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Ayish Bayou pattern takes A/C amateur win

"We fished bald spots within scattered grass," said Loran Compton of Willis TX, as he told how he and team partner, Dan Hilton of Conroe TX put their winning pattern together to win Sam Rayburn's Anglers Choice Amateur Team event, on Saturday January 30, 1999. The Witt Marine duo maneuvered their Triton/Johnson bass rig up Ayish Bayou, where they worked Castaway rods with Ambassadeur and Team Daiwa reels spooled with 14# Silver Thread mono. "We covered 8' - 12' points with Carolina rigged lizards. We must have caught 30 bass today, allowing us to cull through 3 limits of keepers to scale our 5 bass/15.39 lb weigh-in." Their efforts won them a first place check for $1,250. Loran also cashed in on the 2nd place big bass with a 5.83 lb. "kicker" worth $270.

A surprising finish, to say the least, as 96 teamed amateur anglers were to launch into fast rising waters which had just received a one foot "storm surge".

Practice day pre-front storms ravaged the area with thunder storms and flash flood alerts as 192 anglers poised to compete in the 1st event of the 1999 season for the Anglers Choice Amateur Team Series. And after a long night of adverse weather conditions dumping 7" to 8" of rain on the lake system, causing a dramatic rise in the lakes level, as well as a dramatic change in its clarity, the anglers would find muddy run-offs and cruising floatsum in the creeks that had previously provided some exceptional bass fishing. But some of those anglers would be able to use that adversity to their advantage as they targeted off-colored water to work their catching patterns that would find a winning weigh-in at Twin Dikes Marina.

"Grass tippin'", winked Nick Albus of Trinity TX, as he received his 2nd place plaque. "We were working a 12' ridgeline in the southlake area."

His partner, Edwin Loitz, also of Trinity, added that they used shad colored Norman DD-22's to "tip" their grass-tops with. The Miller Lite team managed to work from the deck of their Champion/Mercury with Castaway & Falcon rods, rigged with Garcia reels that were spooled with 14# braided Fireline. "We probably caught 8 keepers from a prime bite that occurred between 8:30 and 9:00 a.m.," stated Edwin. The Trinity TX duo would cull a 5 bass/14.41 lb. 2nd place check for $940.

"Muddy", gritted Lufkin TX angler, Daniel Cross. "We worked 1/2 oz. chartreuse/white Hawg Hustler spinner baits and 1/2 oz. black/blue jigs along 7' inside grasslines. He explained how he, and team partner, Jerry Wise of Lufkin, were able to cruise their Champion/Mercury between inside grass and brushlines to work Castaway and Allstar rods with Garcia reels spooled with 20# and 17# Mason Mono, while fishing a 9:30 to 10:00 a.m. bite for 12 bass that would cull to 5 bass/14.35 lbs. and a 3rd place check for $660.

"Two p.m.", announced Chuck Dodd, as the Willis TX angler informed of when he caught his "braggin' rights" to the overall big bass check for $450. "I nailed it on a black/blue 1/2 oz Mega-bite jig with a black/chartreuse craw," Chuck grinned, as his partner, Alan Cazares, also of Willis, told of netting his partner's 6.03 bass from a 12' northlake grassline.

All Bass were live released at tournament site with 221 bass weighing 464.50 lbs.

Next Amateur tournament is scheduled for February 20, at Frontier Park Marina on Lake Toledo Bend, TX. For more information on this, as well as other Anglers Choice Tournament events, contact tournament director, Randy Knight, at (409)-694-7634 -or- Johnny Davis at 817-326-5821.

Tournament sponsors: BassCat, Mercury, Diehard, Gary Yamato Custom Baits, MotorGuide, T-H Marina, Big Foot, Please Release Me, Ramada Inn Jasper, Holiday Inn Express Jasper, Cedar Tree Restaurant, Capt. Kirk's Marine.

Top 5 Amateur Teams:

  • 1-Loran Compton/Dan Hilton 5 bass 15.39 lbs $1,250
  • 2-Nick Albus/Edwin Loitz 5 bass 14/41 lbs. $940
  • 3-Daniel Cross/Jerry Wise 5 bass 14.35 lbs. $660
  • 4-Jeff Lognion/Ronnie Teal 5 bass 14.18 lbs $560
  • 5-Chuck Dodd/Alan Cazares 5 bass 13.44 lbs. $495

Overall Big Bass
(6.03)-Chuck Dodd-$450

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