The first flight weighed in at 3 p.m. and the second at 3:15. I didn’t expect a lot of fish being weighed in that day – but I was in for a rude awakening.
At 3 p.m. all heck broke lose: the bump tanks started to fill up and I had to ask the anglers to keep their fish in the live wells until we got caught up. Bud Malpass and his son Justin set the pace, weighing in seven fish for 18.68 pounds. Their big fish was 4.10 pounds.
Just before the second flight was to weigh in, the anglers started to ooh and ahh. John Martin and Bob Squalia came to the scales for a total weight of 34.57 pounds. Their big fish was 6.01. I thought the tournament was over.
Halfway into the second flight, Tom Floyd and Charlie Bowers came to the scales and I thought we could have a new leader. Until then, the big fish was 8.20 pounds, caught by Tom Lutz. Tom and Charlie’s fish, however, weighed an astounding 12.39 pounds to take over big-fish category.
Just when you thought it couldn’t get any better and the tournament was over, Tom Fereria and Geronimo Canjura’s big fish tipped the scales at 10.62 pounds, which took over second place for the big fish. Their total weight came to 40.28 pounds, a new Hook, Line & Sinker tournament record!
Tom Floyd and Charlie Bowers took third place with 32.24 pounds and got the big fish of the tournament. They caught their fish on a Rodstrainer chartreuse spinnerbait, white glimmer spinner baits and flipping grubs. Their best bite came at low outgoing tide and they caught the big fish with about 10 minutes left before they had to weigh in.
John and Bob took second place with 34.5 7 pounds. John said Bob was a great net man and they caught all their fish on jigs and Yamamoto Senkos on a bank they call the miracle bank.
Tom Fereria and Geronimo Canjura are both members of the Delta Bass Club, and Geronimo thanked the club members for allowing him to become a member and how much they’ve taught him. They said they didn’t have much going that day. They pulled up in a bank and caught a fish and noticed all the bait fish and decided to spend the entire day there.
They were both throwing crank baits along a deep ledge that adjoins a large flat. The fish were coming up to feed and to stage for spawning. The water temp was 53 degrees and their best bite was at high outgoing tide. Tom was throwing a chartreuse and white crank bait and Geronimo was throwing a crawdad patterned crankbait.
Congratulations to Tom and Geronimo and all the anglers for making the Hook Series a success for all these years. I also want to congratulate Tom and Paul Lutz, our highest point earners and 2011-12 Anglers of the Year.
The Hook Tournament of Champions is held March 3 and 4 at Russo’s Marina, Bethel Island. You can go to www.hookproshop.com for all the results and upcoming events.