PIERRE, S.D. — Since this event was put on the schedule, there was a lot of mystery surrounding what kind of results to expect from the 2018 Berkley Bassmaster Elite at Lake Oahe presented by Abu Garcia.
Interestingly, West Coast natives and finesse experts dominated the final day of competition. After it was all said and done, second-year pro Mark Daniels Jr. won his first Bassmaster Elite Series trophy with a four-day total of 69 pounds, 9 ounces.
Daniels currently lives in Tuskegee, Ala., but was born and raised in California where his passion for fishing was nurtured. He was a solid selection, and he paid out well for Bassmaster Fantasy Fishing players who added him to their roster.
Arizona’s Clifford Pirch was arguably on the winning school of smallmouth bass but didn’t put the pattern together until after the first day. Regardless of that fact, he still put together an impressive tournament and finished in third place.
With only two regular-season Elite Series events on the schedule before the annual Toyota Bassmaster Angler of the Year Championship, Fantasy players atop the leaderboard are beginning to separate themselves from the pack.
Below are the results from Lake Oahe.
Lake Oahe Fantasy Winner: “Crreed” with 2,086 total points
Rank: No. 22,608
Bucket A: Dean Rojas, 280 points
B: Mark Daniels, 315
C: Edwin Evers, 254
D: Caleb Sumrall, 251
E: Jeff Kriet, 199
Fantasy Points Leader: “Jay3000” with 8,958 total points
Rank: No. 1
Bucket A: Jacob Wheeler, 272 points
B: Seth Feider, 201
C: Keith Combs, 153
D: Matt Lee, 151
E: Jason Williamson, 237
Lake Oahe’s Perfect Team:
Bucket A: Clifford Pirch, 330
B: Mark Daniels, 315
C: Jordan Lee, 257
D: Boyd Duckett, 285
E: David Fritts, 253
BUCKET A: PIRCH
Clifford Pirch was only able to put together 7-10 on Day 1 of the event, but followed that up with 18-4, 19-9 and the heaviest bag of the tournament at 20-11. Pirch earned his 1.9-percent ownership 290 points for finishing in third place, and 40 bonus points for the big bag.
Second-best choice: Casey Ashley finished one spot ahead of Pirch in the standings, but one spot below him in Fantasy Fishing results. Ashley earned his 1.1-percent ownership 295 points for a solid second-place finish.
Worst choice: Surprisingly, Wesley Strader was the lowest scoring angler in Bucket A who earned his 1.1-percent ownership 91 points for a difficult 92nd-place finish.
BUCKET B: DANIELS
Mark Daniels Jr. earned his first championship after two years a pro on the Bassmaster Elite Series. He’s far from a rookie, however. The 36-year-old pro enjoyed a successful career with the FLW before earning a spot with Bassmaster through the Opens series. Daniels earned his 1.3-percent ownership 315 points in total, 300 for the win and 15 bonus points, 5 points per day of derby leadership.
Second-best choice: Brent Ehrler enjoyed a quality showing and earned his 13.7-percent ownership 260 points for a 10th-place finish.
Worst choice: Roy Hawk struggled at Oahe and finished in 93rd place having earned his 1.4-percent ownership only 89 points.
BUCKET C: J. LEE
Jordan Lee, the reigning 2018 Bassmaster Classic champion for the second year in a row, managed a solid finish at Oahe posting 257 points for his bucket-dominating 22.5-percent ownership after finishing in 11th place.
Second-best choice: Edwin Evers produced a good showing and finished in 12th place having earned his faithful 17.6-percent ownership 254 points.
Worst choice: Steve Kennedy endured a tough tournament and was the lowest scoring angler in this bucket. He earned only 71 points for his 3.9-percent ownership after a difficult 102nd place.
BUCKET D: DUCKETT
Boyd Duckett of Guntersville, Ala., made a serious run for the title at this event. He earned his 0.7-percent ownership 285 points after stellar fourth-place finish.
Second-best choice: Barely missing the Top 12 cut, Caleb Sumrall earned his 0.3-percent ownership 251 points for finishing the event in 13th place.
Worst choice: Jonathon VanDam struggled at Oahe and finished in 107th place, which earned his bucket-dominating 40.4-percent ownership only 61 points.
BUCKET E: FRITTS
Legendary angler David Fritts lead after Day 1, and ended up finishing in 14th place, which earned his 0.2-percent ownership 253 points in total
Second-best choice: Jason Williamson fished a productive tournament and earned his 3.9-percent ownership 237 points after a solid 19th-place finish.
Worst choice: Bassmaster rookie Bill Weidler was the lowest scoring angler in Bucket E having earned his 0.2-percent ownership only 66 points after a tough 104th-place finish.