Pro Kelly Jordon of Flint, Texas, brought a five-bass limit to the scale Sunday weighing 22 pounds, 9 ounces – the largest limit weighed in the three-day event – to vault to the top of the leaderboard and win the MLF Tackle Warehouse Invitational Epic Baits Stop 3 at Lake Eufaula Presented by B&W Trailer Hitches and the top prize of $83,500. Jordon’s three-day total of 15 bass weighing 57-3 earned him the victory by a 2-pound, 14-ounce margin over second-place finisher Drew Gill of Mount Carmel, Illinois, who caught 15 bass weighing 54-5, good for $50,000.
Jordon did a lot of internet work pre-tournament, which paid off with his winning spot at the bottom end of the lake and most of his good places elsewhere.
“I found a lot of stuff (on the web),” Jordon said. “I could run all over this lake and catch fish, I like to fish how this lake is fishing right now.”
As for his key areas, Jordon concentrated on a couple of subtle areas in 3 to 6 feet of water – places that quality fish could stage slightly off the beaten track.
“It’s a secondary point that has rock on it, that’s outside of sand,” he said of his best spot. “You wouldn’t know there’s a rock point, I looked for it, a lot of Google Earth – I found several deals like that.”
As for catching the fish this week, Jordon kept it pretty simple. A Lucky Craft Fat CB BDS 2 did damage, as well as a 1/2-ounce vibrating jig with a Lake Fork Live Magic Shad.
Jordon started the day Sunday in fourth place, but he knew that he wasn’t out of contention. With the caliber of fish biting, he knew that a comeback was definitely possible.
“I had a pretty good practice, I had a lot of stuff everywhere,” Jordon said. “The first day, I used it to see what I had. I ran all my stuff, I like to do that, I like to mark my trees.
“I thought I could catch them pretty good in Longtown Creek, and I ended up catching a 7-pound limit. I ran some other stuff; finally caught a 3-pounder, and tried to expand. But, my end goal was to fish my special stuff, and I waited until other people left, and caught five fish there, and they culled all my other fish.”
As soon as he caught five for 16-11 off his juice, Jordon got the heck out of Dodge so others wouldn’t see him on it.
“(Leaving early) was not real smart, going into today, I had a 6-pound deficit,” he said. “I made a really bad mental mistake.”
It ended up not costing him, and he rode his pattern to victory.
“Today, I just started there,” Jordon said. “I knew there were big fish there, that I could catch 20 pounds. The wind was ripping, and there were giant waves rolling in. I’m almost surprised I caught what I did. I only caught five down there, and I only caught three on my juice.”
Though he may have had the event sealed before the final fish, Jordon made a last-minute stop on two more little rock patches and caught one more upgrade to put the exclamation mark on the day.
“I had an opportunity to get in this tournament, I figured it would be fabulous fishing, and dad gum it was. Today was so good, it just rolled my way all day, to win this event, I don’t even know what to say, it was just a blessed day.”
The top 20 pros at the Tackle Warehouse Invitational Epic Baits Stop 3 at Lake Eufaula finished:
- Kelly Jordon, Flint, Texas, 15 bass, 57-3, $83,500
- Drew Gill, Mount Carmel, Ill., 15 bass, 54-5, $50,000
- Ron Nelson, Berrien Springs, Mich., 15 bass, 52-4, $20,000
- Scotty Villines, Ponca, Ark., 15 bass, 50-5, $18,200
- Cody Spetz, Hollister, Mo., 15 bass, 49-3, $17,000
- Braxton Setzer, Wetumpka, Ala., 15 bass, 48-6, $16,300
- Tai Au, Glendale, Ariz., 15 bass, 47-0, $15,000
- Jeff Reynolds, Calera, Okla., 15 bass, 45-10, $14,000
- Shonn Goodwin, Moore, Okla., 15 bass, 45-6, $13,000
- Michael Neal, Dayton, Tenn., 15 bass, 44-0, $12,000
- Jaden Parrish, Liberty, Texas, 14 bass, 43-6, $10,000
- Phillip Dutra, Guntersville, Ala., 15 bass, 43-5, $10,000
- Grae Buck, Green Lane, Penn., 15 bass, 43-4, $10,000
- Clayton Batts, Butler, Ga, 15 bass, 42-14, $10,000
- Martin Villa, Charlottesville, Va., 15 bass, 42-14, $10,000
- Hunter Mills, Mayfield, Ky., 15 bass, 42-11, $10,000
- Travis Harriman, Huntsville, Ark., 15 bass, 41-14, $10,000
- Terry Olinger, Louisa, Va., 14 bass, 41-13, $10,000
- Chris Jones, Bokoshe, Okla., 15 bass, 41-9, $10,000
- Chad Mrazek, Montgomery, Texas, 15 bass, 41-7, $10,000
Complete results for the entire field can be found at MajorLeagueFishing.com.