DRAGONFLY - RAYMARINE

AARON MARTENS LEADS AFTER DAY THREE AT La CROSSE

Posted by Z3 MEDIA TEAM on 06/22/2013

Story by Matt Pangrac and Dave Rush - Photos by Dave Rush

The 5 Day Three Facts from the Mississippi River: 
Tournament: Bassmaster Elite Series (June 20-23)
Location:  Mississippi River – La Crosse, Wisconsin   
Leader/weight:  Aaron Martens (14-4, 17-3, 16-15: 47-12)
12th place weight: Randy Howell (40-14)
Total weight separating 1st place from 2nd place: 7 ounces

1st Place: Aaron Martens (14-4, 17-3, 16-15: 47-12)
What were your expectations heading into the day?
“I told my wife that I could come in with 7 or 8 (pounds), but I thought that I’d have between 14 and 16 pounds.  I’m a little bit more concerned about tomorrow, because realistically I may have between 12 and 14 pounds tomorrow but I could get another 16 pounds.” 

How would you summarize your day as a whole? 
“The first few days, it was really easy.  I had to slow down today and fish more methodically while covering more water.  Before, I could just cast to one spot and catch them every cast.  I only have one spot where I’ve caught big ones, and I’m calling that spot the “mayfly hole.” 

“I ended up weighing-in the first three that I caught, which was really cool.  I ended up culling my fourth fish, and my fifth fish was my big one.  So far, I think that I’ve fished a perfect tournament with what I have, but it’s going to come down to who has the better area or more fish on the final day. 

“I had all largemouth today, and the only smallmouth that I’ve weighed in was on the first day of the tournament.”

Was there a key moment for you during the day?
“My limit fish was a fatty, and that was pretty cool.  Other than that, I really didn’t have any key moments because I didn’t catch them just ‘bam, bam, bam.’  The big bite came in the morning and it was off of a weird place.  I spent a lot of time fan casting and covering a lot of water in the area because the big ones have left the single spot.” 

What was the most challenging/surprising aspect of your day?
“Nothing out of the ordinary happened.  I was just going through the motions and catching them.”

How would you assess your decision making and execution on the water?
“I lost one today that felt pretty good even though I never hooked it.  The way that it swam towards the boat and the way that it bit, I think that it could have been a big one because it was in the same area where I caught a big one yesterday.” 

2nd Place: Tommy Biffle (14-0, 16-0, 17-5: 47-5)
What were your expectations heading into the day?
“I had high expectations because I knew that I was going to catch them good – I just didn’t know how good.” 

How would you summarize your day as a whole? 
“I probably caught over 50 fish today.  I caught about 1% smallmouth and the rest largemouth.  I did the same thing that I did yesterday.  I caught about 12 pounds in largemouth flippin’, and then I decided to go to my smallmouth spot and catch a couple.  

“Today, there were a lot of boats following me, so I told my guy that I needed to run around some islands or something to get away from them and lose them.  I ran around and a few of the boats moved and left.  I ran around the islands again, and I ended up with two followers.  I went to my smallmouth area and caught three quick.  I ended the day with three smallmouth and two largemouth.”

Was there a key moment for you during the day?
“It was a steady progression today.  The first fish that I caught was probably a 4 pound largemouth and the next one was a 3 pounder.  Up here, those are two good ones.” 

What was the most challenging/surprising aspect of your day?
“The most challenging part of the day was waiting until enough spectator boats left me so that I felt comfortable running to my smallmouth spot. I didn’t even want to fish the spot today, and I was hoping that I’d catch 15 pounds of largemouth and not have to mess with it.”

How would you assess your decision making and execution on the water?
“I put everything in the boat.” 

3rd Place: John Crews (15-7, 13-1, 14-6: 42-14)
What were your expectations heading into the day?
“I knew that I needed at least 13 pounds to make the top 12, so that was my main goal.  I also wanted to stay in contention, so that was my second goal going into the day.”

