University of Texas-Tyler team of Charlie Brown and Matthew McClellan,
won the National Guard FLW College Fishing Southern Conference event on
Toledo Bend Saturday with four bass weighing 15 pounds, 4 ounces. The
victory earned the team $5,000. The win also helped them advance to the
Southern Conference Championship.
“We didn’t get
our first fish until after 11 a.m.,” said McClellan, a senior majoring
in Kinesiology. “We had a pretty good practice and with wind were able
to find fish in shallow grassy points. The wind was blowing about 15-20
miles per hour this morning so we decided to start shallow. We made
about a 10 mile run and at 10 when we didn’t have a bite we decided to
move to a location closer to the launch site. By 10:30 we still didn’t
have a bite so we decided to go deep.
“We had graphed a
location that was full of concrete and brush about 10 to 12 feet deep,”
McClellan continued. “At 11:00 we finally caught our first keeper, it
was over 6-pounds! We then got a 4-pounder followed by a 1 ½-pounder and
the last fish we caught was a 4-pounder all within 45 minutes. We just
ran out of time; I think if we would have gotten to this spot earlier we
would have caught our limit and could have easily gotten a 20 pound
“Once we moved deep we switched to a football head jig. You really needed something that you could feel the bottom.”
This was the
first year the pair of seniors from the University of Texas – Tyler
fished together as a team. Finishing in the top-10 in the previous three
Southern Conference events, McClellan and Brown missed making the
top-five cut by ounces to qualify for the southern conference
championship making this victory even sweeter.
“Toledo Bend is
renowned for fishing deep,” said Brown a senior finance major. “I knew
the tournament couldn’t be won shallow, but with the wind and cloud
cover this morning we thought the bass would be feeding off the shallow
banks so decided to start on grassy humps with swim jigs and frogs. By
mid morning we decided that clearly wasn’t working so decided to go
“The bite was
really slow,” Brown continued. “You really had to fish very slow and
methodically. But, like Matthew said, I think if we would have gone to
our deep spot a little earlier we would have had a huge sack, we just
didn’t have enough time there to get it today.
Brown who will celebrate his birthday tomorrow said of their victory that this was an early present for him.
Rounding out the top five teams and also advancing to the Southern Conference Championship are:
2nd: Angelo State – Josh Seale and Ethan George, 12-14, $1,500
3rd: Arkansas Tech University – Reagan Moore and Evan Barnes, 10-11, $1,000
4th: Lamar University – Danny Iles and Justin Royal, 10-5, $1,000
5th: Louisiana State University-Shreveport – Joseph Landry and Gavin Havard, 9-1, $1,000
Complete results can be found at FLWOutdoors.com.