Top lures at Oklahoma’s Eufaula 2023

Late postspawn conditions prevailed at the St. Croix Bassmaster Open at Lake Eufaula. In a tournament where large groups of anglers gathered in several areas, Joey Nania was an exception, choosing instead to separate himself by fishing to his strengths in less-pressured areas and then executing on every bite.
Starting the tournament in 25th place with 14 pounds, 5 ounces, Nania rocketed up the leaderboard with 22-3 on Day 2, then added 16-1 on Championship Saturday for a winning weight of 52-8. Nania also achieved a rarity in the Opens Series, winning his second title in two years. He clinched the opportunity to compete in a second Academy Sports + Outdoors Bassmaster Classic presented by Toyota, this time in March 2024. 
You will see drop shots, shaky heads and Neko rigs throughout this gallery, with exception of the setup used by the winner. A unique twist created by Nania to a textbook finesse rig was a key to his win. See it and the lures used by the top finishers, and gear up for summertime bass fishing. 
Click here to buy these lures at Bass Pro Shops.
Andrew Hargrove (10th; 39-0)
Hargrove relied on a drop shot and shaky head to cover his strike zone. 
He made the drop shot with a 6-inch Roboworm, rigged on a No. 1 drop-shot style hook, with a 3/8-ounce cylinder weight. 
Hargrove also used a 1/4-ounce shaky head jig with a Zoom Trick Worm.
Jason Meninger (9th; 39-6)
Meninger used finesse soft plastics and an old school crankbait. 
For forward-facing sonar bites, he made a Ned rig with a 1/6-ounce Z-Man Power Finesse ShroomZ Weedless Jighead, with a Z-Man TRD.
For dragging on the bottom, he used 1/8- and 1/4-ounce BassTEK jigheads with the Z-Man Bang StickZ. 
The old school crankbait.
Tyler Lubbat (8th; 39-9)
Lubbat relied on a drop shot and shaky head for fishing brushpiles, and a spinnerbait slow rolled through cover for early morning action. 
To prevent hang-ups, he Texas-rigged the drop shot with a 6-inch Roboworm, on a 2/0 Roboworm Rebarb Hook, with 3/8-ounce cylinder weight. 
For a change up, Lubbat used a 1/4-ounce Buckeye Lures Spot Remover Shaky Head, with a BizzBaits Dizzy Diamond.
He also used a 1/2-ounce Angler Assets Spinnerbait with double gold and silver willowleaf blades. Lubbat added a trailer hook and Zoom Swimmin Super Fluke for strike appeal. 
Robert Gee (7th; 45-13)
Gee’s lure lineup included a drop shot, Texas rig and shaky head.
He made the drop shot with a 6-inch Roboworm, rigged on a 2/0 hook, with a 1/4-ounce cylinder weight.
Gee also used a 10-inch ribbontail-style worm, rigged on a 4/0 Ryugi The Standard EWG Offset Worm Hook, with a 3/8-ounce tungsten weight.
He also used a 3/16-ounce shaky head jig with a Zoom Trick Worm.
John Soukup (6th; 46-10)
Soukup used a jerkbait, shaky head and drop shot. 
A top choice was this Megabass Ito Vision 110 Jr. 
He also used this 1/8-ounce Strike King Tour Grade Shakey Head, with a 7-inch Strike King Super Finesse Worm.
Soukup made a drop shot with a Zoom Trick Worm, rigged on a No. 2 Gamakatsu Aaron Martens G-Finesse Drop Shot Hook, with a 1/4-ounce cylinder weight. 
Click here to buy these lures at Bass Pro Shops.
Trevor McKinney (5th; 46-14)
McKinney used a drop-shot rig to keep it simple. 
He made it with a Zoom Trick Worm rigged on a No. 1 VMC NK Finesse Neko Hook, with a 3/16-ounce Jig Shack Tungsten Weight.
Tyler Williams (4th; 47-1)
Williams used a skirted jig and jerkbait to cover his strike zone. 
A top choice was this 3/4-ounce Greenfish Tackle Little Rubber Jig, with a Yamamoto Flappin’ Hog.
To match the shad fry fed on by the bass, he downsized to this Megabass Ito Vision 110 Jr. 
Matt Messer (3rd; 47-2)
Messer, like many of the top finishers, chose a shaky head to catch largemouth from brushpiles and other isolated wood. 
He used a 3/16-ounce Berkley Fusion19 Shakey Head with 6.25-inch Berkley PowerBait Bottom Hopper Worm.
Trey McKinney (2nd; 51-4)
McKinney used a crankbait and a wacky-rigged Neko rig. 
He made the Neko rig with a Strike King Ocho, inserting a weight on one end, with a 2/0 Gamakatsu Aaron Martens G-Finesse Drop Shot Hook.
McKinney also used a Strike King 1.5 Squarebill Crankbait, retrofitted with No. 2 G-Finesse Treble Hooks. 
Joey Nania (1st; 52-8)
Nania used a single rig that he said has accounted for about 75% of his catches this season. He called it a Ned-Miki rig, the Z-Man version of a Damiki rig. Nania came up with the idea and name for the Ned-Miki rig, which is a substitute for the drop-shot rig, designed specifically for targeting individual bass using forward-facing sonar using vertical presentations. It’s also productive for suspended bass when allowing the rig to glide and pendulum while worked back to the boat. 
That rig was this 3/16-ounce Z-Man Finesse EyeZ Jig Head, with a Z-Man StreakZ 3.75. Key to the rig is the buoyancy of ElaZtech that maintains a natural horizontal posture, like a live shad.