Cox Maintains Lead on Sam Rayburn Reservoir
Jan 25th, 2020 by Keith Worrall
Modified Jan 26th, 2020 at 11:12 AM
January 25, 2020
What was looking like a blowout has turned into a nail-biter.
For two days, the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit event on Sam Rayburn was all about John Cox and his little one-cast crankbait spot, which had given him more than a 5-pound lead. And another big day from that honey hole with his Berkley Frittside crankbait might’ve made it near impossible for anyone to catch him.
Instead, that spot produced one 12-incher and a whole lot of stress for Cox, who had to scramble up until the bitter end today to scrounge up 13 pounds, 3 ounces to barely hang on to his lead with 53-6 over hard-charging Corey Neece and Darold Gleason.
“I am honestly thrilled to catch what I did,” says Cox. “Just looking at past tournaments, I’ve bombed a lot of day threes, and today really felt like that. I pulled up to the magical spot, and everything seemed OK. It wasn’t. It was pretty dead. I tried to stay there, but it just wasn’t happening.”
While Cox’s morning could hardly have gotten off to a worse start, it was the exact opposite for the two anglers right behind him.
Neece was able to get back on his spot that produced more than 20 pounds on day one (he couldn’t get on it yesterday due to other competitors), and he caught a 7-pounder within in the first five minutes and most of his 20-7 bag today by 9 a.m.
Meanwhile, Gleason caught fish on his first, second and fourth casts of the morning, and basically caught fish at will for the first hour or so. The only thing holding him back is the lack of necessary kicker bites.
As for Cox, with his key spot bombing out, he went into full-blown scramble mode.
“I just started running until I saw something I thought looked good,” says Cox, who left his main spot around 9 a.m. “I probably stopped 100 times, and about every 10 times I stopped I’d catch something.”
So what looked good? Anything and everything.
“Laydowns, grass, a point coming out or something that looked really fishy,” says Cox. “I’d just swing in and burn it quick. I just had the trolling motor on 100, and no fish came off the same thing. One came off an isolated stick. One came off a laydown. One came off a rock point. One came off a drain in the back of a pocket.”
Cox said nothing “felt right” today from the start. Though he does believe he finally figured something out with his junk-fishing while working his way back in. Cox was able to make three solid culls in the final hour.
As for tomorrow, Cox knows he’s going to need something more than just his junk-fishing to compete with the solid patterns Neece, Gleason and a few other pros are on. What that will be, though, he’s not sure yet.
“I’m really hoping my little area turns back on,” says Cox. “If it doesn’t, we’ll just go scramble again and see what happens.”
Top 10 pros
1. John Cox – DeBary, Fla. – 53-6 (15)
2. Corey Neece – Bristol, Tenn. – 52-10 (15)
3. Darold Gleason – Many, La. – 50-1 (15)
4. Sam George – Athens, Ala. – 46-3 (15)
5. Tommy Dickerson – Orange, Texas – 45-8 (15)
6. Jonathan Canada – Helena, Ala. – 45-8 (15)
7. Kerry Milner – Bono, Ark. – 45-2 (15)
8. Scott Dobson – Clarkston, Mich. – 43-8 (15)
9. Ron Nelson – Berrien Springs, Mich. – 43-7 (15)
10. Alex Davis – Albertville, Ala. – 43-4 (15)
Tags: headline-story 2020-01-23-sam-rayburn-reservoir
Full results for the entire field can be found at FLWFishing.com.
Overall there were 138 bass weighing 354 pounds, 14 ounces, caught by pros Saturday. Of the final 30 pros, 23 of them were able to bring a five-bass limit to the scale.
In Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit competition, the full field of 154 pro anglers competed in the two-day opening round on Thursday and Friday. The top 30 pros based on their two-day accumulated weight advanced to Saturday. Now, only the top 10 pros continue competition Sunday, with the winner determined by the heaviest accumulated weight from the four days of competition.
The Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit at Sam Rayburn Reservoir is hosted by the Jasper County Development District.
The final 10 anglers will take off at 7:30 a.m. CST Sunday from the Umphrey Family Pavilion, located at 5438 Sam Rayburn Parkway, in Brookeland. Sunday’s championship weigh-in will be held at the pavilion, beginning at 4 p.m.
Television coverage of the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit at Sam Rayburn Reservoir will premiere in 2020. The 2020 Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit will have 156 two-hour airings on network television, including 26 consecutive weeks of Friday night primetime airing on Outdoor Channel and 130 airings on Sportsman Channel for a total of 312 hours of Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit programming.
The popular FLW Live on-the-water broadcast will air Sunday, featuring live action from the boats of the tournament’s top pros each day. Host Travis Moran is joined by former FLW pro Todd Hollowell to break down the extended action each day from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. The on-the-water broadcast will be live streamed on FLWFishing.com, the FLW YouTube channel and the FLW Facebook page.
For complete details and updated information visit FLWFishing.com. For regular updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit on FLW’s social media outlets at Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.
FLW is the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, providing anglers of all skill levels the opportunity to compete for millions in prize money across five tournament circuits. Headquartered in Benton, Kentucky, FLW and its partners conduct more than 290 bass-fishing tournaments annually around the world, including the United States, Canada, China, Italy, South Korea, Mexico, Namibia, Portugal, South Africa, Spain, and Zimbabwe.
FLW tournament fishing can be seen on the Emmy-nominated “FLW” television show while Bass Fishing magazine delivers cutting-edge tips from top pros. Acquired by Major League Fishing in late 2019, FLW is expanding its programming in 2020 to the Outdoor Channel and the Sportsman Channel as well as on-demand at MyOutdoorTV (MOTV).
For more information visit FLWFishing.com and follow FLW at Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.