Yankton, South Dakota, – June 5, 2008
The second day of the TBF Central Division Championship was extremely different than the first. The day began with calm skies and a light breeze, but quickly turned to thunderstorms terrorizing southeastern S. Dakota. Golf ball size hail, tornado watches, and 100 mile winds plagued the area. Although the conditions were tougher, and the amount of bass caught was a lot less, the anglers rose above their circumstances and kept fighting for a place at the top.
Robert Cartlidge, the TBF President, stepped into that position today. He brought in 8 lbs. 4 ounces of bass, making his total 17 lbs. 13 ounces. Robert is also leading his home state of Oklahoma. But, only 3 lbs. separate him and angler Stewart Ryan from the top Oklahoma spot. “I traveled about the same distance down the lake today as I did yesterday; the biggest difference was the weather as a severe storm blew in mid-morning. We had to stop for 30 minutes and seek shelter under a barge walkway during the hail storm. Other than that, the bite was non-existent before 9:00 this morning; the fish just would not cooperate. Around 9:00 am I was finally able to figure them out, and was culling by 10:30. Although the conditions were not exactly favorable, my partner and I caught some great smallmouth bass,” Robert said.
Marion Halbersma from Missouri, the 2nd place individual finisher from yesterday, was also 2nd today. Fighting to close the gap, Marion brought in 7 lbs. 13 ounces of bass; only one ounce now separates him from the first place spot overall. “I was affected a little by the conditions today, but I started to get a hold on a different style of fishing and managed to catch a limit by noon. In the end, even with the horrible weather, I was happy to know I was able to hold on to the 2nd place standing,” Marion said.
Close behind Marion is Jason Baird from Kansas and Mark Hensiek from Arkansas. Both anglers are tied for 3rd place overall with a total weight of 16 lbs. 1 ounce. Jason caught a limit of bass weighing 7 lbs. 1 ounce today, and he is leading the state of Kansas. Mark Hensiek also caught a limit today, which weighed 7 lbs. 3 ounces, and he is leading the state team of Arkansas.
In the state standings, leading the pack for the second day in a row, the state team of Oklahoma increased their lead to today from 8 ounce, to 3 lbs. 14 ounces. The Oklahoma President had nothing but great things to say about his team. “Our state member’s first focus is working well as a team, and this has proven to be a great fishery for them to really do that. Tonight we will focus on the things that we need to work on for the final day, so we can return tomorrow and finish what we have came here to do,” Gary Gunter said.
Bob Walla is leading the hosting state of Nebraska with a total weight of 14 lbs. 2 ounces. He caught a limit of five fish today despite his tough conditions. “Today was the second worst boating experience I have ever had, second only to when the rain was so bad my Ranger boat ended up full of water. However, I did catch a limit by 12:30, and I culled three times, so, in the end it worked out in my favor,” Bob said.
The top two leaders from each state will advance to the Federation National Championship in 2009. There they will compete for the largest purse in over 30 years of federation fishing.
Day 3 of this two day event will get under way tomorrow, with weigh-in at 3:30 at Prairie Dog bay Ramp, in Northville state park. Weigh-ins are free to the public.