See DeFoe, Palaniuk, Lee, and Rojas take on Lake Guntersville on the final day of the 2014 GEICO Bassmaster Classic presented by Diet Mountain Dew and GoPro.
Faircloth is south of South Sauty Creek at the moment and has roughly 25 pounds in the boat. He’s got his Power-Poles down to slow his drift; the wind is blowing from the southwest at the moment, pushing him up the lake. He’s working what I’d guess is a Strike King Red Eye Shad and is keeping a close eye on his electronics, supposedly throwing up to a small submerged island.
Has Randall Tharp made the key adjustment he predicted yesterday he’d need to win? “The water’s warmed up six degrees, they should be biting better than they are,” Tharp told 2010 Classic Runner-up Jeff Kriet in a “Take Out Live” webcast interview, minutes after he came off the water on Day 2. “And they are biting somewhere, I just have to make the right adjustments to win this tournament tomorrow.”
We've found Tharp in a section of the lake where we've seen many other top competitors fishing over the course of the week, although we haven't seen anyone on this precise spot. It's within sight of where Fred Roumbanis caught his monster on Friday so we know there's big-fish potential.
We’ve left Paul Mueller and found Todd Faircloth slinging a giant lipless crankbait. Just as we were pulling up, his rod doubled over and he crouched down and the fight with a 4-plus was on. The fish bit at the end of his cast so a long battle ensued with the fish jumping multiple times. He led the fish around his Skeeter until he was able to get enough momentum to lift it into the boat. He’s culling 3-pounders right now.
As we gorged ourselves last night in a local Mexican restaurant, a woman came over and told Overstreet he looks like "a young Kenny Rogers." After today's healthy dose of sun and extensive boat rides, he looks more like a cross between Kenny Rogers and a California Raisin. We just took a 30-minute ride. Shortly after Tharp caught a fish at his starting spot, he decommitted and pulled the trolling motor for a long ride down the lake.
After making two moves, Evers pulled up on a bank and boated a 4-pounder. That's going to bump him up about two pounds. He landed a 3-zoo under as I was writing that last sentence, so that could bolster his total by another pound. Are we witnessing some fourth-quarter heroics?
DeFoe runs farther out into the middle of the main lake and fishes a ridge. It's been a long dry spell, but within five minutes he catches a bass that weighs more than 7 pounds. He sets the hook and the bass leaps out of the water. We all gasp at the size of the fish. DeFoe does the kabuki dance while fighting the bass from one side of the boat around his outboard motor to the other side before he gets a grip on it. DeFoe is pumped. He holds the bass high for the fans.
Evers just landed another one and promptly tossed it over the other side of the boat. Seconds later, he moved to a spot behind the Goose Creek Marina. Perhaps it's the time of day, warming water temperature, or the chop the wind has put on the water. Whatever the case, the pace of fish catches is picking up for Evers.
There's nothing like a couple of good fish to lift an angler's spirit. Shortly after Evers put his two best fish of the day in his boat, I reported it on the War Room. As I discussed the reversal of fortunes with Tommy Sanders, I mentioned that the dwindling number of spectator boats can affect an angler's mental state. I went on to say that there's nothing like a few good fish to "get the spiders out of a guy's head."