Ortega’s heartbreak

Andy Ortega’s day started much slower than he anticipated, but he was making due and had two fish in the boat. He was fishing a dock and a stretch of back when I arrived to cover him. No takers on the dock, but the stretch of bank shortly after was where heartbreak happened.

From 30 yards away, I heard a massive blowup shallow, then the crack of Ortega’s hookset. The fish jumped and thrashed for a second before it came unbuttoned and splashed back into the water.

Ortega lost what he called a 4 pounder. That was a gamechanger on Logan Martin this week and he knew it. He was visibly frustrated. Gave a jump, dropped his rod and put his hands on his knees. He quickly regained his composure and kept fishing. If nothing else, Ortega can have confidence in the pattern he is fishing, but it’s easy to say that when I wasn’t the one who jumped off a crucial fish. The 19-year old said he had a few deep brushpiles he may lean more heavily on this afternoon if the shallow deal didn’t work out for him.