Walser Jigs His Way To ABA Victory
Robert Walser jigged his way to victory during the Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Weekend Series, operated by American Bass Anglers, South Carolina Division 9 tournament, held March 9, 2013, on the Santee-Cooper Lakes.
Running out of John C. Land III ramp near Summerton, to fish the 110,600-acre chain of lakes, the Lexington, N.C., angler caught five bass weighing 25.28 pounds for slightly more than a 5-pound average. For the Boater Division victory, Walser took home a check for $1,965.
“I fished a jig around cypress trees on the upper lake all day,” Walser revealed. “I caught one bass on homemade chattering bait, but caught all the others on jigs. I caught nine fish and lost four more. Two of the ones I lost were bigger than anything I weighed. I turned the Hydrowave on and noticed some shad moving around a little more than I had been seeing. I think that had something to do with the good bite I had.”
In second for the boaters, Ronnie L. McCoy of Lamar, S.C., brought in a five-bass tournament limit for 20.83 pounds. He anchored his bag with a 7.73-pounder and pocketed $983.
“We fished above the Interstate 95 bridge all day flipping a Sweet Beaver around cypress trees,” McCoy said. “I broke the hook on one fish and lost two more. Those fish may have made a difference. My smallest weigh fish was only 14 inches long.”
Tim A. Jones of North Augusta, S.C., landed four bass going 20.63 pounds for a 5.16-pound average. He went home with a check for $655, but could have won much more.
“I fished the lower lake,” Jones said. “I caught some bass on a Rat-L-Trap and some on spinnerbaits. I lost a huge fish. It was probably over 10 pounds. I also lost a 5-pounder and a 3-pounder.”
In fourth place for the boaters, Sean Anderson of Leesville, S.C., landed five keepers for 18.99 pounds with an 8-pound kicker. Andy Wicker of Pomaria, S.C., took fifth place with four bass at 18.08 pounds.
Brad Fowler of Pendleton, S.C., followed in sixth place among the boaters with four bass and 16.41 pounds. However, he brought in the tournament lunker, an 8.77-pounder. He collected $360 for sixth place and an extra $185 for the bucketmouth.
“The big fish hit a Wackem Baits Craw,” Fowler advised. “I was flipping it in the grass in the upper lake. The big fish hit in the middle of the day.”
In the Co-Angler Division, Clyde Whiteside of Forrest City, N.C., won with three bass and 8.69 pounds. He earned $983 for the victory.
“We fished in Potato Creek,” Whiteside explained. “I caught my fish on a Texas-rigged trick worm. I lost one that would have helped a little.”
Calvin Sharp of Round O, S.C., landed in second with two bass for 6.66 pounds. He won $491.
“We fished the shallows on the upper lake with a Texas rig,” Sharp said. “I caught one fish at 7 a.m. and the second one at 2 p.m.”
Robert Gambrell of Cleveland, Ga., only found one keeper bass, but his 6.48-pounder took third place. It also earned Gambrell the division big bass award.
“I caught that big fish first thing in the morning,” Gambrell recalled. “It hit a swimming jig at the base of a cypress tree.”
Jon Smoak of Sumter, S.C., placed fourth among the co-anglers with two bass going 6.46 pounds. Vernie Haltiwanger of Lexington, S.C., rounded out the top five co-anglers with two bass and 5.42 pounds.
For more information, call Billy Benedetti, tournament manager, at (256) 230-5632 or ABA at 256-232-0406. On line, see www.americanbassanglers.com.