DJ Smith wins co-angler title


courtesy Randy Haynes

GILBERTSVILLE, Ky. – Low water levels on Kentucky/Barkley lakes may have diminished this week’s weights at the EverStart Series Central Division tournament presented by Evinrude, but it didn’t diminish Randy Haynes victory on Saturday. Haynes, a resident of Counce, Tenn., weighed a five-bass limit totaling 19 pounds, 10 ounces on the final day of the tournament to win with a three-day total of 15 bass weighing 54 pounds, 6 ounces. For his victory, Haynes earned $35,000.

“I’ve been shaking since I caught my last fish,” said Haynes. “This has been a tough tournament and I knew that when I saw Curt (McGuire) jumping around to the same holes that I was fishing today that it wasn’t going to be easy. He was on one side of the river and I was on the other looking for that miracle school that was going to push us over the top. We fish so much alike it is just pitiful. This is a nice win.

“I had a really great practice,” Haynes continued. “Saturday through Tuesday the fish were biting like mad, but then the fish made a move. I started up north on Thursday and really struggled so the last two days I went down to Paris and the fishing was a lot better. The lake was under a ton of pressure and I think the fish decided it was time to make a move.

“I think the turning point for me in this tournament was when I caught my big fish on day 2 and brought in the biggest bag of the tournament (19-7). It was then that I started to understand what was going on. Coming into the tournament I really thought it was going to take 75 pounds to win and 60 to make the cut.

“I was fishing the main river ledges with Strike King 6XD with a rattler and when the bite died I changed to the silent 6XD. I was also using Strike King 1-ounce football jigs.”

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