A missed fish during a tournament will usually cost you a check. Three missed big fish are sure to put you at the bottom of the standings. 99% of the time that is what happens. Last Sunday my partner Josh Jackson (Chopper) and I fished our Anglers Choice season opener on Cedar Lake. With the recent weather changes we were torn between going shallow or deep. We opted to go shallow and just look for two good bites. The lake limit is two fish over 18 inches and three fish between 12 and 14 inches. Basically we were looking for two big bites. After catching several fish in the slot I decided to switch to a Strike King Premier Plus spinnerbait. As I pumped the bait through the grass a five pound fish grabbed the bait and I missed! An hour later and even bigger fish did the same thing. I was 0 for 2 and trying to remain positive. Chopper picked up a 1.5 crankbait and hooked what he thought was a catfish. For ten seconds the fish barely moved. He finally pulled it to the surface and I couldnít believe my eyes. It was much bigger than the first two I had lost. I started to go for the net when the crankbait flew past my head. Now we were 0 for 3 and things were starting to spin out. I picked my rod back up and took a cast and landed what would turn out to be big fish of the tournament. We hunted around for one more big bite praying we had not blown the tournament when Chopper set the hook on a solid five pound fish. Redemption finally! We made our way back into a creek where we finished out catching our small fish on a Red Eye Shad. Our total weight was 14.19 pounds with a 6.22 big bass. We won the event by .28 pounds. What this proved to me and Chopper was that spinning out over lost fish will get you nowhere. You can turn an event around if you stay focused and more importantly, have fun. After all, itís just fishing.
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