Webster Cranks Way To Victory On Lake Wylie
Michael E. Webster cranked his way to victory during the Toyota Bassmaster Weekend Series, operated by American Bass Anglers, South Carolina Division 9 tournament, held May 11, 2013, on Lake Wylie.
Running out of Buster Boyd’s Landing in Lake Wylie, S.C. to fish the 13,443-acre lake on the North Carolina-South Carolina border near Charlotte, N.C., the Gastonia, N.C., angler caught five bass weighing 18.65 pounds. For the Boater Division victory, Webster took home a check for $1,859.
“I mostly cranked ledges and creek channels on the lower end of the lake with a DD-22 and other deep-diving crankbaits,” Webster revealed. “The fish were still pretty shallow. I was throwing the crankbait in 13 to 15 feet of water. We focused on a shad spawn over shell beds early and caught a ton of fish. Later, we fished the same areas, but a little deeper.”
In second for the boaters, Randall L. Langston of Bishopville, S.C., landed a five-bass tournament limit going 17.21 pounds. He anchored his bag with a 4.20-pounder to pocket $930.
“We fished the South Carolina side of the lake and I threw either a spinnerbait or a jig all day,” Langston explained. “We caught fish throughout the day. I broke one off that cost me the win.”
Bradford Beavers of Ridgeville, S.C., found five keepers for 16.39 pounds and third place among the boaters. He capped his catch with a 3.52-pounder to win $620.
“All my fish came on spinnerbaits,” Beavers said. “We fished below the bridge. The water was muddy, but I like that. We just found places where the shad were spawning on the riprap. Even late in the day, we were catching fish in a foot of water.”
In fourth place for the boaters, Andy Wicker of Pomaria, S.C., brought in five keepers for 16.07 pounds with a 4.17-pound kicker. Robert Walser of Lexington, N.C., followed in fifth place with five bass and 14.22 pounds. Tracy Watkins of Williamston, S.C., set the tournament big bass standard with a 5.78-pounder.
“I caught the big fish early in the morning on a fluke,” Watkins revealed. “We were fishing near some spawning shad around rocky cover. My partner hooked one and I was about to get the net when I had a good bite. I said he needs to get the net instead.”
In the Co-Angler Division, Jerry Neuner of Rutherfordton, N.C., brought in three keepers for 11.22 pounds. He anchored his bag with a 4.90-pounder that won the division big bass race. For the victory, Jerry Neuner collected $929 with an extra $88 for the lunker.
“We caught fish all day long,” Neuner recalled. “I caught fish on just about anything I threw, including a spinnerbait, buzzbait, chatterbait and worms. We probably caught about 40 fish and didn’t lose any. We fished the shad bite around rocks.”
Taking second for the co-anglers, Robert B. Lytton of Goose Creek, S.C., landed a three-bass division limit for 10.20 pounds including one 4.64-pounder. Fishing with Walser, he netted a second-place check worth $465.
“I caught my fish on spinnerbaits below the bridge,” Lytton said. “We fished around rocks. My boater caught a lot of fish. That’s why I caught a lot of fish. I couldn’t have asked for a better boater.”
Tim A. Moore of Newton, N.C., found a division limit of three keepers. He finished third among the co-anglers with 9.30 pounds including a 3.26-pound kicker.
“I fished on the South Carolina side and caught all my fish on a crankbait,” Moore said. “I couldn’t catch anything on the bank, so I started throwing farther out and saw better results. I culled about five times early in the morning.”
Eddy Morgan of Denver, N.C., placed fourth among the co-anglers with three bass and 9.05 pounds that included a 4.20-pound kicker. William R. O’Dell of Hodges, S.C., rounded out the top five co-anglers with three bass going 8.78 pounds.
For more information on this tournament, call Billy Benedetti, tournament manager, at 256-230-5632 or ABA at 256-232-0406. On line, see www.americanbassanglers.com.