DRAGONFLY - RAYMARINE

HITE IN COMMAND ON SEMINOLE

Posted by Z3 MEDIA STAFF on 03/15/2014

Story by Matt Pangrac

Bainbridge, GA - Brett Hite extended his lead in a big way on Saturday at the Bassmaster Elite Series tournament on Lake Seminole.  After rolling to the scales with limits weighing 24-11 and 20-11 in the opening two rounds, the Arizona pro turned in a 26-5 effort on Saturday to distance himself from his nearest competitor by nearly 10-pounds.  

With a three-day total weight of 71-11, Hite has a lead of 9-12 with one day remaining in the tournament.  

While many of the top finishers have relied on at least one limit surpassing the 25-pound mark this week, Mark Davis has been the model of consistency.  The veteran pro has turned limits weighing 21-0, 20-13, and 20-2 to take over 2nd place with 61-15.  

Bernie Schultz ended Saturday in 3rd place with a total weight of 61-10.  After catching 26-14 on Thursday and 17-10 on Friday, the Florida pro brought a limit weighing 17-2 to the scales on Saturday.  Kevin Short remained in the mix with a 17-8 limit on Saturday to finish in 4th place

The big mover on Saturday was Aaron Martens, who weighed-in 29-11 to jump up to 5th place.  

Andy Montgomery rounded out the Top 12 fishing on Sunday with a total weight of 54-14.

1st Place: Brett Hite (24-11, 20-11, 26-5: 71-11)
Hite on managing his substantial lead:
“Mark (Davis) has been really consistent catching 20-pound stringers. If I get six to eight bites tomorrow and catch them, I’ll have between 15- and 20-pounds because the fish that I’m getting to bite are all big ones.  The conditions are really looking good for me with the stormy weather and the wind.   

Hite on his consistent quality:
“I’m just fishing areas where the big ones are moving up to get ready to spawn.  I’m fishing pre-spawn bass and there’s a big group of them.  It’s not like bed fishing where you’re going to catch five and they’re not going to come back.  These fish are migrating to the areas, and that’s how I’m catching them.”

Hite on executing his pre-tournament game plan:
“Coming into this tournament, this is the way that I wanted to fish.  I know that normally this time of the year on Seminole, most of the spawn is done.  With the late spring, I knew that the conditions would still be heavy pre-spawn.  I only had two bites on my second day of practice, but they were both 5-pounders.  I dialed it in a little bit more on the third day of practice and caught them pretty well.   There’s definitely a pattern to where the fish are at and where they’re positioning.”

Hite on entering the final day with a lead of nearly 10-pounds:
“When I won the FLW Tour even earlier in the year, it was a little different because I have more areas in this tournament.  At Okeechobee, I had a couple key spots and I think a lot of the fish were spawners that I wasn’t seeing.  Here, I think that almost all of my fish are pre-spawners. My first Tour victory of my career was on Lake Toho, and I won that tournament by nearly 20-pounds, so I have been in this situation before.”

2nd Place: Mark Davis (21-0, 20-13, 20-2: 61-15)
Davis on the current conditions on Seminole:
“Actually, I think that these fish are getting ready to go in (to spawn).  They’re around spawning areas, but they haven’t moved up yet.  There are a few of them that are up already, but there are a lot of fish that are still waiting to move up on beds.  I’m actually catching some going, some coming, and some that are actually spawning.

“On the first day, it was a slow, all day grind sight fishing.  Yesterday, I caught all my fish early.  Today, I caught fish all day long but they bit better in the afternoon.  I really like what the weather is going to do tomorrow with the storms.  The fish should really bite tomorrow with the storms and cloud cover expected.  It should be a good day to fish, and I’d be surprised if we don’t see the biggest weights of the tournament tomorrow.”

Davis on his consistency over the first three days:
“I didn’t really know going into this tournament what type of fish I was on.  I knew that I was on a 20-pound stringer, but I was hoping for more. I haven’t boated a 6-pounder yet this week.  I’ve been catching a lot of 4- to 5-pound fish.  Where I’m fishing, there are a lot of 3- to 5-pound fish but there probably aren’t a lot of fish bigger than that.  At this point in the game, you just have to ride it out and see where it takes you.”

3rd Place: Bernie Schultz (26-14, 17-10, 17-2: 61-10)
Schultz on the changing conditions:
“I’m running out of big fish.  I didn’t see any big fish yesterday and I didn’t see any big fish today. I’m seeing a lot of males, so I’m thinking that the females should be showing up but they aren’t.   I’m thinking of taking some risks tomorrow and doing something different.  

“Even though my starting spot has been good to me, it’s pretty evident that it’s not a place where I’ll be able to win and I really want a shot at winning this thing. To do that, I’ll have to take a few chances.  There’s a completely different weather pattern coming in, and I’m planning on adjusting.  There are places where I’ve caught them in the past under the conditions that are expected.”

