> Day 4: 5, 8-05 (20, 40-00) If this week taught Monroe anything, it’ll serve as a reference point for future tournaments in which he’s struggling to catch keepers. While he never did uncover any kicker-quality fish, his consistency earned him his best finish since winning at Lake Okeechobee a year ago.

“Consistency and catch limits every day,” he said. “That’s what I’m going think about every time when I’m struggling and I’ll think about one of the hardest places I’ve ever fished a tournament.

“I never got a big bite all week, but there was a load of fish where I was at. There’s something to be said in a tournament when you can find a load of fish and never see a single boat in your area. It was amazing. I kept waiting and waiting to see someone and I never did.”

He went through 25 fish today and had better success fishing a frog under the cloudy skies than had he earlier in the event.

“I have not had a start to a season like this in a long time and the last time I did, I easily cakewalked into the Classic,” he said. “I really want to be at the Guntersville Classic. The business has changed and it’s all about winning tournaments and making Classics. The promotion side of it is one thing, but it’s back to winning tournaments and winning Classics. If you go a couple years without a win, the sponsors start to doubt you. If you go a couple of years without making the Classic, the sponsors start the doubt you.” Read More