Lowen found the largemouth

While Bill Lowen didn't make today's Top 10 final, his tournament bears recounting if for nothing else than the way largemouth bass came into play for him on Lake Lanier's noted spotted bass fishery. Entering the today, Lowen still holds the lead for big bass of the tournament, by a wide margin, thanks to his 6-pound, 14-ounce largemouth caught on Day 1.

That fish and that day, when he weighed all largemouth bass caught from areas where he'd hooked spotted bass in practice, provided the first surprising clue that largemouth bass would be a factor for him. However, Lowen's five bass limit was all spotted bass on Day 2, when his 11-10 bag followed Day 1's 15-15 dropped him from 12th to 31st in the standings.

"Every day has been different," Lowen said Saturday. "That's just the way this lake is. You've got to change. I'd been catching them cranking a little flat-sided balsa bait on channel swings in about four feet of water.

"I'd been looking at these laydowns thinking the largemouth have got to show up on them. (Saturday) I tied on a big spinnerbait, and the first laydown I came to I slow-rolled it down just out of sight and one of my better largemouth ate it. I kept that spinnerbait in my hand as I went down through there and caught 20 or 25. It was one of the best spinnerbait bites I've been on in a long time."

Lowen weighed-in four largemouth bass and one spot totaling 14-8 on Day 3 and finished in 23rd place.