How would you summarize your day as a whole? 
“The first fish that I put in the boat was a 4 pounder. I knew that I had my big fish that would up my average way up, so I spent the rest of my time focusing on putting four 2 ½ to 3 pounders in the boat.  I was able to do that, and then some.”
 
Was there a key moment for you during the day?
“Catching the 4 pounder first thing this morning really settled me down and gave me a good starting point for the rest of the day.”

What was the most challenging/surprising aspect of your day?
“One of the most pleasant and nice surprises was the fact that Dennis Tietje and I were fishing the same general area yesterday.  He saw me in there this morning and asked me if I was catching them.  I told him that I had three, and he wished me luck and told me that he was getting out of the area so that I could have it.  I would have done the same thing for him, but it was a really nice move.” 

How would you assess your decision making and execution on the water?
“I lost a couple that would have really helped me.  I lost one that was over 3 pounds, and I lost another one that was really big. I also just didn’t hook up with a number of fish, and that told me that there were more fish moving into the area and the conditions are getting better.  Even though I didn’t land them, I like the fact that I was getting the bites.” 

4th Place: Brandon Card (14-9, 13-9, 14-6; 42-8)
What were your expectations heading into the day?
"With the conditions about the same, with the clouds and wind, I was thinking it should be about the same.  Fortunately it was, they really chewed and I was able to catch about 20 keepers."

How would you summarize your day as a whole?
"Today was pretty similar to yesterday, because they really ate well.  I was fortunate enough to get two big bites at the end of the day and cull.  I ended up just staying in my main area today and seeing how much I could catch, instead of laying off of it.  We will have to see how that works out, because it looks like I am going to have some ground to make up."

Was there a key moment for you during the day?
"Catching those two bigger fish late in the day was definitely the key for me.  I gained at least a pound with those two culls, and both of them came late in the day so that was huge."

What was the most challenging/surprising aspect of your day?
"There was a really big lull in the action for me today.  I went quite a while without a bite and had to change up my bait selection to start catching them again, so that was challenging. "

How would you assess your decision making and execution on the water?
"Everything went pretty well as far as execution and decision making goes.  I made the decision to stick with one area, and I was able to put all of my key bites in the boat."

5th Place: Fred Roumbanis  (14-4, 13-6, 13-15; 41-9)
What were your expectations heading into the day?
"I figured that I could catch 13 or 14 pounds today.  Anything over that is really tough to do out here, but I thought that I could hit that mark again today, so it was a good day."

How would you summarize your day as a whole?
"Today I actually started on a secondary spot because my best spot had a little too much wind on it.  It ended up being a good decision because I caught a good one right of the bat.  Once that little front rolled through it calmed down a good bit and I was able o go to my main deal and catch most of my weight.  I probably caught like 20 keepers today, so it was a lot of fun out there."

Was there a key moment for you during the day?
"The key moment for me was when the wind finally died down.  It needs to be calm on my primary area, so when it quit blowing I was happy."

What was the most challenging/surprising aspect of your day?
"It is really just a grind the way I am fishing.  Although I am catching a lot of fish it isn't easy to get them to bite.  Plus I have to go through a lot of fish to cull up to my final weight each day."

How would you assess your decision making and execution on the water?
"I missed some bites today that looked pretty big, but I am really not sure that they were all bass.  As far as my decision making, I am really happy with how that went today."

DAY 3 STANDINGS

 

