Winds sweeping across the Oklahoma plains couldn’t stop Brandon Pedigo during the Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Weekend Series, operated by American Bass Anglers, Oklahoma Division 14 tournament, held June 12, 2010, on Lake Fort Gibson.
Launching out of Taylor Ferry North Ramp, the 25-year-old angler from Perkins found some schooling fish on the 19,990-acre lake near Wagoner. He landed five keepers weighing 19.24 pounds to win the Boater Division. He caught about 25 bass with the biggest hitting 4.77 pounds.
“In practice, I stumbled upon a spot,” Pedigo explained. “The fish were schooling a lot. When the schools came up, we could catch fish pretty quickly. I caught all of my fish on an Arkie football head jig. On the back, I used a Chigger Craw, a Zoom Super Chunk or a Zoom Speed Craw. The faster I moved it, the more fish bit and the bigger the fish were.”
A dead-bass penalty kept Frank Clymer of Muskogee out of the winner circle. He landed five bass weighing 19.43 pounds, but the penalty put him back to 18.93 pounds. One of his bass weighed 4.23 pounds.
“I don’t know why that fish died, but it cost me first place,” Clymer lamented. “I covered a lot of water in the past week. Mostly, I fished a jig around deep brush piles.”
Walter Andries of Coweta finished third among the 75 boaters. He landed a five-bass tournament limit weighing 18.07 pounds with a 5.07-pound kicker.
“I knew the fish were ganging up because they were drawing water out of the lake,” Andries said. “I caught my fish on a Super Spook on a rock flat early in the morning. I had my limit by 7 a.m. When it got hot, I fished offshore gravel bars and humps with a Zoom brush hog. Most of the bass were pretty far off the bank.”
Brett Brumnett of Wagoner finished fourth with five bass going 17.76 pounds, followed by Thomas Canady of Skiatook with a five-bass bag for 17.47 pounds. He anchored it with a 5.11-pounder, but Jamie Narramore of Lavaca, Ark., took lunker honors with a 5.55-pounder.
For the Co-Angler Division, Kyle Cortiana of Tulsa won it all in his first ABA BWS event. He landed three bass for 13.74 pounds with a 5.49-pound kicker that took division lunker honors. He used a peanut butter and jelly jig and a watermelon redflake craw trailer.
“The wind was strong, but the bass were where the wind was blowing hardest,” Cortiana said. “The fish were mostly on chunk rock off the banks. We stayed away from all the people beating the banks out of the wind. The fish really wanted the bait moving. The faster we could move the jig, the faster the fish bit. They were that aggressive.”
Derek Thurman of Collinsville placed second among the non-boaters. He landed a three-bass division limit weighing 12.35 pounds with one 4.81-pounder. Dustin Wrona of Tulsa finished third with three bass for 11.52 with one 4.13-pounder. George Baker, III of Tulsa took fourth with three bass going 11.16 pounds with a 4.57-pound kicker, followed by Ronnie Rutledge of Oakhurst with three bass and 10.94 pounds.
About American Bass Anglers: The Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Weekend Series provides weekend anglers a professionally operated competitive tour with a path the world championship of bass fishing the Bassmaster Classic. American Bass Anglers commitment is to provide low cost, close to home tournaments for the weekend angler and at the same time offer each competitor an upward path for individual angler progression. For more information about American Bass Anglers and the American Fishing Tour, The Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Weekend Series, The American 150 Series or the American Couples Series, visit www.americanbassanglers.com.