By John Johnson
BassFan Senior Editor

(Editor's note: This is the conclusion of a 2-part story in which tour-level pros recount the most memorable fish they did battle with during the 2017 season. To read part 1, click here.)

Matt Arey
FLW Tour

"I finished 14th at the Forrest Wood Cup and I lost two fish the first day that kept me out of the top 10. One was right around 5 pounds and the other was 3 1/2 to 4.

"I had the 5-pounder all the way to the boat after it had done three big tail-walks and a couple of gigantic jumps. That fish was done and for some reason the hooks just popped loose after it had all but given up.

"I didn't do anything wrong – that's just topwater fishing. It looked like it had the bait pretty good."

Brent Ehrler
Bassmaster Elite Series

"Fishing was tough on day 1 of the Bassmaster Classic and I didn't know what to expect. I really had no idea what I'd found in practice and it was windy that morning and my confidence wasn't really very high. Then my second bite was a 9-pounder that ended up being the big fish of the tournament.

"I caught it flipping in a foot of water, which hadn't produced anything big for me all week. It came up mouth-first like the big ones do and then I had to pull it over the top of the limb. By all rights, I shouldn't have caught that fish.

Photo: BassFan

Brent Ehrler wasn't real confident when the 2017 Bassmaster Classic got under way, but his second bite changed everything.

"Two minutes after that I caught a 5-pounder and I said, 'Oh geez, I guess I'm in the right area.'''

Greg Bohannan
FLW Tour

"It was at the last (FLW Series) at Lake of the Ozarks and I was in contention for the Angler of the Year. I started day 2 kind of slow – I only had a couple of fish and my buzzbait bite had quit. I moved to some deeper docks where I'd been catching just keeper spots off the ends of them on a Skirmish 1.5 crankbait.

"I caught a 5-02 off the end of one of those docks. For that time of year and where we were at, it was a giant. After that I knew I'd make the cut and I went on to win the AOY, so it was all good."

Josh Bertrand
Bassmaster Elite Series

"I had a pretty good day on the first day at Dardanelle – I had a good pattern and two good areas. I caught 14 1/2 pounds and I was in 20th place and I felt real good going into the second day, but then I go out and I can't get a bite. Everything I'd thought was really solid had gone away and it was becoming a nightmare day. I had no fish at 3:20 and check-in was at 3:40.

"I went to some brush piles that I'd graphed by never got bit on and started throwing a shaky-head, and I caught a 5 1/2-pounder just a few minutes before weigh-in. I ended up 63rd, so I didn't get a check, but if you took those 5 1/2 pounds off my weight, I would've been in about 100th and I might not have made the Classic, or it would've been very close.

"That fish was a gift and I really had no business catching it. I was clueless and just running around like an idiot. It was just a lucky fish."

Jay Brainard
Bassmaster Elite Series

"I was sight-fishing at Okeechobee and I found a big one that I hooked two or three times, but it came off. I was throwing a Strike King Rage Bug and it would eat it, but it wouldn't get the hook. Finally I tried a little Fat Baby Finesse and I saw its gills flare and it showed every sign that it had the bait in its mouth. I set the hook and it took off.

"It went under my boat and through my Power-Poles and under some docks. I was thinking it was a double-digit fish and I had to have it and pretty much everything that could go wrong did, but it didn't come off. I finally got it out from under the docks and out of the poles, and it was foul-hooked. I had to throw it back.

"That's the first time that had ever happened to me. It was a heart-breaker."

Casey Scanlon
FLW Tour

"It'd be one in Florida at the Harris Chain. I'd had a couple of good tournaments to that point and I've always been a hit-or-miss guy in Florida – fishing grass isn't my favorite.

Photo: FLW

A late-day stop at the Harris Chain paid off handsomely for Casey Scanlon.

"I had a decent bag and I was coming back to the weigh-in and I stopped at another lake. I casted to a spot with a 10-inch Luck-E-Strike Dead Ringer and caught like a 7-pounder, and that bumped me up into the Top 20.

"That was the first day and I ended up catching a big fish off that spot every day."

Luke Clausen
Bassmaster Elite Series

"The first event at Cherokee I caught one fish in two day. It was the worst tournament I've ever had. Only catching that one fish was a turning point for me – I knew I had to pull my head out of you know where if I was going to make it back to the Classic."

Edwin Evers
Bassmaster Elite Series

"One giant fish at the Classic – it was 7 or 8 pounds, if not bigger, and she had a couple of 2 1/2-pound males with her. I got her to bite a couple of times, but she never got the bait fully in her mouth I spent a long time on her – close to 2 hours.

"Knowing I just needed 17 pounds or whatever, I knew if I caught that fish my day would be completely different. I wish I'd never seen her because then I could have gone on and fished the rest of my stuff."

Clifford Pirch
Bassmaster Elite Series

"I was throwing a frog late on day 2 at Ross Barnett. I had a limit, but it wasn't real big. Then I caught a 5-pounder and made the cut in the very last spot. That one was worth a check and some points and it got me to the next day. It was a super-exciting fish.

"I'd missed out on some morning fish that day and all I had were little post-spawn males. I finally got that good in the afternoon."