The largest crappie of the year was caught
in the March 31st Pickwick/Wilson event
Crappie anglers from several states traveled to Lakes Pickwick and Wilson near Sheffield, AL to participate in a Crappie USA (CUSA) tournament. Local and traveling anglers fished for cash, prizes, and an opportunity to compete at the 2018 CUSA Classic which will feature a guaranteed payout of $125,000 in cash and prizes.
In addition to good bags of Alabama crappie, the heaviest crappie of the season was brought to the scales at River Front Park in Sheffield.
“The 3.08 weighed in by Larry and David Sisson is the largest fish weighed in to date on the Crappie USA circuit during 2018,” said Darrell Van Vactor, General Manager of Crappie USA. “It was a beautiful black crappie and a good representation of the quality of the crappie on Pickwick and Wilson Lakes.”
A total of 29 boats fished the popular event, 14 in the Pro Division and 15 in the Amateur Division. A total of $5950 was distributed to the winners.
Pro Division Results
Henry and Jo Haley of Carmi IL claimed the top spot in the Pro Division. The husband/wife team weighed in 13.2 pounds to earn $ 1500.00 and another $500 Ranger Cup bonus.
“We targeted mid-range structure where water wasn’t as stained,” reported Jo. We caught most of our bigger fish in 10-foot range. There were some fish shallower. We covered a lot of territory. We used jig colors that usually work better for us in dingy water. We caught a limit of really nice, healthy fish.”
Team Haley fished Bear and Indian Creeks on Pickwick. They caught a full limit of seven fish for the day. They did not tip with minnows, just used yellow tube jigs to take the top honors.
Second place in the Pickwick/Wilson event went to Larry and David Sisson from Wingo, KY. They fished Yellow Creek on Pickwick using black/chartreuse jigs. They were slow trolling in 6 feet of water to catch 40 fish for the day. Their 12.91-pound stringer included a nice a 3.08-pound Pickwick slab. Their runner-up finish earned them $800 and they added the Big Fish Bonus of $390.
“This is only the second 3 pound plus fish in my career of crappie fishing tournaments,” said David. “The jigs really worked better today than live bait that I use a lot of the time.”
Brad Gillon from Halls, TN and Steve Coleman from Tiptonville, TN weighed in a bag that weighed 12.53 pounds to claim the third-place spot and earn them $ 500.00.
Halls and Coleman fished Bear Creek using Capps and Coleman live bait rigs in 6.5 feet of water. They caught what would have been just about a full two-man limit on the day.
Amateur Division Results
Matthew and Caleb Tosh of Rutherford TN teamed up to claim the Amateur Division title on Lake Pickwick. They weighed 11.17 pounds to earn $ 800. Their bag included second Big Fish which earned them an additional $170.
The adult/youth team fished back in the creeks on Pickwick Lake using Driftmaster Rod Holders. They were slow trolling red, white, and orange/chartreuse tubes. They stated that they had to move shallower as the day progressed and water temperatures moved from 59 to 61 degrees. They caught 20-25 fish for the day.
Second place went to Robert Massey and Todd Dalton from Somerset KY. The Kentucky team weighed 10.68 pounds and earned $400 plus the Ranger Cup Bonus of $125.
Massey and Dalton spider rigged all day using black/chartreuse jigs tipped with live bait. They pushed in 11 to 15 feet of water to catch 21 fish for the day. The team noted that the fish did seem to move shallower as the day progressed.
The Alabama team of Chad Brooks from Somerville, and John Childers from Union Grove claimed the third-place spot. They weighed 10.04 pounds and earned $300.
They were the highest placing team that fished Wilson Lake. They found their fish in 10 to 12 feet of water. They caught 11 fish on the day using monkey milk and shiner shad colored jigs in the bay areas.
The local team of Wayne Dickey and Bill Dickey claimed the fourth-place honors. The Florence AL team weighed in 9.68 pounds. The adult/youth team was long line trolling to catch a total of 7 fish for the day. They were pulling Roadrunner lures in a variety of colors on Wilson Lake. Their fish were in about 12 feet of water.
Darrell Van Vactor sent special thank yous to Susann Hamblin and Dennis Shearer from the Colbert County Tourism office for hosting the event and for helping make the Kids Fishing Rodeo a huge hit. There were 42 kids on hand to catch a total of 54 fish. All the youth anglers were treated to lunch after the event.
The 2018 CUSA Classic will be held October 3 – 6, 2018 on Lake Cumberland at Somerset, KY. It will feature a guaranteed payout of $125,000 in cash and prizes.
National Sponsors of Crappie USA are: Cabela’s, Ranger Boats, Mercury, Mustad, B’n’M Poles, Humminbird Electronics, Gamma, Adventure Products EGO Nets, Minn Kota, J.R. Mad’s Madgic Fish Breading, Big Bite Baits, TTI-Blakemore Road Runner, Driftmaster Rod Holders, World Fishing Network-WFN, Cumberland Crappie Double Seat Mounts, Church Tackle Company, Charlie Brewer’s Slider Co., Crappie Now On-line Magazine, Talon Shallow Water Anchors, Humminbird/Lakemaster Maps, Sunsect Sunscreen & Insect Repellent, Digital EFX Wraps, Gill Rainwear, AWD Baits, Tentnology, Crappie Magnet, Jenko Fishing, Lake Cumberland Tourism, Extreme Bait Systems, Rigrap, and Bait 2 Go.
For more information on the Classic and other CUSA events visit the website at www.crappieusa.com and Crappie USA Tournament Trail Facebook Page. The CUSA office is available by phone at 502-384-5924.