Place ELITE PRO Day 1Day 2Day 3 Total Fish Total Weight
FishWeightFishWeightFishWeight
1 Aaron Martens 5 14- 4 5 17- 3 5 16- 5 15 47-12
2 Tommy Biffle 5 14- 0 5 16- 0 5 17- 5 15 47- 5
3 John Crews 5 15- 7 5 13- 1 5 14- 6 15 42-14
4 Brandon Card 5 14- 9 5 13- 9 5 14- 6 15 42- 8
5 Fred Roumbanis 5 14- 4 5 13- 6 5 13-15 15 41- 9
6 Takahiro Omori 5 14- 3 5 12- 9 5 14-12 15 41- 8
7 Bobby Lane 5 14- 5 5 11- 9 5 15- 4 15 41- 2
8 Cliff Pirch 5 14-11 5 11-12 5 14-11 15 41- 2
9 Todd Faircloth 5 14- 5 5 13-15 5 12-14 15 41- 2
10 Edwin Evers 5 13- 5 5 12- 6 5 15- 3 15 40-14
11 Cliff Crochet 5 13-12 5 13- 0 5 14- 2 15 40-14
12 Randy Howell 5 13-14 5 13- 8 5 13- 8 15 40-14
13 Greg Vinson 5 13- 6 5 14- 1 5 13- 5 15 40-12
14 Casey Scanlon 5 14- 5 5 11-14 5 14- 0 15 40- 3
15 Ott DeFoe 5 13-10 5 13-13 5 12- 5 15 39-12
16 David Walker 5 12- 8 5 13- 0 5 13-15 15 39- 7
17 Yusuke Miyazaki 5 13- 5 5 12-13 5 13- 3 15 39- 5
18 Josh Bertrand 5 13- 1 5 12- 8 5 13-11 15 39- 4
19 Dean Rojas 5 12-14 5 12-14 5 13- 8 15 39- 4
20 Alton Jones 5 12-15 5 12-14 5 13- 5 15 39- 2
21 Scott Rook 5 10-12 5 15-11 5 12- 9 15 39- 0
22 Keith Combs 5 12-15 5 13- 2 5 12-15 15 39- 0
23 Cliff Pace 5 12- 7 5 13- 0 5 13- 6 15 38-13
24 Kevin VanDam 5 13- 6 5 12- 2 5 13- 0 15 38- 8
25 Rick Morris 5 12- 2 5 12- 6 5 13- 9 15 38- 1
26 John Murray 5 11-14 5 12- 5 5 13-13 15 38- 0
27 Kevin Short 5 12- 4 5 12- 3 5 13- 8 15 37-15
28 Kevin Hawk 5 16- 0 5 9-11 5 12- 3 15 37-14
29 Chris Zaldain 5 11-14 5 11-14 5 14- 1 15 37-13
30 Skeet Reese 5 14- 4 5 12- 1 5 10-12 15 37- 1
31 Brent Chapman 5 11-10 5 12- 1 5 13- 5 15 37- 0
32 Davy Hite 5 12- 4 5 12- 1 5 12- 8 15 36-13
33 Ish Monroe 5 12- 2 5 11-14 5 12- 8 15 36- 8
34 Paul Elias 5 14- 1 5 10- 8 5 11-14 15 36- 7
35 Michael Iaconelli 5 12- 5 5 11-10 5 12- 7 15 36- 6
36 Kelly Jordon 5 10- 2 5 14- 1 5 11-15 15 36- 2
37 Casey Ashley 5 12- 6 5 11- 7 5 12- 1 15 35-14
38 J Todd Tucker 5 13-12 5 9-10 5 12- 5 15 35-11
39 Shaw E Grigsby 5 12-13 5 11-13 4 10-11 14 35- 5
40 Grant Goldbeck 5 12-12 5 11-10 5 10-15 15 35- 5
41 Stephen Kennedy 5 12- 9 5 11- 3 5 11- 1 15 34-13
42 Matthew Herren 5 14- 0 5 11- 4 5 9- 7 15 34-11
43 Billy McCaghren 5 13- 6 5 11- 4 5 9-15 15 34- 9
44 Bill Lowen 5 11-14 5 11- 7 5 11- 4 15 34- 9
45 Fletcher Shryock 5 11- 5 5 12- 8 5 10- 9 15 34- 6
46 Michael Simonton 5 13- 9 5 11- 5 5 9- 6 15 34- 4
47 Chris Lane 5 13- 7 5 10- 9 4 9- 8 14 33- 8
48 Dennis Tietje 5 12- 4 5 11- 4 5 9-15 15 33- 7
49 Pete Ponds 5 11- 5 5 12- 4 4 7- 4 14 30-13
50 Stephen Browning 4 11- 5 5 12- 0     9 23- 5