GROVE, Okla. – Pro Kyle Weisenburger of Ottawa, Ohio, caught a five-bass limit weighing 24 pounds, 12 ounces to take the lead on the opening day of the FLW Tour at the Grand Lake presented by Mercury Marine. Pros Todd Castledine of Nacogdoches, Texas (20-2), and Miles Burghoff of Hixson, Tennessee (19-12), are the closest anglers to Weisenburger in second and third place as the four-day tournament, which features 165 of the world’s best bass-fishing professionals casting for a top award of up to $125,000, heads into Day Two.
The weather in northeastern Oklahoma, although overcast, was nice Thursday, although many tournament anglers experienced a Grand Lake that was much more finicky than normal – likely due to fluctuating water levels. The bass are scattered and it’s left many competitors scratching their heads as they try to figure out the puzzle. Weisenburger found his the majority of his big limit in a single pocket, although he was also able to run around his creek arm and replicate his pattern on a couple other spots.
“I had a couple of good little stretches and caught 12 or 13 fish today, which is quadruple anything that I had done in practice,” said Weisenburger, who is fishing in his third season as a pro on the FLW Tour. “I think it was more area-oriented – when I got the stuff I was looking for, I got a couple of bites.
“I caught fish on two different baits,” Weisenburger continued. “I had three rods on my deck, but threw primarily just two baits and when I got in the right area they would really eat one of them. The conditions let me know which one I was going to throw. I checked the forecast and I believe it will be similar tomorrow, which is good because it really set up right for me today.
Weisenburger declined to divulge the specifics on his lures and pattern at this point of the tournament, but did hint that the water he was fishing was a bit dirtier than most.
“I caught one or two more keepers there that didn’t help me, so I decided I was going to ease off of them,” Weisenburger said. “I ended up leaving my primary area and I figured out a little bit of a pattern.
“It was a good day, but it’s only Day One,” Weisenburger went on to say. “I’m going to start in my primary area tomorrow and see where it takes me. Hopefully they’re still there and I will get to fish into the weekend.”