Former Bassmaster Elite Series pro Randy Allen grabbed the lead on day 1 of the Lake Amistad Bassmaster Central Open by catching an 18-pound stringer that included a 10-01 kicker. He'll take a lead of more than 2 1/2 pounds into day 2.
“I knew that we could catch a big fish, but it is just luck of the draw on those big ones,” he said. “I knew that I was around some fish. I just had to keep throwing and hope for the best.”
As expected, the weather was cold (iced-up rod guides were an issue early in the day) and the overall bite was slow. Forty-three of the 166 competitors zeroed, and the goose-egg crowd included Rick Clunn, Brent Chapman and Kevin Short.
Everything worked out well for Allen, despite 2 days of practice in which he never got a bite. Through previous scouting trips, he'd mapped out a series of stops where he believed he would find bass.
“Today was just going on a milk run where I knew these fish were and trying to catch them. It was a nightmare trying to figure them out. It was just one here and one there. I would catch a couple and then not catch anything for an hour and half. Then I would catch two or three. I just had to hit 10 or 12 spots to get my limit.”
Fellow Louisiana angler Brent Bonadona also got off to a slow start but recovered to catch four keepers weighing 15-06 to move into second place. After fishing shallow until about noon and not catching a bass, he decided to work a jig 35 feet deep, and that paid off.
Here are the numbers for the initial Top 12:
1. Randy Allen: 18-00
2. Brent Bonadona: 15-06
3. Chris M. Jones: 15-04
4. Cody Greaney: 15-03
5. Troy Broussard: 12-13
6. James Stricklin: 12-10
7. Andy Young: 12-01
8. Aaron Johnson: 11-13
9. (tie) Josh Douglas: 11-12
9. (tie) Edwin Evers: 11-12
11. Jordan Lee: 11-10
12. Ken Iyobe: 11-01