Cherry with 12-15

If you have watched Bassmaster LIVE you probably have seen Hank Cherry catching a lot of fish this morning, but may have noticed he does not have a weight coming through on BASSTrakk. Well now, we have it thanks to Cherry’s judge Jon Morris. According to Morris, Cherry has 12-15 giving him a four-day total of 74-11.

Let’s look at his limit thus far:

5-14

1-15

1-11

1-13

1-10

Cherry’s unofficial limit: 12-15 

Jordan Lee culling

After a lengthy search, Steve Bowman and I found Jordan Lee and
delivered a TV cameraman to his boat. This was necessary because Lee
has rocketed up the leaderboard today, moving from 9th place to 3rd.
You may have seen earlier posts from Craig Lamb and Gettys Brannon
detailing his morning.

Lee has 20-7 today and just landed a bass that should add a few ounces
to that total. When we first caught up with him, Lee told us about the
7 pound 15 ounce bass he caught earlier in the day. "Man it was fun,"
he said, smiling like a big kid.

Winning this tournament is still a log shot for Lee. He's over 10
pounds behind Palaniuk at this point. But after Lee's epic Classic
comeback, we know anything is possible for this young man.

He's moving around a lot now. With two and a half hours of fishing
left Lee doesn't appear willing to coast. He still got the pedal to
the metal.

Palaniuk movin' on up

He thought it was bigger, but he'll take it. Brandon Palaniuk set the hook, let out a shout and landed another upgrade - this one weighing 3-7.

"Can you believe that?" he said. "I thought it was a five-pounder."

The bass did bump him up another pound-plus.

Palaniuk moving on up

He thought it was bigger, but he'll take it. Brandon Palaniuk set the hook, let out a shout and landed another upgrade - this one weighing 3-7.

"Can you believe that?" he said. "I thought it was a five-pounder."

The bass did bump him up another pound-plus.

Vinson going for the gusto


Greg Vinson just came across the board with a 7-1 fish. This puts Vinson's weight at 18-2 and moves him to fourth place, unofficially, with a total of 76-10.

This is Vinson's first Top 12 of the year, his first regular season Top 12 since 2015, where he finished fifth on Lake St. Clair.

This event was do or die for Vinson as he came in with two 100-plus finishes, an 81st, and a 31st in our last event on Ross Barnett.

Vinson is sure to grab some much need AOY points with his finish this week.

His goal for today?

A 12-pounder...

That's what he and his Toyota Bassmaster Texas Fest Judge Capt. Randi Wayland, an 11-year veteran of the format, said before Championship Sunday began.

If you missed Craig Lamb's inspiring story on Capt. Randi Waylon and her dedication to the sport, you can find it here.

Palaniuk culls up

It was only a few ounces, but Brandon Palaniuk just culled up with a 2-5, again on the Texas-rigged 10-inch Zoom Ol' Monster worm.

"That fish needs to eat a two-pound shad and bite again," Palaniuk said as he released the bass.

BASStrakk 11a.m. report

59 fish have reached BASSTrakk this morning. Let's take a look at the numbers at 11 a.m.:

Quality report:

5: 3 to 4-pound

2: 4 to 5-pound

1: 5 to 6-pound

0: 6 to 7-pound

1: 7 to 8-pound

Hourly outlook:

7 o'clock hour — 17 fish were scored, with the largest being Greg Vinson's 4-pound, 3-ounce fish.

8 o'clock hour — 14 fish were scored, with the largest being Alton Jones Jr.'s 5-pound, 8-ounce fish.

9 o'clock hour — 16 fish were scored, with the largest being Jordan Lee's 7-pound, 14-ounce fish.

10 o'clock hour — 12 fish were scored, with the largest being Jason Williamson's 3-pound, 12-ounce fish.

Setting up the afternoon

Brandon Paluniak and Brent Ehrler continued holding down the top places on the scoreboard. Palainiuk continues dominating from his funnel area of shallow spawning areas into deeper water. Ehrler   has a similar area but not as productive. Behind them is Jordan Lee, also keying on postspawn bass headed to deep water.

Yesterday, Greg Vinson described to me that what he is doing is a form of video game fishing. “I’m using the Panoptix feature on my Garmin to find specific fish.” Those are in 18-20 feet of water and he’s using an 11-inch worm, Texas-rigged worm to get the job done.

Also fishing for late cycle postspawners is Gerald Swindle, Jason Williamson and Jacob Wheeler. All those anglers, like the above, are fishing the nearest shallow transition areas to deep water.

That general overview tells us the deeper water patterns are setting up to be productive this afternoon. Rain has disappeared from the immediate forecast, with most of the precipitation forecast for the coastal areas.

Palaniuk pecking away

At 10:15 this morning, when he had five bass weighing 12-11, Brandon Palaniuk noted, "Well, I've got half of what I had on Day 3, and I've still got five hours to go."

Fifteen minutes later, he started working on the second half of the 24-7 he weighed Friday. It began with the 3-pound, 12-ounce bass, his second biggest of day, shown in these photos by Nate Sims.

An hour lull for J. Lee

Jordan Lee has had a bit of a lull the past hour. Lee has not entered a fish on the scorecard since 9:53 a.m. This is the longest Lee has gone without a cull this morning. He started off Championship Sunday with 3-3 just 12 minutes after take-off and had the better part of 10 pounds closing in on the 8 o’clock hour. After boating three more solid fish between 8-9 o’clock, Lee clawed up the leaderboard with a 7-14 at 9:15, the largest fish of the day thus far. After culling up to 20-7 nearing 10 o’clock he has not registered another fish. However, this does not mean he is not catching any keepers, just none that will help.

 

This is how Jordan Lee’s limit shakes out right now:

 

7:12 a.m.: 3-3

8:15 a.m.: 2-14

8:44 a.m.: 3-12

9:15 a.m.: 7-14

9:41 a.m.: 2-12

 

Unofficial limit weight: 20-7 

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