FINAL STANDINGS

PlaceNameDay 1Day 2Day 3Total FishTotal Weight
FishWeightFishWeightFishWeight
1 Brett Hite 5 24-11 5 20-11 5 26- 5 15 71-11
2 Mark Davis 5 21- 0 5 20-13 5 20- 2 15 61-15
3 Bernie Schultz 5 26-14 5 17-10 5 17- 2 15 61-10
4 Kevin Short 5 25- 9 5 17-10 5 17- 8 15 60-11
5 Aaron Martens 5 17- 5 5 13- 0 5 29-11 15 60- 0
6 Shaw Grigsby 5 30- 5 5 12- 5 5 16- 9 15 59- 3
7 Takahiro Omori 5 19-11 5 14-15 5 23-12 15 58- 6
8 Justin Lucas 5 17- 8 5 25- 9 5 15- 3 15 58- 4
9 Byron Velvick 5 16- 7 4 17- 4 5 24- 8 14 58- 3
10 Todd Faircloth 5 20-15 5 12- 4 5 23-12 15 56-15
11 Charlie Hartley 5 19- 7 5 16- 1 5 20- 8 15 56- 0
12 Andy Montgomery 5 15-10 5 15-11 5 23- 9 15 54-14
13 Jared Lintner 5 14- 9 5 21- 5 5 17-11 15 53- 9
14 Jason Christie 5 14- 5 5 18- 5 5 20-12 15 53- 6
15 Chad Morgenthaler 5 20-10 5 22- 6 4 9-10 14 52-10
16 James Niggemeyer 5 19- 7 4 18- 2 4 14- 5 13 51-14
17 Alton Jones 5 14- 9 5 19- 7 5 17-10 15 51-10
18 David Walker 5 21- 4 5 12- 5 5 18- 0 15 51- 9
19 Gerald Swindle 5 16-15 5 18- 2 5 15-12 15 50-13
20 Nate Wellman 5 15- 5 5 21- 5 5 14- 1 15 50-11
21 Brandon Lester 5 18- 6 5 17- 9 5 14- 2 15 50- 1
22 Randall Tharp 5 17- 0 5 20- 7 5 12- 9 15 50- 0
23 Hank Cherry 5 23- 3 5 14-10 4 12- 0 14 49-13
24 Stephen Browning 5 14-11 5 15-13 5 19- 4 15 49-12
25 Morizo Shimizu 5 19- 2 5 17- 6 4 13- 1 14 49- 9
26 Brian Snowden 5 20- 3 5 14- 7 5 14- 4 15 48-14
27 Ott DeFoe 5 17-11 5 16- 4 5 13-13 15 47-12
28 Bill Lowen 5 13- 3 5 16-15 5 16- 5 15 46- 7
29 Jacob Powroznik 5 14-12 5 15-11 5 15-11 15 46- 2
30 Matthew Herren 5 15- 4 5 14-13 5 15- 3 15 45- 4
31 Cliff Pirch 5 18- 7 5 12- 7 5 14- 3 15 45- 1
32 Kevin VanDam 5 17- 9 5 14- 8 5 12-15 15 45- 0
33 Kotaro Kiriyama 5 12- 3 5 15-13 5 16- 2 15 44- 2
34 Chris Lane 5 18- 6 5 9-10 5 15-15 15 43-15
35 Skeet Reese 5 16- 7 5 11- 1 5 16- 7 15 43-15
36 Dean Rojas 5 18- 9 5 13- 4 5 11-11 15 43- 8
37 Cliff Prince 5 13- 8 4 14-13 5 15- 1 14 43- 6
38 Greg Hackney 2 5- 0 5 23-15 5 14- 3 12 43- 2
39 Josh Bertrand 5 17- 8 5 13-10 3 11- 9 13 42-11
40 Ish Monroe 5 12- 3 5 19-13 4 9- 0 14 41- 0
41 J Todd Tucker 4 18-14 2 8- 6 4 13- 6 10 40-10
42 Mike Kernan 5 14- 8 5 16- 8 3 9- 6 13 40- 6
43 Russ Lane 5 12- 8 5 17-15 3 9-11 13 40- 2
44 Kelly Jordon 5 15- 5 4 17-10 3 6-13 12 39-12
45 Jeremy Starks 5 16- 0 4 12-11 4 10- 1 13 38-12
46 Davy Hite 5 18- 8 5 10-11 4 8- 7 14 37-10
47 Kelley Jaye 5 15- 3 5 14- 0 5 8- 7 15 37-10
48 Timmy Horton 4 10- 7 5 17- 4 3 9- 5 12 37- 0
49 Kurt Dove 5 17- 0 5 10- 4 3 9- 9 13 36-13
50 Tommy Biffle 5 23-13 4 6- 8 2 5- 5 11 35-10