High Water Moves Fish Shallow for Bassmaster Elite Series Anglers at Sooner Run Presented by Longhorn

The Pros Said It

 "It's really going to be a much different tournament this year than last year because of the high water level, and water color is really going to play havoc on anyone planning to structure fish. The fish just aren't out there deep, and I'm fishing much more shallow right now. Last year I was pretty zeroed in on one depth and style, but this year is different. I think there's going to be a couple of good bags caught, but I'm not sure if it will be consistent for one person every day. The bass are in different depths and you have to cover all facets and possibilities of where they may be." - Mike McClelland, 39, Bella Vista, Ark., 4-time Bassmaster Classic qualifier and winner of the 2006 Bassmaster Elite Series Sooner Run on Grand Lake.

 "I'm catching a lot of fish, but not many big bass. The lake is high and it came down about 3 feet just before practice started, so it has started to level off now. I think the lake is off just a little bit because the water dirtied up quite a bit and slowed that deep bite down quite a bit. The fishing has been steady the last couple days, and the water is starting to clear, so I think you'll see some good sacks weighed in." - Terry Butcher, 35, Talala, Okla., one-time BASS winner, 96th in the Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year standings.

"Last year I had a horrible tournament and was all prepared to fish outside the way it was won in 2006, but now it's way over pool and muddy water. I've changed up my game plan and started fishing shallow again. It's tough finding areas where you can get more than one or two bites. The fish are scattered and I haven't found an area with a whole school of them yet. I'm fishing a lot of areas and will hopefully come across some decent-sized bass. I'm fishing the way I like to fish, and now it's just a matter of getting the bites and getting them in the boat." Jared Lintner, 33, Arroyo Grande, Calif., one-time Bassmaster Classic qualifier, ranked third in the Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year standings.

 The Strategy

McClelland: The Arkansan is targeting structure, and using the same pattern that propelled him to win the 2006 Bassmaster Elite Series event on Grand Lake. But, he notes that the stained water color is making it more difficult to locate the bass. He plans to fish shallow and deep, covering a lot of water and using a variety of lures including Carolina rigs, crankbaits, spinnerbaits and Texas-rigged worms. McClelland estimates it will take 60 pounds to win the tournament.Butcher: He is fishing shallow and deep-water locations and using a variety of patterns and lures. For the shallow-water bite he is mainly flipping and for the deep-water bite he prefers crankbaits and soft plastics. He estimates close to 70 pounds will win the tournament.

Lintner: His primary patterns will be flipping and pitching in shallow water around bushes and covering as much water as possible. He also has fished outside points, humps and deeper rock piles to locate the deep-water bite. If he places his bait in the right areas, he is confident he'll come across a big bass.

 Location and Field

 Sooner Run presented by Longhorn — Bassmaster Elite Series

 

Grand Lake

 

Grove, Okla.

 

June 21-24

 

 

Field

 

108 pros, 108 co-anglers

 

Cut to top 50 after Day 2

 

Cut to top 12 pro anglers after Day 3

 

 

Launch

 

North Beach Development

 

61201 East 270 Rd.

 

Grove, OK

 

5:50 a.m. ET

 

 

Weigh-in

 

North Beach Development

 

61201 East 270 Rd.

 

Grove, OK

 

3 p.m. ET

 

 

Background

 

Previous BASS events

 

2006 ESPN Outdoors Bassmaster Series

 

2006 ESPN Outdoors Bassmaster Series

 

2006 Bassmaster Elite Series

 

2006, ESPN Outdoors Bassmaster Series

 

2006, ESPN Outdoors Bassmaster Series

 

2006, ESPN Outdoors Bassmaster Series

 

2006, ESPN Outdoors Bassmaster Series

 

2005, ESPN Outdoors Bassmaster Series

 

2005, ESPN Outdoors Bassmaster Series

 

1995, Bassmaster Invitational

 

1992, Bassmaster Invitational

 

1991, Bassmaster Invitational

 

1980, Bassmaster Invitational

 

 

Previous winners on lake

 

13-11, Alan Kelly, 2006

 

17-13, John Wynn, 2006

 

79-7, Mike McClelland, 2006

 

