When Pierre Part’s Cliff Crochet struggled to log a 51st place spot in the first day of the 2014 Bassmaster Classic, he said he was going to go out today and have fun.
He accomplished that feat — and weighed in five bass worth 23 pounds, 15 ounces that pushed him WAY up in the rankings. However, his Classic still ended because he just missed the Top 25 cut.
“I’m a little excited,” Crochet said on the weigh-in stand. “I had a rough day yesterday, but the curse was off today; I just kind of let roll today — shot from the hip.”
The smile was still on his face when he walked into the press room.
“I started in a place that was 50/50,” he said. “Today it worked.”
He said his first fish came minutes after he was released from the boat launch.
“I caught one while they were still calling boat numbers,” he said. “Seriously; I could hear them.”
That was one of his chunks from the day, and it fell for a jerk bait.
But he didn’t stay in that area long.
“I couldn’t get nothing going,” he said. “I went to an area I fished yesterday, and I missed on on a (Rat-L-)Trap. Then I caught one on a ChatterBait.”
He then started running around the lake fishing different areas.
“I caught my third fish at 11 (a.m.),” Crochet said. “I pulled up on a Rat-L-Trap spot and missed a keeper. I was like, ‘OK, here we go.’”
After returning to the original spot, the angler known as “Cajun Baby” on the Bassmaster Elite Series tour headed to a spot that was unfishable yesterday after severe storms muddied much of the reservoir.
“I headed to some water that I went to yesterday that was pure red,” Crocet said. “On practice Wednesday, I had two bites in 50 feet. Today the water came up and cleared up.”
It didn’t take long for him to take advantage of the condition change.
“About my fifth cast I picked up that big one,” Crochet said. “That gave me four (bass).
“About six minutes later I caught that next big one.”
That sealed his limit.
You can watch him catch one of his keepers on the attached video.
Crochet said the water in that final area would be hit tomorrow if he makes the cut.
“I think that area cleared up today and I really didn’t know how good it was until today,” he said. “Now it’s that good (Atchafalaya) Basin water.”
And his success came much like he would in the Basin.
“I’m catching them on the bank — a bare bank,” Crochet said.
Hs first fish came on a Luck-E-Strike jerk bait, while the other four came on a vibrating jig.