Pro Scott Martin of Clewiston, Florida, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 20 pounds even to extend his lead after Day Two of the Walmart FLW Tour at Lake Champlain presented by General Tire. Martin will bring a 3-pound, 9-ounce advantage into Day Three of the four-day competition that features 160 of the top bass-fishing anglers in the world competing for a top cash award of up to $125,000.
In second place is Bryan Schmitt of Deale, Maryland, who weighed in a five-bass limit totaling 21-5 Friday – the largest of the day – for a two-day cumulative total of 10 bass worth 38-12. The field is trimmed to the top 20 on Saturday, with only the top 10 anglers fishing on final day Sunday.
“This lake has been has been special to me,” said Martin, who has earned more than $2.39 million in FLW competition. “The first time I won in 2004, I did it with all spawning fish. The second time around in 2009, it was all largemouth. This time, I’ve got a mixture of both which I’m excited about.”
Martin said he returned to his area from Day One – an offshore location in the northern end of Lake Champlain that he refers to as ‘the reef’. He said he is rotating between four different baits, but withheld any specifics about their presentations.
“I only caught one good largemouth from the reef today,” said Martin. “I moved around and caught another decent one, but they’re not out there like they were yesterday. I know some little sweet spots here and there that I can milk. That’s my strength out there right now.”
In addition to the two largemouths, Martin said he rounded out his limit with three smallmouths.
“Thanks to the slick conditions, I was able to sight-fish for the smallmouths,” said Martin. “I had to run about 15 minutes for them, but I also had some other spots that I wasn’t able to check. If the weather is nice tomorrow, I’m going to go there again and see what is left.”
The Florida veteran said he plans to spend Day Three covering new water.
“For me, it’s all about confidence in your strengths,” said Martin. “I like to sight-fish, and I like to target largemouth in open water. With those two at my disposal, I have a lot of confidence in this lake.”
The top 20 pros that made the Buck Knives Cut and will fish Saturday on Lake Champlain are:
1st: Scott Martin, Clewiston, Fla., 10 bass, 42-5
2nd: Bryan Schmitt, Deale, Md., 10 bass, 38-12
3rd: Chris Johnston, Peterborough, Ontario, Canada, 10 bass, 38-9
4th: Walmart pro David Dudley, Lynchburg, Va., 10 bass, 38-6
5th: Cody Meyer, Auburn, Calif., 10 bass, 37-1
6th: Jason Meninger, Gainesville, Ga., 10 bass, 36-9
7th: Livingston Lures pro Stetson Blaylock, Benton, Ark., 10 bass, 36-7
8th: Lowrance pro Austin Felix, Eden Prairie, Minn., 10 bass, 36-6
9th: Yamamoto Baits pro Shinichi Fukae, Palestine, Texas, 10 bass, 35-1
10th: Livingston Lures pro Andy Morgan, Dayton, Tenn., 10 bass, 35-0
11th: Braxton Setzer, Montgomery, Ala., 10 bass, 34-11
12th: Jason Johnson, Gainesville, Ga., 10 bass, 34-10
13th: Terry Bolton, Paducah, Ky., 10 bass, 34-9
14th: Wesley Strader, Spring City, Tenn., 10 bass, 34-8
15th: Jacob Wheeler, Indianapolis, Ind., 10 bass, 34-3
16th: Curtis Richardson, Belleville, Ontario, Canada, 10 bass, 34-2
17th: GoPro pro Mike Kernan, Wylie, Texas, 10 bass, 34-0
18th: Bryan Thrift, Shelby, N.C., 10 bass, 34-0
19th: Clark Wendlandt, Leander, Texas, 10 bass, 34-0
20th: Quaker State pro Scott Canterbury, Springville, Ala., 10 bass, 34-0
For a full list of results visit FLWFishing.com.
Schmitt weighed in a 5-pound, 8-ounce largemouth to win the Big Bass Award on the pro side Friday and the $500 prize.
Overall there were 796 bass weighing 2,380 pounds, 6 ounces caught by 159 pros Friday. The catch included 158 five-bass limits.
Al Gagliarducci of West Suffield, Connecticut, won the co-angler division and $20,000 Friday with a two-day total of 10 bass weighing 33 pounds, 11 ounces, followed by David Hudson of Jasper, Alabama, who finished in second place with 10 bass weighing 31 pounds, 13 ounces worth $7,600.
The top 10 co-anglers finished:
1st: Al Gagliarducci, West Suffield, Conn., 10 bass, 33-11 $20,000
2nd: David Hudson, Jasper, Ala., 10 bass, 31-13 $7,500
3rd: Gary Haraguchi, Redding, Calif., 10 bass, 30-10, $5,000
4th: Edward Pecore, Plattsburgh, N.Y., 10 bass, 29-7, $4,000
5th: Darren Heavner, Fort Worth, Texas, 10 bass, 29-6 $3,000
6th: David Larson, Mound, Minn., 10 bass, 29-4, $2,500
7th: Benjie Seaborn, Guin, Ala., 10 bass, 28-14, $2,000
8th: Ralph Mulleins, Cumberland, Va., 10 bass, 28-11, $1,800
9th: Mike Schnupp, Apopka, Fla., 10 bass, 28-11, $1,700
10th: Shayne McFarlin, Martin, Ga., 10 bass, 28-9, $1,600
Jeff Jones of West Seneca, New York, earned the Big Bass Award on the co-angler side Friday with a bass weighing 6 pounds, 9 ounces to win the $250 prize.