Only seven fish were caught before 10 a.m. during the second of three elimination rounds at the Major League Fishing Summit Cup at Michigan's Lake Hubbard, but the remainder of the day saw 60 come aboard the boats of the nine competing anglers. The competitor who led the way with a nine-fish, 29-07 haul did all of his damage between 12:42 and 3:36 p.m. His biggest fish was a 5-09 smallmouth.
Weights were much tighter than on day 1, when one angler amassed 54 pounds and no others had more than 23-07. The No. 2 qualifier on day 2 had 25-15 and No. 3 boated 22-03.
Anglers competing on day 2 were Brent Chapman, Shaw Grigsby, Greg Hackney, Tim Horton, Mike Iaconelli, Alton Jones, Ish Monroe, Andy Montgomery and Jacob Wheeler.
The No. 4 qualifier caught a day-best 14 fish, but they averaged just 1-06. The last-place guy averaged better than 4 pounds per fish, but he only caught two.
Finesse worms fished offshore were again the predominant program. The total haul consisted of 63 smallmouths and four largemouths.
Elimination-round competition concludes Wednesday, with sudden-death set for Thursday and Friday. The championship round, which will consist of eight anglers, will take place Saturday.
Summit Cup competition will begin airing on Outdoor Channel in February 2018. Read more
Ish Monroe has four Bassmaster wins to his credit, two of which required that he surpass the 100-pound mark to earn the victory. He’s also won two FLW Series tournaments on the California Delta, one of the premier big-fish venues in the country.
If a tournament requires big weight to win, you can bet that Monroe will be in the running. It’s not luck.
He believes that the phrase “swinging for the fences,” is one of the greatest myths in bass fishing – more akin to swinging at any old pitch you get than taking a strategic approach to tournament success. Nevertheless, he’s certain that there’s a science to putting yourself in position to win.
Unless he’s on the Great Lakes, you can be pretty sure there won’t be a spinning rod on his deck, or perhaps even his rod locker. When he's in the hunt for a victory, he’s typically using heavy rods, heavy line and certain kinds of baits in the heaviest cover he can find.
One go-to strategy he employs is what he calls “dropping bombs.” That involves taking a 1- or 1 1/2-unce tungsten weight, a Missile Baits D Bomb, a snelled straight-shank flipping hook and often a punch skirt, too. When others are looking for 30 or 40 bites on a soft stickbait, he’s often content with six or seven of the right bites from the heart of the cover. He said that on most popular tournament venues people “are fishing every day of the week,” so the easy bites get picked off. He’s learned to punch through grass, bushes and trash mats to find the fish that others overlook. “If it’s that hard to make that cast, it’s worth it to make that cast,” he emphasized. Read more