13-11, Chuck Lawless, 2006

 

12-1, Leroy Rease, 2006

 

24-4, John Shore, 2006

 

15-10, Robbie Dodson, 2006

 

13-8, Steve Dowty, 2005

 

13-5, Luis Nolda, 2005

 

52-6, Tommy Martin, 1995

 

43-15, Jim Morton, 1992

 

49-1, Ron Shuffield, 1992

 

26-3, Ken Cook, 1980

 

 

Heaviest winning weight

 

79-7, Mike McClelland, 2006

 

 

Lowest winning weight

 

12-1, Leroy Rease, 2006

 

 

Weather

 

Temperature

 

93 degrees

 

 

Lake level

 

746.42 ft. above mean sea level

 

 

Bassmaster Elite Series Schedule

 

The Western Run

 

#1 March 8-11 Battle on the Border - Lake Amistad, Del Rio, Texas

 

#2 March 22-25 Duel in the Delta - California Delta, Stockton, Calif.

 

#3 March 29 — April 1 Golden State Shootout — Clear Lake, Lakeport, Calif.

 

The Southern Swing

 

#4 April 19-22 Pride of Georgia — Clarks Hill Lake, Evans, Ga.

 

#5 April 26-29 Southern Challenge — Lake Guntersville, Guntersville, Ala.

 

#6 June 7-10 Blue Ridge Brawl — Smith Mountain Lake, Moneta, Va.

 

The Turn

 

#7 June 21-24 Sooner Run - Grand Lake, Grove, Okla.

 

The Northern Run

 

#8 July 12-15 Champion's Choice - Lake Champlain, Plattsburgh, N.Y.

 

#9 July 19-22 Empire Chase — Lake Erie/Niagara River, Buffalo, N.Y.

 

The Final Charge

 

#10 Aug. 9-12 Capitol Clash - Potomac River, Charles County, Md.

 

#11 Sept. 13-16 Sunshine Showdown — Lake Tohopekaliga, Kissimmee, Fla.

 

Local sponsors: Local sponsors include Grand Lake Association.

 

 

Bassmaster Elite Series sponsors: Sponsors of the Bassmaster Elite Series include Toyota Tundra, Purolator, Triton Boats, Mercury Marine, Berkley, Advance Auto Parts, Lowrance Electronics, MotorGuide and Costa Del Mar.

 

 

For more information, contact BASS Communications at (407) 566-2208 or visit www.bassmaster.com. Visit www.espnmediazone.com for ESPN's latest releases, schedules and other news, plus photos, video and audio clips and more.

 

 

BASS is the worldwide authority on bass fishing, sanctioning more than 20,000 events through the BASS Federation Nation annually. Guided by its mission to serve all fishing fans, BASS sets the standard for credibility, professionalism, sportsmanship and conservation, as it has for nearly 40 years.

 


 

BASS stages bass fishing tournaments for every skill level and culminates with the Bassmaster Classic. Through its clubs, youth programs, aquatic resource advocacy, magazine publishing and multimedia platforms, BASS offers the industry's widest array of services and support to its nearly 530,000 members. The organization is headquartered in Celebration, Fla.

 


 

Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year standings

 


 

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Place Name St Pts

 

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1 Skeet Reese Calif. 1573

 

2 Kevin VanDam Mich. 1460

 

3 Jared Lintner Calif. 1441

 

4 Fred Roumbanis Calif. 1361

 

5 Ishama Monroe Calif. 1350

 

6 Jeff Kriet Okla. 1338

 

7 Terry Scroggins Fla. 1327

 

8 Derek Remitz Texas 1292

 

8 Casey Ashley S.C. 1292

 

10 Steve Kennedy Ala. 1271

 

11 Aaron Martens Ala. 1268

 

12 Dean Rojas Texas 1244

 

13 John Crews Va. 1237

 

14 Stephen Browning Ark. 1236

 

15 Gerald Swindle Ala. 1226

 

15 Kelly Jordon Texas 1226

 

17 Chris Lane Fla. 1220

 

18 Bryan Hudgins Fla. 1217

 

19 John Murray Ariz. 1215

 

20 Gary Klein Texas 1204

 

