"I've been drop-shotting on a hump in about 27 feet of water," Cox said. "That one area has produced 90 to 100 pounds of bass over the past three days. The biggest one I caught today was close to 7 pounds." All of Cox's bass, including the 7-pounder, were smallmouths.
Cox has been making a lengthy run, around 35 miles, to his hotspot and catching his limit early. He said his livewell was full by 9:30 on the first two days and shortly after noon on Friday.
Rounding out the top five pros are Eric Struif of Lake Villa, Ill. (five bass, 21 pounds, 3 ounces); Dick Shaffer of Rockford, Ohio (five bass, 20 pounds, 6 ounces); Charlie Hatley of Grove City, Ohio (five bass, 18 pounds, 10 ounces); and Kota Kiriyama of Irvine, Calif. (five bass, 18 pounds).
Del Smith of Castalia, Ohio, caught five bass weighing 21 pounds, 10 ounces to lead the Co-angler Division. Smith has been fishing a plastic worm, the make and color of which he's chosen to keep to himself. He did reveal that the bass have been hitting the lure especially well up in the day, after the sun came up.
Rounding out the top five co-anglers are Charles Hasty of Toledo, Ohio (five bass, 21 pounds, 1 ounce); Jeff Hahn of Alliance, Ohio (five bass, 19 pounds, 11 ounces); Andrew Bray of Clinton Township (five bass, 19 pounds, 5 ounces) and Kenneth Taylor of Shelby Township (five bass, 15 pounds, 14 ounces).
Anglers caught a total of 79 bass weighing 306 pounds, 1 ounce on the third day of the event, giving each bass an average weight of nearly 4 pounds.
Elizabeth Park located at 200 Grosse Isle Parkway in Trenton hosts the daily takeoffs at 6:30 a.m. Saturday's weigh-ins will be held at the Wal-Mart located at 200 North Cooper Road in Henderson beginning at 4 p.m.
EverStart Series tournaments are four-day events consisting of two rounds. The entire field competes Wednesday and Thursday, and the top 10 pros and co-anglers - based on two-day accumulated weights - advance to the final round. Anglers start at zero Friday, and pro and co-angler winners are determined Saturday based on two-day accumulated weights.