Club member still caught seven keepers and got help once again from cloudy weather. "It really brought on the topwater bite," he said, "and that's what I wanted it to do."
BASS Federation Nations from six states are battling for the top prize of the tournament, a $32,000 Triton Boats TR-186/Mercury 150 h.p. outboard rig. Virginia still leads with an accumulative weight of 81-15, while host state Pennsylvania is runner-up with 69-12.
The Mid-Atlantic anglers also have a chance to advance to the BASS Federation Nation Championship. The top finisher in each state earns a berth to this international championship for amateur bass anglers
Anglers from the 12-man Pennsylvania squad have to beat tournament leader Doll to qualify for the championship. Leading the other states are Tim Stump (Delaware), Daniel Rodriguez (Maryland), Eric Woodward (New Jersey), Jeff Freeman (Virginia) and David McKinney (West Virginia).
Winners in the individual and team competitions will be determined tomorrow when the final weigh-in for the Mid-Atlantic Divisional begins at 3 p.m. EST at South Side Riverfront Park.