"In the Boat" presented by Jewel Bait Company
Tournament: Mr. Bass of Arkansas
February 15th, 2009
Lake Ouachita

Angler: Frank Leone (Boater)
Place: 55th - 5 bass - 9.70 pounds

Had 1 day of practice before the tournament. I decided to focus on areas of the lake that
I knew. Started off at 27 bridge. The water was near chocolate milk, but still fishable. I started
throwing a Jackall Muscle 7+ crankbait on the rocks close to the launch. About the third cast, I
hooked up with a short largemouth. I continued down the bank and had 3 keeper spotted bass in
about 30 minutes. They were eating that Jackall Crank!!! I scoped about a few places up the river,
and I checked my favorite channel swing a few miles down from 27 Bridge. Within a couple of
minutes, I had another keeper spotted bass, this one hit a Jackall Squad Minnow 115. So I'm
thinking "up the river" may be the place to start. Loaded up around 10:00 AM and headed to the
South Fork. Picked up a couple of nice keeper spotted bass (One on a Jewel Jig and one on a
Jackall Muscle 10+), but the bites were few and far between. About 3:00 PM I noticed the wind was
hitting a nice channel swing bank, so I decided to check it with the Squad Minnow. The fish were on
fire!!! All you had to do was chuck it towards the bank, twitch once or twice and bang there was a
fish. Unfortunately, they were on the small side. At this point I had found two groups of fish, both
were on the small side, but I was still torn as to which group to start with. After consulting my fishing
partner, Jeremy Risley, I decided that I would start in the South Fork......

Tournament: Another great morning for fishing. As we headed out from Crystal there was a nice
breeze blowing and I knew the fish would be chompin' out on the big pond. I got to my area and
started chucking away. They were on the Squad Minnow and I had 3 largemouth in the first 30
minutes on the first pass. I had them pinpointed to a small area and let them rest awhile. Started
chucking crankbaits and throwing a jig around several productive areas I had found in the past.
Nothing - No takers. So back to the channel swing. Caught 2 more keeper largemouth on the next
pass and decided to try a Jewel jig down the same stretch of bank. I'm in some kind of jig funk or
something and I couldn't get them to bite (it's been a problem all winter). At this point I had about 9
or 9.5 pounds, so I decided to leave the South Fork and try to find some rattletrap fish. Big mistake.
I still hadn't figured the trap bite out on Ouachita and today was no exception. After a couple of
fruitless hours, I headed to a creek that my co-angler Eric liked. No takers there either. On our way
back in I stopped at a channel swing bank in Crystal and was able to cull once, but it was too little
too late.....

Keeper Count: Jackall Squad Minnow 115 (Chartreuse Shad): 7 keepers

Final Thoughts:
I just didn't have the firepower to compete in this slug fest. It's frustrating not
being able to string 2 or 3 decent bites together when the fish were eating like they were. I should
have either stayed in the South Fork or went up the river. Time to regroup and get ready for the
next one......