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Oldham/Reaction Takes Anglers Choice Rayburn Team
By Ed Snyder

Anglers Choice East Texas Team Circuit
August 13, 2000, Twin Dikes Marina, Lake Sam Rayburn, TX.

With a 112 -plus- degree heat index radiating from the 103 -plus- degree temperatures 100 anglers teamed up to fish the final Anglers Choice East Texas team circuit on Lake Sam Rayburn. As the 3:pm flights began checking in, one team managed locate the winning key for unlocking enough bass bites from the "shimmering glare" of the HOT August sun to catch a 5 bass/15.66 lb first place weigh-in.

October 6 & 7 will be the Championship dates for the Texas Division of the Anglers Choice Team Circuit, announced Tournament Director, Randy Knight, "which will be right here at Twin Dikes Marina on Lake Sam Rayburn. "The Championship will award 5 boats this year, Randy informed, as he began to name the top 15 slots and 20 wildcard options for the Championship, as well as introducing the "East Texas Team Anglers of the Year" team of Matt Reed of Madisonville TX, and Rickey Friedrich of Houston TX, who had accumulated 764.64 points for their tournament season.

1st place team-(5 bass/15.66 lbs)- Mike Lantier of Lafayette LA, and Charles Lester of Many LA, put their Procraft/Mercury bass-rig over Buck Bay grass-edges to work Kistler rods and Shimano reels spooled with 35 lb test Spider-Wire. "We concentrated our fishing efforts to the outside grass-edges in 8' to 11' water, informed the 1st place team as they told of fishing 1 oz pumpkin/pepper Oldham jigs with green/pumpkin Reaction Gator-Pups that put a 5 bite/5 bass catch in their cull betwixt an11:am to 2:pm bite.

2nd place team-(3 bass/15.16 lbs)- "Falcon rods and Shimano reels spooled with 60 lb test Dyneema braid and 25 lb test Lynch braid, explained Randy Michalec of Willis TX, and Russell Cecil of Waxahatchie TX, as they informed of running their Triton/Mercury to south-lake grass-beds. "We mainly flipped Florida rigged pumpkin-pepper/green Larew craws and 1 oz pumpkin/green "little gator" Oldham jigs with pumpkin/green Larew craws, they announced as they informed of keeping to 12' to 13' outside grass-edges. "We had four bites today between 10:am to 1:pm, landing 3 and loosing one which was about 6 lbs, gritted Randy as he told of catching the first bass at 10:am, a 6.54 lb "kicker" that held as the 2nd big bass of the tournament.

3rd place team-(5 bass/14.91 lbs)- Ranger/Mercury got us there, stated Stephen Johnston of Hemphill TX, and Mike Cortelloni of Many LA. "We worked Kistler rods and Shimano reels spooled with 15 lb test Triple-Fish mono and 45 lb test Triple-Fish braid, they informed, further explaining that they fished 1 oz camo Mr. Blitz jigs with camo Reaction craws and Florida rigged redbug Zoom "Old Monster" worms along Buck Bay and Highway 146 area grass-beds. "We managed to catch our 3rd place finish from a 9 bass bite along 11' outside grass-edges, they stated.

"Overall" Big Bass- 6.97 lbs)- "Caught it on a Castaway rod and Shimano reel spooled with 50 lb test Spider-Wire while fishing a 3/4 oz black/brown/amber Mega-Bite jig with a Larew pumpkin-green/red-flake craw, explained Joel James, informing that the 6.97 lb big bass hit from an 8' to 10' south-lake grass-hump on a 9:am bite.

Top 5 Teams:
1-Mike Lantier/C.J. Lester--------------5 bass/15.66-$1,460
2-Mike Michalec/Russell Cecil--------3 bass/15.16-$730
3-Stephen Johnston/Mike Cortelloni--5 bass/14.91-$645
4-Stan Burgay/Lance Hughes----------5 bass/14.27-$545
5-Rusty Harvey/David Harvey---------5 bass/13.87-$445

"Overall" Big Bass-(6.97 lbs)- Joel James/Sam Creel-$300
2nd Big Bass-(6.54 lbs)- Randy Michalec/Russell Cecil-$200

All Bass live released by Anglers Choice fish recovery with 187 bass weighing 424 lbs.

For more info on the Anglers Choice tournament circuits contact Randy Knight at (409)-694-7634.

Anglers Choice Team Sponsors: BassCat, Berkley, Mercury, TH Marine, Abu-Garcia, DieHard, Fenwick, Big Foot, Please Release Me, MotorGuide, eAngler, Cabela's, Ramada Inn Jasper, Holiday Inn Express, Needmore Tackle, "and" the A/C Team anglers.

E/TX "Team Anglers of the Year" Reed -L- and Friedrich kneeling with 1st -L- and 3rd -R- standing-(2nd not available

Joel James with 6.97 lb "overall"
< photos by Ed Snyder >

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