Brett Preuett and Jackson Blackett of the University of Louisiana at Monroe brought in the Nitro Bass Pro Big Bag of 10-15 to lead Day 1 of the 2014 Carhartt College Central B.A.S.S. Regional on the Ouachita River.
Recent rains have led to high water levels on the Ouachita River, which plagued most of the non-local anglers on Day 1. Even many of the local anglers have never fished the river when it’s this high and they had trouble relocating fish in their normal stomping grounds.
With the water roughly 10 feet above normal pool, the main river dumps muddy cold water into many of the back waters that are normally clear and warm this time of year. This stunts the progress of the spawn and thus throws a big kink in almost everyone’s game plan.
The team that managed the high-water hurdle the best was that of Preuett and Blackett.
“It could have been a little better,” said Preuett. “We lost two good ones today.”
Although those two good ones cost ULM a little cushion, they still have a 3-ounce lead on the second place team of Evan Smith and Aaron Sarna of Arkansas Tech University who brought in 10-12 on Day 1.
Boat pressure was another ailment that most anglers complained of on Day 1. With the majority of the river and its backwaters unfishable due to high water, anglers found lots of company when they found fish. The boat pressure forecast looks even more grim for Day 2.
“There’s a local tournament with 60 boats in it tomorrow that will hurt us some,” said Preuette. “There are only so many places where you can catch fish with the water like this so I’m sure some of those guys will be in there. We should still be able to go behind people and catch some fish though because we’re doing something a little different.”
The team of Matthew Loetscher and Caleb Boudreaux of Louisiana Tech University are ULM’s next nearest competitor after Arkansas Tech. Trent Newman and Jacob Sepeda are tied with LTU for that 3rd position after Day 1 with 9-2.
The team of Clayton Godfrey and Garret Lindsey and Stephen F Austin State University brought in the Day 1 Carhartt Big Bass weighing 5- 1.
The top 13 will move on from the Central Regional to the Carhartt College Series National Championship which will be held later this summer. The brothers Dylan and Devin Duncan of Northeastern State University sit on the bubble right now with 6-9.
Day 2 launch will commence at Forsythe Landing at 6:30 AM. The final day weigh-in will be held tomorrow on the campus of the University of La Monroe starting at 3:15 PM.