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Reel Time Fishing Northwest

Mark Yuasa covers fishing and outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.

August 13, 2011 at 11:00 PM

Luke Clausen of Spokane within sight of winning his second Forrest Wood Cup bass fishing event

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Chevy pro Luke Clausen of Spokane is right on the tail of National Guard pro Scott Martin of Clewiston, Fla., who holds a 4-pound, 14-ounce lead in the Forrest Wood Cup bass tournament on Lake Ouachita in Hot Springs, Arkansas.

Clausen caught a five bass-limit weighing 16-3 for a three-day total of 15 bass for 41-14.

Leader Martin crossed the stage with a five-bass limit weighing 16-1 in a tournament featuring 58 of the world’s best professional bass anglers, and will be decided between the top 10 pros fishing Sunday.

Martin led the first day of competition, but lost his lead to Diet Mt. Dew pro Jason Christie of Park Hill, Okla., after Friday’s competition.

If Clausen makes the move he will become the first two time Forrest Wood champion.

Clausen said topwater baits have played a key role in his success during the week, including a prop bait and a couple of different walking baits.

“Today I lost the first three that bit, and then I caught 10 in a row and then I missed three more after that,” said Clausen, who won the 2004 Forrest Wood Cup and could become the only angler to win two championship titles. “You just go on streaks where it seems like they’re eating it better and you catch them.

“I’m just going to go out and fish hard all day,” Clausen added. “That’s all I can do. I’m going to go out and grind it out and hopefully I’ll get five of those better bites like I had today. The potential to catch 20 (pounds) is there. You see them swimming down the bank. They’re just incredibly smart and hard to catch.”

Rounding out the top 10 pros are:

3rd: EverStart pro Randall Tharp, Gardendale, Ala., 15 bass, 41-6

4th: National Guard pro Mark Rose, Marion, Ark., 15 bass, 41-5

5th: Diet Mt. Dew pro Jason Christie, Park Hill, Okla., 15 bass, 40-12

6th: Todd Auten, Lake Wylie, S.C., 15 bass, 38-9

7th: Cody Meyer, Grass Valley, Calif., 15 bass, 37-13

8th: Castrol pro David Dudley, Lynchburg, Va., 15 bass, 37-13

9th: Andy Montgomery, Grover, N.C., 14 bass, 37-12

10th: Andy Morgan, Dayton, Tenn., 12 bass, 37-3

Overall there were 82 bass weighing 205 pounds caught by pros Saturday. The catch included eight five-bass limits.

The third day of competition marks the cut to the top 10 pros and the crowning of the co-angler champion. Pros are competing for the title of Forrest Wood Cup champion, the most prestigious award in professional bass fishing, as well as a top award of up to $600,000 — the sport’s biggest award.

Paul Mueller of Southbury, Conn., won the Co-angler Division with 13 bass weighing 28-7. The win earned Mueller $60,000.

Overall there were 42 bass weighing 82 pounds, 3 ounces caught by co-anglers Saturday. The catch included one five-bass limit.

Anglers will take off from Brady Mountain Resort & Marina located at 4120 Brady Mountain Rd. in Royal, Ark., at 6:30 Sunday morning. Sunday’s weigh-in will be held at Summit Arena & Hot Springs Convention Center located at 134 Convention Blvd. in Hot Springs beginning at 5 p.m. EDT.

(Photo courtesy of Julie Huber, FLW Outdoors Communications Specialist)

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