Saturday, February 18, 2017

2017 Walmart FLW Tour Lake Travis Day 2: Patek Leads with 36-06lbs!

Pre-spawn staging area moves Patek into lead.
(Photo: FLW)
Stephen Patek of Garland, Texas is fishing his third year on the FLW Tour and for the first time in his short career he finds himself leading an FLW Tour event after day two of the FLW Tour at Lake Travis presented by Quaker State.
After loading up 20 pounds, 5 ounces on the scale on day one, Patek backed it up with 14-1 today to nudge Bryan Thrift off the lead by 4 ounces with a two-day total of 34 pounds, 6 ounces.
Patek owes the bulk of his catch to a single-cast hot spot that he found on the third day of practice while graphing.
“When I idled over it, it looked like a loaded ledge on Kentucky Lake,” he says. “I spun around, made one cast and caught a 2-pounder and left. I didn’t return until yesterday morning and caught them pretty quick.”

Patek returned to his tiny staging spot located in the mouth of a pocket this morning and had a limit wrapped up in an hour. Patek poled down in a shallow area and fired the exact same cast with a Carolina rig for about 45 minutes to quickly catch his limit.
“It’s just a classic staging spot,” Patek says. “It’s a bare hump surrounded by really thick bushes and trees. It tops out in about 18 feet and there is some rock up on top that’s holding them.”
After catching his limit, Patek left the spot in search of upgrades on a big swimbait, which did not happen today.
“I would love to find another spot or two like it,” he says. “I have one other deep spot that produced a 7-pounder yesterday, but I didn’t catch much on it today. I actually spent some tournament time graphing around more today to see if I could find something similar, but I felt like I needed to be fishing instead.”
Interestingly, Patek says he has not fished his hot spot again in the afternoon either of the first two days. The question now becomes whether his spot will hold up for two more days.
“I found it in the afternoon, but I have not fished it in the afternoon,” he says. “I might try circling back on it tomorrow afternoon and see if they re-group for a late-day bite.”
As for his thoughts on leading his first FLW Tour event, Patek says he is feeling good and thinks the spot will kick out a few more solid keepers tomorrow.
“I am anxious to get back out there and see what it’s got to offer tomorrow,” he adds. “I just hope they keep funneling in there and reloading.”
Top 20 pros
1. Stephen Patek – Garland, Texas – 34-6 (10)
2. Bryan Thrift – Shelby, N.C. – 34-2 (10)
3. Jeremy Lawyer – Sarcoxie, Mo. – 31-11 (10)
4. Clark Wendlandt – Leander, Texas – 29-10 (10)
5. Mark Rose – West Memphis, Ark. – 28-12 (10)
6. Clark Reehm – Huntington, Texas – 28-8 (9)
7. Dylan Hays – Sheridan, Ark. – 28-6 (10)
8. Brad Knight – Lancing, Tenn. – 26-15 (10)
9. Scott Suggs – Alexander, Ark. – 26-10 (10)
10. Christopher Brasher – Longview, Texas – 26-4 (10)
11. Troy Morrow – Eastanollee, Ga. – 26-3 (10)
12. Bradley Hallman – Norman, Okla. – 25-12 (8)
13. Jeff Gustafson – Keewatin, Ont. – 25-10 (10)
14. Bill Smith Jr. – Burlington, Ky. – 25-8 (9)
15. Anthony Gagliardi – Prosperity, S.C. – 25-1 (10)
16. Scott Canterbury – Springville, Ala. – 24-14 (10)
17. Clayton Batts – Macon, Ga. – 23-6 (10)
18. Jamie Horton – Centerville, Ala. – 23-3  (10)
19. Tim McDonald – Prestonburg, Ky. – 23-0 (10)
20. Casey Scanlon – Lenexa, Kan. – 22-11 (9)

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