DeFoe, Evers are in Bassmaster postseason finals

DeFoe, Evers are in Bassmaster postseason finals
DeFoe, Evers are in Bassmaster postseason finals

MONTGOMERY, Ala. — Friday, on the eve of their faceoff Saturday on the Alabama River, Gerald Swindle jested that Ott DeFoe “ought” to go downriver, instead of upriver where DeFoe’s been smashing big bags of bass each day of the Evan Williams Bourbon All-Star Championship.

But DeFoe, the 25-year-old rookie phenom from Knoxville, Tenn., stuck to what brought him here. He worked upriver shallow water near current and deep water to trounce the Warrior, Ala., pro by 6 pounds, 11 ounces, and advance to the last round. Swindle, on a day that seemed to go wrong no matter if he fished up or down the river, managed 5-5 to DeFoe’s 12-0.

DeFoe’s final All-Star opponent will be Edwin Evers of Talala, Okla., who beat Casey Ashley of Donalds, S.C., for the right to fish another day. Ashley had 8-0 to Evers 14-0.

Evers and DeFoe were the last two standing in the July 23-31 Toyota Trucks All-Star Week. It began July 23 on Lake Jordan with 12 anglers. Eight advanced to the Alabama River for three days of match play. The prize is $100,000, winner take all.


“I survived another day, I’m excited to be fishing against such a good angler,” Evers said. “And he’s a really good fisherman, so I’ve got my work cut out for me. It’ll be a shootout.”


Evers is shooting to get the better of DeFoe, but he’s also out for a bit of redemption on the Alabama River. He was second to Kevin VanDam on the river in the 2010 postseason, a finish that cost Evers the 2010 Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year title. VanDam didn’t advance to the river this year, but Evers is just as intent on a win now as ever.


But yesterday, when he brought 9-6 to the scales, he thought his postseason might be over.

“I was disappointed. I didn’t think I’d be standing up here now,” he said on stage Saturday. “This is a nerve-wracking format.”

He turned it around Saturday with 14-0, the heaviest bag of the day. It was anchored by a 3-9, his second keeper of the day.


“It took me a little while to catch one, but then I caught them pretty quickly,” he said. “That big one clued me into what was going to happen the rest of the day.”

DeFoe, who won the 2011 Bassmaster Elite Series Rookie of the Year honors as well as a postseason berth in his first Elite season, is looking for his first Elite-level win. He checked in a few minutes early Saturday, a fish-care strategy that paid off.

He had most of his fish by 11 a.m. His first stop was a return to his hottest spot, an area 8 to 10 feet deep near current that produced his three largest bass of Friday. The spot was still sweet Saturday, yielding four spotted bass.


“Today when I went there, there wasn’t any current, so I used a soft jerkbait. They bit really good again,” he said.

His largest, a 4-4, was a largemouth from a different area. But it wasn’t one of the big ones he could see Friday but couldn’t coax into biting.

“Maybe I’ll get them Sunday,” he said.

On Sunday, one Bassmaster fan virtually paired with the champ will win, too. Through an online sweepstakes, 12 fans were hooked in name only to the 12 pros who started out in Toyota Trucks All-Star Week on Lake Jordan.

As the pros were eliminated, so were their fan pairings. The fan whose All-Star pro is the champ will win a Triton 18XS bass boat with a Mercury 150 OptiMax engine. All 12 finalists will win a tackle pack of Berkley and Havoc products.

The two fans that remain standing are Cynthia Bryan of Farmerville, La., and Sean Graves of Spofford, N.H., paired respectively with DeFoe and Evers.

Toyota Trucks All-Star Week will wrap up Sunday under the Union Station Train Shed in downtown Montgomery. The College Classic weigh-in between Auburn and Alabama begins the fishing action at 4:15 p.m. CT. Then the Bassmaster Legends will take the stage at 4:30 p.m. CT.

Hooked Up! begins at 5 p.m. CT and leads into the weigh-in between DeFoe and Evers. All All-Star events are free and open to the public.

