By Marisa Dye
The fishermen’s expectations were high in the days leading up to the Eufaula Oklahoma Bass Federation qualifying tournament with water temperatures in the 60’s and some impressive practice fishing catches. However, conditions changed and many angler’s hopes were dashed by day two of the qualifier, which was held April 13th and 14th, 2015.
The top 20 of the 46 competitors caught a limit on Saturday, but weight decided the fate of those who would be in the top spots. Bedlam Bass Club member Tony Latta didn’t place in the top 12, but part of his two-fish catch was an impressive 5.78 lb. lunker. A couple of anglers made even bigger catches when they hooked themselves (in the finger and belly, respectively), but they removed the hooks and kept fishing. The top three bass fishermen all had a big fish in their limits that helped give them the edge over the competition.
Jackie Husman of Ponca City Bassmasters took 3rd by just 0.78 lbs over Dean Matts with a total weight of 14.86 lbs. including his largest bass which was 4.26 lbs. Stuart Ryan of Ada Bassmasters came in 2nd place with his limit weighing in at 15.45 lbs (largest bass at 4.58 lbs.). Northeastern Oklahoma Bassmasters member Ron Fuller took home 100 points for the day with his first place haul weighing 17.58 lbs. That sack included good-sized 4.60 lb. hog).
Overcast skies and fairly clear water made A-rigs and crank bait finesse fishing the name of the game on Sunday with only 9 full limits weighed in along with a slew of bags with fewer than five fish. Three of the four anglers in the top four spots on Saturday rose to the top again on Sunday. Their limits all included at least one fish weighing over four pounds.
The Bedlam Bass Club’s Brandon Moss weighed in five fish totaling 14.75 lbs. on Sunday, which was good enough for 3rd place by 0.19 lbs. over Stuart Ryan’s 4th place limit. Fuller, who took 1st on Saturday, came in 2nd with 17.43 lbs. Dean Matts of Central Oklahoma Bassmasters took 1st on Sunday with 18.25 lbs. of fish, including a 5.80 lb. beauty.
Final Qualifier Slated for May 2nd and 3rd
While the updated standings weren’t yet available at the time of this writing, it’s safe to say that the top six spots on the State team will be hotly contested on May 2nd and 3rd at the final qualifying tournament in Muskogee, better known to bass fishermen as “The Ditch”.
Saturday’s 1st place winner was Northeastern Oklahoma Bassmasters member Ron Fuller with a haul weighing 17.58 lbs.
Dean Matts of Central Oklahoma Bassmasters took 1st on Sunday with 18.25 lbs. of fish.