MANNING, S.C. — Cliff Prince of Palatka, Fla., took advantage of John "David" Strider's slip-up to take the lead after Day 2 of the final 2009 Southern Open on the Santee Cooper Lakes. His 13-pound, 8-ounce stringer gave him a two-day total of 30-05.
"It was really tough, I only caught ten fish today," he said. "I left 'em yesterday, but I beat on 'em pretty good today. Tomorrow looks tough, too."
Prince kept his tactics to himself, saying he'll need all the help he can get with stormy weather slated to move in on Day 3.John "David" Strider slid one spot after a 3-fish 8-pound, 1-ounce stringer gave him a total of 27-12. He blames his light weight on poor execution. Fishing pressure didn't help either, he said.
"My fish have been pressured, there was trolling motors running around like crazy. I missed out on three big ones." he said. "I had just as much activity today as I did yesterday, they weren't quite as aggressive, and I caught them the same way I caught them yesterday. I'll get 'em tomorrow."
Patrick Pierce of Jacksonville, Fla., moved up to third after bringing a 10-03 bag to the scales. Pierce is worried he burned up his best spots after a hard day. Elite Series pro Terry Scroggins of Palatka, Fla., all but secured a berth in the 2010 Bassmaster Classic with a 15-01 that moved him to fourth. His two-day total is 25-09. Rounding out the top five is Elite Series pro Wade Grooms of Bonneau, S.C., whose 11-14 bag brought his total to 24-04.
Pro anglers are competing for a cash prize and two berths (go to the top two in the Southern Open points standings) in the 2010 Bassmaster Classic (Feb. 19-21, Birmingham, Ala., Lay Lake) while the top seven will be invited to the 2010 Bassmaster Elite Series.
On the co-angler side, Fred Hood of Monroe, Ga., shot to the top of the leaderboard with the biggest co-angler stringer yet, 11 pounds, 12 ounces. His total is 21-00. Dwaine Williams of Greenup, Ky., brought 8-07 to the scales for a 19-pound, 3-ounce total. John Wilson of Summerton, S.C., managed 7-12, good enough for a 16-04 two-day total and third place. George Beville of Apex, N.C., sits in fourth with a two day total of 14-11. In fifth is Michael Bass with 14-10.
After tomorrow's weigh-in, two contenders will be awarded Classic berths and Elite Series invites will be extended to the top seven pros.
Launch and weigh-ins will be at John C. Land III Boating and Sportfishing Facility, Greenall Road, Summerton, S.C. Takeoff will be at 7:15 a.m. ET; weigh-ins are set to begin at 3:20 p.m. ET.