Nation: Trim extends lead at Mississippi River

With a two-day total of 46 pounds, Nick Trim holds the Day 2 lead at the Mercury B.A.S.S. Nation Qualifier at Mississippi River presented by Lowrance.

LA CROSSE, Wis. — Nick Trim would’ve preferred a different start, but after outlasting early frustrations, the boater from Galesville, Wis., maintained his lead in the Mercury B.A.S.S. Nation Qualifier at the Mississippi River presented by Lowrance with a two-day total of 46 pounds.

Trim took the Day 1 lead with a limit of 24-4 — the event’s biggest bag — which gave him a margin of 2-11 over Cade Laufenberg. Adding a second-round bag that went 21-12, Trim widened the gap between him and Laufenberg to 4-1.

“Honestly, today didn’t unfold the way I had planned it at all,” Trim said. “I went right to my juice in Pool 7, I saw them on my LiveScope, and I couldn’t catch them.

“I finally caught two 2 1/4-pounders and a 3 3/4 by like 9:30. I was pretty spun out by then.”

Realizing he had to get the train back on track, Trim ran to a spot he had been saving for Day 3, but another competitor had found it. Fortunately, the other angler welcomed him to share the area.

“I had a 4-pounder I knew was there and I caught her,” Trim said. “That got me up to 15 pounds and settled me down.”

Trim’s next stop would yield a 4- and a 5-pounder. He ended the day after one more spot produced a 4.

Trim said he used the same two-bait combo that delivered Wednesday’s weight. He’s holding those cards low for now, but he’s basically dragging two different looks for fish he’s spotting on his electronics.

“The fish were in a really weird mood today; it took 15 to 30 minutes to catch each one,” Trim said. “My 5-pounder took me about 45 mins.”

Trim said he’ll return to Pool 7 on Championship Friday and employ the same game plan. While he knows he’s burned through a lot of weight already, Trim believes he can find what he needs.

“I don’t know that I have enough ‘saved,’ but I’m around enough of them,” he said. “Basically, I’ve picked off everything I found in practice, but there are enough fish in my area that I should be able to find more.

“I’m not saying I’m going to catch 21 pounds, but I figure I need to catch 17 or 18, and I think I can catch enough to close this out.”

Hailing from Onalaska, Wis., Laufenberg is in second place with 41-15.

Nic Rand of Paw Paw, Mich., is in third place with 39-0.

Kent Johnson of McGregor, Iowa, is in the lead for Big Bass honors with his 5-15.

Tanner Morgan of Byron, Ill., added 10-7 to his Day 1 limit of 12-10 and held the nonboater division lead with 23-1.     

Derek Ehrhardt of Garnavillo, Iowa, holds the Big Bass lead among nonboaters with a 5-13.

In the third qualifying event in the new B.A.S.S. Nation format, the Top 20 anglers will qualify for the 2024 Mercury B.A.S.S. Nation Championship presented by Lowrance, scheduled for Grand Lake O’ the Cherokees in Grove, Okla., Nov. 6-8.

Friday’s takeoff is scheduled for 5:30 a.m. CT at Copeland Park. The weigh-in will be held at the park at 2 p.m.

Explore La Crosse is hosting this week’s event.