FLW College Fishing- Lake Roosevelt

On September 24th myself and fellow OBT members headed down to Phoenix, AZ to fish the FLW College Fishing qualifier tournament at Lake Roosevelt. Lake Roosevelt is located an hour and a half outside of Phoenix, with the closest town being Payson, AZ, just 45 miles north of the lake. Since I had previously qualified for the FLW College Fishing regional event after finishing fifth at the CA Delta event, I was fishing for a check. My usual partner Ross Richards did not fish the tournament and several new members of the University of Oregon bass team were able to attend.

We had followed the results and heard the dock talk about the fishing all week, knowing it was going to be tough and very hot at 105 degrees. I had previously fished the lake just over a year and a half ago in the Spring, bringing in a decent limit at the time and finishing 8th. I finished 8th once again, as my partner Jacob Bliss and I brought in three fish for 4-02. Going into the tournament we had few spots we felt comfortable with and knew we would have to grind to find the fish. Moments after hooking into my first fish and calling for the net, I quickly realized I was on my own, as Jacob had a fish of his own on the line. We brought the double to the boat, with his fish keeping and mine falling just short. The spot was fairly unique, a shallow flat on the backside of an island, protected from the wind with a solid mudline. We fished the area for several more hours, adding two more keepers, and watching as other boats came and went, unable to find the bite we were on. By 9:30, we still had our three fish and chose to make a move. Hoping to find another spot that would replicate our early success, we scanned the shore, and stopped at some places I had previously fished. By the end of the day we were only able to put two more shorts in the boat. It was very frustrating to not be able to put another keeper in the boat after starting off fairly well for the conditions.

The first place team, CSU Long Beach, won with only 7lbs 10 oz, not a bad limit for the week, but surely very attainable. Bass fishing is about preparation, on the water decisions and a little bit of luck, and I was not happy with the decisions I made before and after the tournament. With each tournament I can reflect and learn from my mistakes, making a better effort each and every time. With regionals just over a week away, there is no room for error and each and every day I will have time set aside to prepare as I start my final year of school at the University of Oregon and FLW College Fishing.

Leave a Reply