2011 Bassmaster Elite Series Official Sponsors: Toyota, Bass Pro Shops, Berkley, Evan Williams Bourbon, Humminbird, Mercury, Minn Kota, Skeeter Boats, Triton Boats, Yamaha

2011 Bassmaster Elite Series Supporting Sponsors: Lowrance, Luck “E” Strike, Nitro Boats, Power-Pole, Ramada

About B.A.S.S.

For more than 40 years, B.A.S.S. has served as the authority on bass fishing. The organization advances the sport through advocacy, outreach and an expansive tournament structure while connecting directly with the passionate community of bass anglers through its Bassmaster media vehicles.

The Bassmaster brand and its multimedia platforms are guided by a mission to serve all fishing fans. Through its industry-leading publications — Bassmaster Magazine and B.A.S.S. Times — comprehensive website Bassmaster.com, ESPN2 and Outdoor Channel television programming, Bassmaster provides rich, leading-edge content true to the lifestyle.

The Bassmaster Tournament Trail includes the Bassmaster Elite Series, Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Open Series, B.A.S.S. Federation Nation events presented by Yamaha and Skeeter Boats and the ultimate celebration of competitive fishing, the Bassmaster Classic.

B.A.S.S. offers an array of services to its more than 500,000 members and remains focused on issues related to conservation and water access. The organization is headquartered in Celebration, Fla.

DAY 2 STANDINGS- EVAN WILLIAMS BOURBON ALL-STAR CHAMPIONSHIP

2011 Evan Williams Bourbon All-Star Championship  7/29-7/31

Alabama River, Montgomery  AL.

(PROFESSIONAL) Standings Day 2

   Angler                Hometown                  No./lbs-oz

Edwin Evers              Talala, OK                  5  14-00

Casey Ashley             Donalds, SC                 5  08-00

Ott DeFoe                Knoxville, TN               5  12-00

Gerald Swindle           Warrior, AL                 5  05-05

Recommended for You

Experts agree record channel cat caught in 1949 was actually a blue catfish. Records

Upon Further Review: 70-Year-Old Catfish Record Voided

G&F Online Staff - May 22, 2019

Experts agree record channel cat caught in 1949 was actually a blue catfish.

If you've been catching catfish with the same method for years, it's time to change it up and learn a new baiting technique. Fishing How-To

Your Guide for the Best Catfish Baits

G&F Staff

If you've been catching catfish with the same method for years, it's time to change it up and...

Memorial Day sale offers 15 percent off everything website-wide. Coolers

Get Ready for Summer with Cordova Coolers

May 23, 2019

Memorial Day sale offers 15 percent off everything website-wide.

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

MLF BPT angler and former Classic champ Casey Ashley has been with Costa del Mar sunglasses his whole career. At ICAST 2019, he shows OSG writer Lynn Burkhead some new products and talks how to pick the right lens color for the water.

13 Fishing Inception SZ

13 Fishing Inception SZ

Florida angling pro Jessie Mizell knows that the saltwater found in Sunshine State coastal fisheries can wreak havoc on even the best fishing gear. But with 13 Fishing's new feature laden Inception SZ saltwater baitcasting reel, tackling inshore and light tackle saltwater game fish just got a whole lot easier!

Mustad

Mustad's Saltwater Jig Lineup

Russ Whisler shows OSG's Lynn Burkhead the innovative features and great color schemes in Mustad's voluminous lineup of saltwater jigs introduced at ICAST 2019.

See more Popular Videos

Trending Stories

While catfish are still catfish, the difference between day and night tactics and strategies can be profound, even when fishing the same lake or river. Catfish

How to Catch Catfish Day and Night

Terry Madewell - April 04, 2018

While catfish are still catfish, the difference between day and night tactics and strategies...

Fishing for nighttime crappie gets you out of the summer heat and puts more fish in the cooler.

By Other Freshwater

6 Tips for Nighttime Crappie

Keith Sutton - June 19, 2017

Fishing for nighttime crappie gets you out of the summer heat and puts more fish in the...

Who needs live bait when the big 'gills are so eager to strike these lures? Other Freshwater

5 Great Lures For Bluegills

Stephen D. Carpenteri - March 10, 2011

Who needs live bait when the big 'gills are so eager to strike these lures?

See More Stories

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Temporary Price Reduction

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.