Steve Bowman, ever the analyst in these bass wars, notes that crunch time in this tournament day has arrived. We've seen about half the field go by in the last few minutes. They don't know what the others in the game have in their livewells, but it's obvious they're all disappointed in their catches. Some have said as much. They're stopping briefly on points and creek mouths, hoping for a good bite in all the obvious places.
We're almost to the point where Kevin VanDam should pay Steve Bowman and me to linger near him. After visiting other anglers the last hour, we stopped in on him again, just in time for him to catch a keeper. His second fish -- which joined the 2 3/4-pounder we saw him catch earlier -- should give him about 4 pounds for two bass. His expression is not so dour as earlier. VanDam was throwing a spinnerbait along a woody point. His bigger fish came on a crankbait he worked over a long, underwater point not far down the lake from here.
Just caught up with the G-Man, Gerald Swindle, whose lone 3 3/4-pound bass puts him in fifth, unofficially. Swindle is bouncing around the lake, looking for keeper No. 2. He cranked a main lake point briefly, then left. "This place is on fire," he said, a bit sarcastically.
Ott DeFoe, the presumed leader so far on Day One of the Toyota Trucks All-Star competition on Lake Shelbyville, just passed us on the way out of Coon Creek, where he put together a formidable limit. We're not sure what his 11 pounds and change came on, but he's been mixing things up with a jig, a topwater, a spinnerbait and a crankbait. All have been targeted at wood.
I've followed Edwin Evers several times in tournaments and am always amazed at how hard he fishes.
Remind me never to doubt the angling acumen of Ott DeFoe.
There are a lot of nervous unknowns surrounding the start of Bassmaster Elite Series Toyota Trucks All-Star Week. For Mike Iaconelli, his thoughts are 832 miles away in Runnemede, N.J., where his beloved wife Becky could give birth to their second child at any hour.
If you haven’t glanced at BASSTrakk recently, you may be surprised to know that Ott DeFoe and Edwin Evers are first and second (very unofficially) in the standings.
Kevin VanDam is the picture of concentration as he cranks a deep point on Lake Shelbyville, hunting for his first keeper.