The first group of anglers heading to the next round of the Major League Fishing Stage One pro bass fishing tournament is set after their two days of fishing on Lake D’Arbonne.
Mark Daniels, Jr., continued to lead Group A in the $800,000 event with 16 bass weighing 33 pounds, five ounces. He gets a special reward for that performance. He punched his ticket to championship day Thursday at Bussey Brake near Bastrop. The other 19 members of the top twenty today are moving on to the knockout round of the event Wednesday on Caney Lake trying to earn a Bussey berth.
“I could not be happier than to know I’m headed to Bussey Brake and the championship,” Daniels said. He caught his fish on two baits, a suspending jerk bait and a 1/4 ounce silver/blue-back Rat-L-Trap. That’s a bait made right here in Louisiana down in Alexandria by the Bill Lewis lure company. He used the smaller Trap to be able to fish it in grass in one to three feet of water where the fish were coming up chasing bait.
But there lots more action before the finals happen. Another group of 20 will be determined when Group B hits the water again on the ‘Bone Tuesday. It’s going to be a battle. The top finisher gets the same reward as Daniels. Unless something changes, that could be first day Group B leader Jared “the Milk Man” Lintner of Covington, Ga, caught 11 bass weighing 33 pounds, two ounces on Sunday. But he’s got to maintain that lead to get to avoid the knockout round. The top anglers from Group B will also make the cut and head to Caney Wednesday.
It is a lot to keep up with, but it’s nothing like the challenge the anglers face catching bass in these cold water, bluebird day conditions. And while a lot of the anglers – especially the runners and gunners among them – are worried about navigating the tree and stump filled lake, that’s one reason the fishery is so fertile.
You can see the whole top 20 that made the cut in Group A here:
You can watch the whole thing every day during fishing hours here:
The top 40 move on to Caney, then the top ten earn a berth in the finals at Bussey Brake on Thursday with the winner walking away with a $100,000 payday. There’s a total of $800,000 in prize money in this event alone.
Quote of the Day: It doesn’t come from a fisherman. It comes from MLF’s man-on-the-water, announcer Rob Newell. Here’ what he said. “I think Lake D’Arbonne had a little bit of an unfair showing the past several days. A lot of it falls back on the fact that these guys basically got no practice here. One day they did practie it was just nasty. The wind blew 20 and it was an icy, nasty day. If the weather held out and the guys had some more times to practice, that Scoretracker would have been moving a whole lot more.”
Words of the Day:
Grinder: Having to work hard as you can with your teeth gritting like a set of gears rubbing together with no oil. Application: The fishermen had to work as hard as they could from start to finish.
Globbulation: One of anglers hung a good bass and it swam into a brusth top. He managed to pull part of the top, his crankbait and the bass out in one big wad — promptly named a “globbulation”.
Here’s something In think is very important: It’s an honor for MLF to come to this region and hats off to the Monroe/West Monroe Tourist and Visitors Bureau and the State of Louisiana Tourism folks for helping get them to D’Arbonne, Caney and Bussey. There’s an estimated economic impact of more than $2 million by them being here. And more to come as others try their hands fishing and visiting here. Super Thanks to all the local folks in Farmerville, West Monroe, Jackson Parish and Bastrop who are working hard to make things go smoothly for them. Good job. These fishermen are doing what they do for a living. I’m thankful that a vast majority of our local anglers and citizens realize that and give them plenty of room and respect. It’s a public lake, but it sure doesn’t hurt to give up a few minutes of our fun fishing to make them feel welcome and to help promote the economy of this region. I feel bad for those that are stuck on an old stump and can’t see it that way.