21 Mark Tyler Okla. 1183

 

22 Scott Rook Ark. 1182

 

23 Kevin Wirth Ky. 1175

 

24 Peter Thliveros Fla. 1166

 

25 Jeff Reynolds Okla. 1162

 

25 Mark Menendez Ky. 1162

 

27 Jason Quinn S.C. 1161

 

27 Timmy Horton Ala. 1161

 

29 Mike McClelland Ark. 1160

 

30 Michael Iaconelli N.J. 1157

 

31 Tommy Biffle Okla. 1155

 

32 Cliff Pace Miss. 1150

 

33 Takahiro Omori Texas 1149

 

34 Todd Faircloth Texas 1136

 

35 Morizo Shimizu Calif. 1121

 

36 Greg Hackney La. 1114

 

37 Ray Sedgwick S.C. 1109

 

38 Alton Jones Texas 1108

 

39 Edwin Evers Okla. 1104

 

40 Paul Elias Miss. 1100

 

41 Pete Ponds Miss. 1098

 

42 Randy Howell Ala. 1097

 

43 Brent Chapman Kan. 1096

 

44 Boyd Duckett Ala. 1084

 

45 Dave Wolak N.C. 1083

 

46 Brian Snowden Mo. 1075

 

47 Kevin Short Ark. 1066

 

48 Mark Tucker Mo. 1048

 

49 Shaw Grigsby, Jr Fla. 1046

 

50 Davy Hite S.C. 1038

 

51 Matthew Sphar N.Y. 1036

 

52 Denny Brauer Mo. 1034

 

53 Russ Lane Ala. 1029

 

54 Mike Wurm Ark. 1025

 

55 Scott Campbell Mo. 1022

 

56 Jimmy Mize Ark. 1016

 

57 Jason Williamson S.C. 997

 

58 Ken Brodeur Conn. 991

 

59 Rick Morris Va. 980

 

60 Yusuke Miyazaki Texas 979

 

61 Ken Cook Okla. 969

 

62 Lee Bailey Ala. 966

 

63 Rick Clunn Mo. 959

 

64 James Niggemeyer Texas 952

 

65 Kotaro Kiriyama Ala. 943

 

66 Greg Gutierrez Calif. 942

 

67 Ben Matsubu Texas 933

 

68 Matt Reed Texas 924

 

69 Kurt Dove Va. 917

 

70 Zell Rowland Texas 915

 

71 Britt Myers S.C. 914

 

72 James Charlesworth Fla. 912

 

73 Bernie Schultz Fla. 904

 

74 Marty Robinson S.C. 901

 

75 Bill Lowen Ohio 888

 

76 Jeff Connella La. 887

 

77 Marty Stone N.C. 885

 

78 Bradley Hallman Okla. 879

 

78 Bill Smith Ky. 879

 

80 Jami Fralick S.D. 877

 

81 Kenyon Hill Okla. 872

 

82 Jim Murray Ga. 870

 

83 James Kennedy La. 852

 

84 Kevin Langill N.C. 848

 

84 Jeremy Starks W.Va. 848

 

86 Grant Goldbeck Md. 843

 

87 Paul Hirosky Pa. 831

 

88 Charlie Hartley Ohio 828

 

89 Mark Rogers Fla. 821

 

90 Guy Eaker N.C. 815

 

91 Matt Amedeo Ohio 807

 

92 Preston Clark Fla. 801

 

93 Glenn Delong Ohio 767

 

94 Keith Phillips Ala. 734

 

95 Steve Daniel Fla. 732

 

96 Terry Butcher Okla. 715

 

97 Eric Nethery Ga. 709

 

98 Doc Merkin Ill. 706

 

99 Jimmy Mason Ala. 678

 

100 Darrin Schwenkbeck Md. 677

 

101 Jon Bondy Canada 672

 

102 Charlie Youngers Fla. 667

 

103 Bradley Stringer Texas 664

 

104 Dave Smith Okla. 660

 

105 Rick Ash Pa. 642

 

106 Byron Velvick Texas 564

 

107 Frank Scalish Ohio 560

 

108 Elton Luce Jr Texas 426