Anderson and Mathews best field at Sanford Lake

The third stop the College Bass Tour sponsored by DNR Sports and Kevin VanDam visited Sanford Lake in Midland County. A day that saw teams scrap their game plans in light of the rain, clouds and sun that visited throughout the day, rewarded teams that adjusted to the conditions and mood of the fish. Teams placing in the Top 5 weighed in largemouth but the trophy 5-pound bass known to inhabit the lake remained elusive. More impressive, the Tour grew by 10 teams at today’s tournament as the Tour begins to gain traction among the fishing community in Michigan. The day started off with rain before rotating between clouds and sun for the remainder of the day. The day previous, team practising saw sun and wind.

Brody Anderson and Bill Matthews won the event with a 16.27-pound bag of largemouth.

Despite that Brody fished the lake before, he did not have the opportunity to pre-fish while Bill could only muster 3-hours to get on the lake. In that time, based on what he found he decided that the team would stay shallow for the day and milk run 3 promising areas that he’d found. They were at peace with the fact that while they didn’t pre-fish as many areas as they would have liked, that realized that it might actually help them.

“The more water you have, the more you try to cover and eventually you run around all day,” they said. He also knew that the north end of the lake was full of stumps and water hazards so they committed to the south end.

Before the event started, both realized they hadn’t been fishing to their potential.

“This year, we’ve been overthinking things and today we just went fishing and had fun,” they said. It was a day where we woke up and decided it was going to be a good day. Once we started catching fish, it was game on.”

Committed to fishing the conditions they were faced with, they fished a topwater when cloud cover was present and switched to flipping and skipping a jig once the sun came out.

They started off with a Strike King Sexy Frog but they realized that the largemouth weren’t eating it good. Instead, they fished a Strike King HC KVD Splash popper on a 7-foot medium action rod with 12-pound monofilament slowly and methodically whenever there was cloud cover.

Once the sun came out, they skipped a jig as far back as they could beneath deeper docks as well as flipping weed clumps in 6- to 9-feet of water.

Despite losing a monster bass that would have unravelled the best of teams, they shook it off and refused to let themselves get psyched out. They knew that they were in areas with quality fish, often fishing behind others, but were confident to pick up the bigger fish that other teams left behind.