Sonoma County belly Boat Bass Club Member Pat Wilson Leads Forrest Wood Cup!
Fickle bite on Lake Murray yields tightly packed leaderboard heading into second day of competitionBy Gary Mortenson - 14.Aug.2008
COLUMBIA, S.C. – As expected, Lake Murray proved to be a tough first date for the entire co-angler field during the opening round of competition at the 2008 Forrest Wood Cup.
With difficult summer fishing conditions abound, coupled with a dramatic shift in the weather over the past 24 hours, co-anglers were left scrambling to find whatever bites they could. In fact, when all was said and done, only eight co-anglers in the field of 77 managed to land five keeper bass. However, by the time weigh-in had concluded, a few co-anglers did manage to break through the Lake Murray morass.“It was pretty brutal out there,” said Pat Wilson, who ended day one atop the leaderboard with a yeoman-like catch weighing in at 8 pounds, 14 ounces. “So I feel pretty blessed right now. I wound up catching eight keepers total and I had a limit in the boat by 12:30 p.m. My first fish was a 3-pounder and that really helped. Overall, I feel pretty good right now.
”To be sure, Wilson has plenty of experience fishing pressure-packed tournaments. With three Wal-Mart BFL titles, a 2005 FLW Tour co-angler title on the Potomac River and a 2007 Wal-Mart FLW Series co-angler title at the California Delta already under his belt, Wilson knows what it takes to win.“I went pre-fishing with (pro) Jimmy Reese the first two days and that really helped me figure out what the fish were doing,” said Wilson, who boasts 14 top-10 finishes in his FLW Outdoors career since his rookie season in 2000. “My goal was to get three keeper bites today. I figured that if I got anything more than that it would be a bonus. Today, everything just worked out. I had a great partner in David Fritts and he put me on fish. And that’s all you can ask for.”Wilson said he fished in anywhere from 10 to 25 feet of water using soft plastics, targeting bass on a variety of flats and breaks.“I’m going to do the same thing tomorrow,” said Wilson, a native of Penngrove, Calif. “The good thing is that I can use this (pattern) pretty much anywhere on the lake.”While he’s excited to be in the lead, Wilson said he’s just taking the tournament one day at a time.“Right now, I’m just trying to make the top 10,” said Wilson. “This is a great field. We have the best co-anglers in the country. But I think if I can make the top 10, I’ll be in pretty good shape. But like every tournament, you have to get a little lucky. So I’m just going to go out there tomorrow, fish hard and see where the chips fall.”