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Zigging When I Should Have Zagged

Posted by stephen on May 17, 2014


(Photo: Seigo Saito)

After having a really good start to a tournament it’s always disappointing to fall off the next day.  Unfortunately, at Lake Dardanelle this week, that’s exactly what happened.  The fact that Dardanelle is a shallow river system definitely got me excited when looking ahead to this tournament.  As a mentioned before the tournament, this is one I really felt like I had a chance to win.  The thing is, I know I was around the right quality of fish; it just didn’t happen for me.  I have no excuses, but it’s frustrating because I can’t really pinpoint what went wrong.

Day one things started quickly as I boated a 4 and 4.5 pounder within the first part of the morning on a 7/16 oz Jewel Stephen Browning Magnum Casting Jig with a Z-Man Turbo Crawz (both in black and blue).  Then I was able to put together a limit and start the tournament with 16-13 which was well within striking distance.

The next day, things just didn’t happen for me.  There was an obvious shallow water deal that most of the field picked up on, but in practice I was able to get on some offshore fish.  I knew those fish were the quality that I needed if I wanted to have a chance to win this thing, but I was never able to locate them.  Obviously, the conditions we ran into with rising water and rain weren’t very conducive with offshore fishing, but I knew if I could find them I would have it to myself.  It just never happened for me and I ended up missing the cut by about a pound.

Anytime you are fishing a river system things will constantly change.  That is what I like about them and usually have success with, but this week I zigged when I should have zagged.  That’s fishing though.  It’s a humbling sport and that is part of what makes it so special.  I made it back home to Hot Springs and will have a little down time before Bass Fest at Lake Chickamauga, Tennessee.  I’m really looking forward to the event which will be the first of its kind.  Bass Fest should be a great event and I can’t wait to get back after it. -SB