In a tournament rife with inconsistencies, Luke Palmer has been the picture of consistency - on paper anyway. He weighed 15-11 on Day 1 and 15-11 on Day 2. That's been enough to move him up from 11th to 7th over the first two days at Lake Guntersville.
But Palmer will tell you he's been something less than steady in landing fish he's tried to drag out of the thick mats he's punching.
"I have not executed this week," Palmer said yesterday. "It's sickening. I lost four (Wednesday) that would have helped, and I lost two (Thursday) that would have helped."
However, Palmer recognizes that's part of it when you're fishing the thick stuff. He's been catching a few each day on topwater, mostly early, with a War Eagle Buzz Toad and a "plopper-style bait." Then he's punching the grass.
"Big rod, 80-pound braid, hit 'em as hard as I can and hope I get the right five to come out," said Palmer, who added that he's got three flipping rods on the deck - one with a 3/4-ounce weight and two with a 1 1/2-ounce weight.
Palmer had four keepers at 10 o'clock, which has kept him in the top 10 on BASSTrakk.