Cliff Crochet finished out his first Bassmaster Classic today, and he said he had mixed feelings about his performance.
“Right now, at this moment, I’m disappointed,” Crochet said on the drive from the lake to the weigh-in. “But tomorrow, probably tonight, I’ll sit back and there’s no way I can be disappointed.
“I just caught three limits in my first Classic: What’s there to be disappointed about?”
He landed about 8 ½ pounds today (he had yet to weigh in when this story was written), and caught about 15 fish during the day’s fishing. The unofficial BassTrakk shows him as being the most-prolific angler of the day again with 11 keeper fish boated.
However, he said he just never found a big bite.
“I went to my jerk bait fish this morning, and I caught four keepers, with two of them being really small,” Crochet said. “So I left about 9 a.m.”
He ran from mid lake to the lower end, where he has been catching fish on wacky worm all week.
“The most-important thing was to fill my limit,” he said. “I finished out my limit and culled up one time.”
By 9:30 a.m., Crochet decided to shelve the wacky worms and jerk baits and look for a bigger bite.
“I didn’t think I could increase my weight by pounds doing what I was doing,” he said. “I just didn’t feel like there were any big fish in there.”
So he began throwing a lipless crank bait and flipping.
“It just wasn’t there,” Crochet said.
The day ended with an estimated three-day weight of 28-13, but he said the experience prepares him well for the upcoming Elite Series.
“It gives me confidence that I can compete,” Crochet said.
He said it also provided the opportunity to move past any jitters about fishing with the top pros.
“This week I got a chance to meet a lot of fishermen, and they were real nice,” Crochet said. “I don’t think I was intimidated, but if there was any intimidation I’m past it.”
Be sure and check back for the final story on the weigh-in to see who wins and how Crochet official finishes.
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