2009 Elite Series - Diamond Drive Lake Dardanelle - Russelville, AR, Mar 26 - 29, 2009

Day One leader Chapman feels the pain of Day Two

RUSSELLVILLE, Ark. — They can't say they weren't warned.

Brent Chapman, Alton Jones, Todd Faircloth and Kevin Wirth all shared water on Day One and they finished first, third, 19th and 27th, respectively.

The same spot, Piney Bay, on Day Two of the Toyota Trucks Diamond Drive on Lake Dardanelle was not nearly as kind.

"They didn't bite and I was stubborn," said Chapman, who finished Friday with two fish that weighed 5 pounds, 11 ounces. "It's hard to leave a place like that, but that's the way this sport is."

There were two things echoed by the majority of anglers before the start of the tournament: it was going to be crowded and it was going to be hard to find a spot that would hold up multiple days.

The lake is so crowded, Chapman said he felt like he had "a spot to myself" even though he could see four other boats.

"The key area where I caught my fish, they weren't fishing that area," he said. "I caught a 3 1/2 pounder at 11 a.m., so I kept thinking it would get better and it just never did."

Faircloth, who had four fish for 7-3 on Friday, bailed halfway through the morning because he felt the spot was fully milked, but Alton Jones, who had three bass when he left there around 10 a.m., said they can come back as quickly as they leave.

"Nighttime is an interesting thing," said Jones, who finished a limit that weighed 14-14 in a different spot. "Fish like to swim around, and the fish were there in the first place because there's something they like."

Wirth was the only angler that stuck it out in Piney Bay and had anything to show for it. He left the hole with a limit at 2:15 p.m., and actually improved from Day One (12-11) with 14-5.

"I had to really slow down today," Wirth said. "I was fishing different from a lot of guys in that hole, but it definitely was a downgrade from Day One in terms of bites."

Whether their day was good or bad on Friday, all four anglers made the top-50 cut and will have to decide if they're going to give the hole another shot on Saturday. Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice ...

Jones said he doesn't care — he's going to at least give it a look.

"This is the time of year where more fish should be coming, so I'll definitely make a pass in there tomorrow," he said.

Wirth was undecided by the time the weigh-in was over, but described the hole as "dried up." Faircloth said he probably won't be back.

As for Day One leader Chapman, whom the hole had given and taken away the most, he said he'll be back if for no other reason than a lack of options.

"It's really all I've got, so I might go in there and maybe adjust a little bit tomorrow," he said. "Randy Howell caught 17 pounds within that same vicinity today, so they're obviously not all gone."

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