McDonald Wins at Bob Sandlin
Brandon McDonald of Longview, Texas won the American Bass Anglers Ram Truck Open Series East Texas tournament, held June 11th on Lake Bob Sandlin.
Running out of the Titus County boat ramp near Mt Pleasant, Texas, Brandon caught five bass weighing 16.53 pounds. Brandon anchored his bag with a 6.16 pound kicker. “I spent all day shallow,” McDonald said. “I was flipping a jig to the grass, no timber or any other structure, just grass. I did catch a few fish early using a yellow magic but caught 11 keepers today and culled up to my limit. I was fortunate to have bites all day too, it just took some time to get there.” For the Boater division victory, McDonald took home a check for $5,000. Brandon also caught the Big Bass for the Boaters side weighing 6.16 pounds. He pocketed an additional $500.
In second for the Boaters, Keith Jones of Texarkana, Texas landed a five-bass tournament limit weighing 15.77 pounds. “Today didn’t start so good, I got to the other side of the bridge when we took off this morning and my hat blew out of the boat. I owe a big thanks to my buddy Jerry for letting me borrow one for the day. I caught my first three fish throwing a frog in the grass and the bite slowed, so we went out deep and I was able to finish out my limit and cull 3 or 4 times.” said Jones. He collected $1,158 for the effort.
Allan Smith of Gun Barrell City, Texas took third for the Boaters with five bass weighing 14.69 pounds. “I had a terrible practice. I came down here last Sunday and only managed to catch one keeper so, knowing what I tried didn’t work, I had to change things up. I had a few bites yesterday but didn’t check any of them. That didn’t pan out today either so I picked up a shaky head, beat the grass with it, and started catching fish.” Smith said. He earn $772 for his efforts.
Finishing fourth, Todd Castledine of Nacogdoches, Texas landed a five-bass limit weighing 13.89 pounds.
Brian Gambill of Sachse, Texas rounded out the top five Boaters with five bass weighing 13.70 pounds.
In the Co-Angler division, Jared Gilbert of Grand Prairie, Texas won with three bass weighing 9.71 pounds. He sealed his victory with a 6.15 pound kicker. “All three of my fish were caught on a crank bait. We stayed deep and they came from 14-20 feet of water on ledges. I caught the big one around 9:30am this morning so that took a little pressure off. I only had the three bites today so I feel pretty fortunate and love the way it turned out.” Gilbert said. He pocketed a check for $1,470 for his efforts.
Taking second for the Co-Anglers, Andy Wilburn of Royse City, Texas brought in a three-bass division limit weighing 9.22 pounds including a 4.71-pound kicker. “We caught a lot of fish today. A lot of fish. We were in the shallow grass too throwing a frog and a fluke. The bites stayed pretty consistent all day so it made the heat bearable. I was able to cull to the limit I weighed and had a really good time.” Andy said. He collected $504 for the effort.
Scott Gordon of Brownsboro, Texas placed third among the Co-Anglers with three bass weighing 8.52 pounds. He also anchored his catch with a 4.71-pound kicker to earn $336. “It was a slow hot day for us. I only managed to catch three and my last fish came 5 minutes before we had to run to weigh-in. It turns out that was the one that got me here. I caught all my fish on a deep diving crank bait too. All said and done, it was a good day.” Gordon said.
In fourth place among the Co-Anglers, Roddy Bieber of Rockwall, Texas brought in three bass weighing 7.82 pounds anchored by a beautiful fish weighing 5.38 pounds.
Scott Simpson capped off the top five Co-Anglers with three bass weighing 7.04 pounds.
The biggest bass for the Co-Anglers was caught by the Co-Angler winner Jared Gilbert weighing 6.15 pounds which was .01 ounce shy of the Big Bass for the tournament. Jared pocketed $195 for his fish.
Slated for July 30th, the next divisional tournament will be held on Lake Palestine out of The Villages Marina near Tyler, Texas. At the end of the season, the best anglers from across the nation advance the 2017 Ray Scott Championship, slated for Old Hickory Lake in Hendersonville, TN in April of 2017.
For more information on this tournament, call Chris Wayand, tournament manager, at (256)230-5627 or ABA at (256)232-0406. On line, see www.ramopenseries.com.
About American Bass Anglers: American Bass Anglers is committed to providing 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, the Ram Truck Open Series, the American Fishing Tour or the American Couples Series, visit www.americanbassanglers.com.