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Monroe came into the event at 50th in the AOY race (points). Those who finish the season 28th or better in the points receive a Bassmaster Classic berth, although that number will drop to at least 30th, and perhaps well beyond, due to double-qualifications.

So Monroe's primary goal this week was a Top 25, which would put him into the Classic range, and perhaps provide a chance at a Top 12. He's well on his way to both of those, courtesy of his Snag Proof Ish's Phat Frog and a flip-bait.

He lost a big one at boatside, and could never shake a 13-inch spotted bass.

"It was a fun day, except for that one I lost," Monroe told BassFan. "I'm very happy with it. I'll take 12 pounds tomorrow and be completely happy. If you look at the weights, 50th place is 6 1/2 pounds. That tells you how tough it is. There are a lot of great fishermen who are struggling. Complete Story

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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — For the second time of the Bassmaster Elite Series season, bass fishing legend Denny Brauer of Camdenton, Mo., took the lead on the first day.

And on what was arguably the toughest first day of any event in the 2011 Elite season, Brauer’s 14 pounds, 10 ounces of Arkansas River bass was just enough to command the top spot in the Diamond Drive on Thursday. He was 2 ounces ahead of Ish Monroe of Hughson, Calif., in second place with 14-8, and more than a pound in front of Keith Poche of Troy, Ala., third with 13-8. Complete Story

Go on the water with Ish Monroe. Click Here
B.A.S.S. / Seigo Saito
LAGRANGE, Ga. — Securing his second Bassmaster Elite Series top-12 cut in a row, and this time with the lead, Ish Monroe was a happy man Saturday. He has, in fact, been feeling great about his fishing in general

“I’m going out there fishing, and having fun, there’s nothing special about what I’m doing,” Monroe said. “I don’t get mad. I don’t get frustrated. I’m chattin’ it up with the crowd back there near me, and enjoying the day. That’s what it’s all about.” Read more

MANY, La. -- Ish Monroe has had a horrible start to his season. He has finished 70th, 48th, and 89th in the first three Elite Series events. And Toledo Bend wasn't looking much better as the California native weighed-in only 11-13 on Day One, placing him close to the bottom of the standings. Complete Story