Hackney maintains lead at Dardanelle

Category: Tournament

 May 17th, 2014 by OutdoorsFIRST 

Modified May 17th, 2014 at 12:00 AM

Unseasonably cold air and dropping water temperatures, down to the low 60’s from the 70’s during practice, didn’t seem to negatively impact the Bassmaster Elite Series anglers today on Lake Dardanelle. Plenty of solid limits crossed the weigh-in stage. Phoenix Boats pro Greg Hackney brought in 16 pounds, 10 ounces to maintain his lead with a three-day total of (56-8). Nitro pro Rick Clunn is hot on Hackney’s tail with (55-11).

Rounding out the Top 5 are in third Strike King pro Keith Combs (54-3), fourth Falcon Rods pro Jason Christie (53-1) and in fifth Yamaha pro Cliff Crochet (52-5).

Hackney had plenty
“I’ve had a good week,” said Hackney. “I’m catching a lot of fish. No really good bites today. I am surprised the fishing was as good as it was with another weather change today. They were really biting good.

“Who knows if it is in the cards for me to win this week? I know I’ll go out tomorrow and give it 100 percent.”

Hackney is flipping and pitching a jig.

Rick Clunn heads into Championship Sunday trailing Hackney by less than a pound. (Joel Shangle)

Clunn consistent
“I have to keep catching them consistently every day to be able to win,” said Clunn. “I’ve got to get as many good fish into the boat that I can. I’m not catching many, but I am catching the right ones. I’ll have to do even better tomorrow to be able to win.”

Not easy for Combs
“Dardanelle is fishing extremely well,” said Combs. “It wasn’t easy for me today. Not like the first day when I had 30 or more bites. Today I only had 7 or 8. I’m excited about tomorrow. I hope I catch one of those big Zell Rowland 25-pound limits.”

Christie made a mistake
“I had a good day today,” said Christie. “I want to have one of those magical days tomorrow. The goal is to get to Sunday because you can’t win if you are not fishing then.

“I did make a big mistake today. I tried to swing a 7-pounder into the boat. That didn’t work out well. I’m around ’em. I just need to catch ’em tomorrow.”

Crochet having fun
“It was fun out there today,” said Crochet. “I caught them pretty easy and quick earlier in the week. Today was a grind. I had to zig and zag and make lots of decisions. I’m glad I made the right ones. I saw a little something today that should help me tomorrow.”

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