Kelley Jaye is known for fishing a jerkbait. So he's quite familiar with the fact that just about any fish species will hit a jerkbait. When he set the hook Saturday morning, he didn't think it was a bass on the end of his line.
"I thought it was a catfish when I hooked into it," Jaye said. "It pulled so hard and so steady. I lifted my poles up, turned my trolling motor on and I just followed it for 20 or 30 yards until it gave out."
When it gave out, Jaye lifted a 9-pound, 2-ounce largemouth bass into the boat. It was the Big Bass of Day 1 at the AFTCO Bassmaster Elite on the St. Johns River. And it provided a big anchor in his 5-bass limit weighing 21 pounds, 7 ounces. He leads the tournament by 15 ounces over Paul Mueller, who had 20-8. Jaye finished 11th last year on the St. Johns, doing the same thing in the same area.
"They live where I'm at," Jaye said. "It's a grind. I was only getting eight or nine bites a day, but they were good fish. It's pretty much the same thing this year too."