Fort Worth anglers Parker Smelley and Branden Hollingshead brought 28.06 pounds of bass to the scales to win the second stop of the 2014 Texas Team Trail presented by Cabela’s at Lake Ray Roberts on March 15.
With their victory, the winning anglers took home nearly $2,000 of bonus incentives plus a new, fully rigged Stratos 189 VLO with 150-horsepower Evinrude, valued at $30,000.
With a weather front approaching the anglers took advantage of the increased bite.
“The weather fell right into what we wanted to happen,” said Smelley. “We wanted the front to come in.”
Fishing with jerkbaits, umbrella rigs and crankbaits, the anglers fished in only one location.
“We fished a secondary point and ridge,” said Smelley. “We never left, stayed in one spot all day. We felt good about our weight and figured it would take thirty pounds to win.”
In their second year fishing the TXTT, second-place finishers Chad Walkoviak and Russell Pasket, both of Anderson, weighed a five-fish limit of 28.04, just four one-hundredths of a pound behind the winners.
During pre-fishing on Friday, the team experienced a slow bite. Unaccustomed to fishing with an umbrella rig, the anglers tied one on and landed a six-pound bass in three casts.
“Neither one of use had thrown one before, but there was a tournament out here a few weeks ago that was won with one,” said Walkoviak. “My partner used an umbrella rig and within the first ten minutes we had a four-pounder. I finally picked one up around noon and as soon as I started throwing it I caught a six-pounder.”
With a good bag of fish the anglers still had a small bass to replace before heading back to the weigh-in.
“Right at the end of the day we still had a two-pounder we needed to cull,” said Walkoviak. “In the last ten minutes I caught a 7.81-pound bass. After that, we were pretty much done.”
The anglers won a total of $5,425 and plan on fishing the remaining two TXTT events and the championship at Toledo Bend.
“I like competition in general,” said Walkoviak. “I’ve been fishing tournaments since I was 14 or 15. The Texas Team Trail’s competition is pretty stout. It’s a lot different than fishing our home lake against the same people. We’re looking forward to the rest of the season.”
Rob Burns and Mike Burns took home the $3,255 third-place price and added $1,452 in Angler’s Advantage cash. T.J. Goodwyn and Phillip Crelia won the $1,085 Big Bass award for their 10.65-pound lunker.
The next stop for the Texas Team Trail is Lake Texoma on April 12. Competitors who register for the Lake Texoma event by midnight of Thursday, April 10, will be allowed to pre-fish on Friday, April 11, and entered into a drawing for a free Power-Pole shallow water anchor. All participants who register online will also be entered into a drawing for a Cabela’s $100 gift card.
For full results, click here.