Caleb Sumrall and Jamie Arceneaux plucked more than 20 ½ pounds out of Lake Dauterive yesterday to take the first-day lead of the Louisiana Sportsman Open Bass Championship, and they returned there today to seal the victory and collect the $12,000 first-place prize.
“We did exactly the same thing (as we did yesterday),” Sumrall said. “We were flipping shallow banks.”
Every fish in the team’s two-day total of 36.39 pounds was caught in water that was from 3 inches to a foot deep, the New Iberia angler said.
The team also boated the day’s biggest bass — a 5.82-pounder worth an extra $2,000.
Willie Couch Jr. and Willie Couch III finished in second place with 32.75 pounds, Kelly Wheat and Lewitt Hamilton clinched third with 31.64 pounds, and last year’s winners Andre F. Cazelot and Brooke Morrison wrapped up the event in fourth with a two-day total of 30.46 pounds. Fifth place was claimed by Brett Sellers and Jason Pouciau with 28.28
Sumrall said they tried to catch fish on vibrating jigs and spinnerbaits, but were forced to stick to Missile Baits D Bombs.
“We didn’t get one reaction bite all weekend,” he said.
The team went into the second day hoping the front pushing through wouldn’t impact their waters, but they faced changed water visibility and tougher fishing when they shut down after the run this morning to Lake Dauterive.
“The water muddied up over night,” Sumrall said. “I think that’s why we caught fewer fish today.”
Visibility was limited to about 4 inches, and they only caught eight fish all day.
“We culled three times,” Sumrall said.
The key was that bass were on the banks for the spawn, and Sumrall said they were pitching to fish revealing their locations by creating wakes.
“The fish were showing themselves,” he said.
While Sumrall hooked the day’s lunker immediately after seeing it move, most of their bass weren’t that willing to bite.
“They were very spooky,” he explained. “You had to remember where the fish were, give them a break and then come back to them.”
After marking bed locations, the anglers would ease back later and pitch green pumpkin/blue flake D Bombs under ¼-, ½- and ¾-ounce weights to the fish.
Willie Couch Jr. said he and his son ran to Bayou Black to fish Lake Penchant to take the second-place finish.
Their key was working Humdinger spinnerbaits along the banks, a tactic that yielded about 25 fish yesterday and 12 to 15 fish today.
The Top 25 teams and their weights were:
1. Caleb Sumrall/Jamie Arceneaux — 36.39
2. Willie Couch Jr./Willie Couch III — 32.75
3. Kelly Wheat/Lewitt Hamilton — 31.64
4. Andre F. Cazelot/Brooke Morrison — 30.46
5. Brett Sellers/Jason Pourciau — 28.28
6. Kyle Bush/Ted Mayon Jr. — 28.04
7. Bruce Shockley/Michael Levert — 27.99
8. Anthony Bonadona/Raymond Louque — 27.31
9. Trevor Jeansonne/Dwain Chaney — 27.29
10. Josh Son/Ronnie Eschete — 27.12
11. Randy Durand/Errol Sique — 26.85
12. Steve Guillot/Chad Port — 26.54
13. Joey Zimmer/Joey Louque — 26.48
14. Ivy St. Romain/Casey St. Romain — 25.74
15. David Cavell/Corey Wheat — 25.70
16. Robbie Poche/Luke LeBlanc — 24.68
17. Marvin Allemon/Aaron Berrett — 24.67
18. Jeff McMorris/Beau Fitch — 24.39
19. Gerald Spohrer/Ryan Lavign — 23.7
20. Brooks Webre/Cory champagne — 23.21
21. Greg M. LeJeune/William Holley — 23.23
22. Darrel Gautreau/Shelby “Doty” Gautreau — 23.12
23. Jim Gaspard/Hayden Pinell — 20.51
24. Jamie Carnley/Blaine Domingue — 20.23
25. Brady C. Piper/B. Scott Verbois — 16.05