April 17th, Durant, OK – The XFL-Extreme Fishing League presented by Skeeter Boats hosted its second event of the season on Lake Texoma. For the second straight tournament the anglers had to deal with difficult weather conditions. The first event was plagued with high winds. This event had several fun elements to deal with: wind, torrential rains, flash floods and lightning. The only thing that was missing was tornadoes. Thankfully the twisters never materialized.
Pre-tournament reports indicated the bite being tough for some and good for others. Early reports showed fish to be in various stages of the spawn and lots to bass being caught on weighted and un-weighted senkos, spinnerbaits and jigs. For several years Texoma suffered through a record drought and was over 10′ below normal. This allowed a lot of weeds and bushes to grow between the low water level and the normal pool bank line. The lake had since returned to normal levels thereby flooding all the vegetation creating lots of cover for the bass. Another variable was the shad spawn. Many anglers reported seeing shad right on the banks spawning with bass periodically feeding on them.
120 teams entered this event and fishing was very tough for most as evidenced by 62 teams not weighing a fish. 24 five fish limits were brought to the scales with the average fish weighing a very healthy 2.91 lbs. The team of Earl Clinton and Cole Adair of Stillwell, OK. bested the field with a 22.15lb limit. Earl and Cole took home the $20,000.00 first place check for their impressive stringer. 2nd place went to yours truly, Capt. Rob Wadley and Vance Montgomery with a 5 fish limit weighing 18.64lbs worth $10,000.00 Capt. Rob and Vance also took home the Skeeter Customer Appreciation Bonus check of $5,000.00 for being the highest finisher competing out of a qualifying Skeeter Boat. Big Bass of the event of 6.88 lbs worth $1,000.00 was weighed in by the team of Cory Johnson and Kyle Winnett. $24,000 was collected in entry fees and $43,010 was paid out yielding a 179% payback. I caught up with Earl Clinton during the weigh-in and he provided some insight as to how they figured out the tough bite.
Earl and Cole pre-fished Thursday thru Saturday prior to this tournament. Their pre-fishing was very good in that they were catching 17lbs+ stringers each day. They concentrated on the back end of spawning creeks in the area around the railroad bridge that lies north of the dam. Things started out very slow for them on tournament day. They started in the back end of their best creek only to discover their fish had moved. After the first couple of hours yielded no keeper fish from these areas they moved towards the mouth of this same creek and concentrated on the points. This proved to be the key adjustment as they started catching quality fish. For some reason (perhaps it was the weather) their fish had relocated to these areas and the anglers were able to catch them by slowly dragging a Texas rigged Zoom Super Speed Craw along the bottom. All of their fish came from two points with the fish holding in 4-9′ of water. When I asked Cole for any sponsors they wanted to mention the only one he said was “My Wife”. Congratulations to Earl and Cole on their hard-earned win.
The next event will be held on Grand Lake on May 22nd. The host ramp will either be Martins Landing or Wolf Creek. Provided the City of Grove does as they have indicated and completes the covered weigh-in facility at Wolf Creek the event will be held there. Otherwise, it will likely be held at Martins Landing. Please check the XFL website for updates as we get closer to May 22nd.
On behalf of the XFL staff I would like to thank all the sponsors and the anglers who participate in each and every event.
See you on the water!