7-Month-Pregnant Angler in the Top 5; 80-year-old Co-Angler Also Near the Top

LEWISVILLE, Texas– Tennessee angler Dianna Clark overcame sweltering heat and slow bites to lead the first day at Lewisville Lake in the second tournament of the 2006 Mercury Marine Women’s Bassmaster Tour presented by Triton Boats season.

After practice days on the Dallas/Fort Worth-area fishery, anglers had predicted the lake’s low water level would make catching fish difficult. While those predictions came true – only a handful of the anglers caught their five-fish limit – a few unexpected women shook up the leaderboard, including a woman who is seven months pregnant and her 80-year-old home state friend.

At the top of the list was Clark, of Bumpus Mills, Tenn., who weighed in 12 pounds, 6 ounces and carried a lead of almost 2 pounds into the second day of the three-day tournament. Sheri Glasgow of Muskogee, Okla., who finished second in the first WBT event of the season, held second place after bringing in four fish weighing 10-13.

Clark caught her first fish shortly after 7 a.m. but said the afternoon was better for her. “I treated (Thursday) like a cold front condition,” she said. “I was moving everything really slowly.”

Clark said she fished with a balsa wood crankbait for part of the day and a Gene Larue bait in other parts of her time on the water. Her five fish at the weigh-in were almost identical in size, and she reported culling four fish during the day.

I’m hoping everything will stay like it did (Thursday),” said Clark, who finished 32nd in both the WBT preview event held here last year and in the 2006 season opener. “The hotter it is the better it will be for me.

“Right now, the fish are in pockets of deeper water and the bite is really slow,” said Glasgow. “The wind died down in the afternoon and it got even slower. Normally in this lake there are pockets of timber where you can pitch and flip, but with the water the way it is you couldn’t do much of that.

Cindy Caperton of Madison, Tenn., was in third with 10-4, followed by Patti Campbell of Waxahachie, Texas, who is fishing a tournament as a pro angler for the first time, with 10-3.

“I’m excited,” said Campbell, who admitted to being nervous at the morning launch. “I feel pretty confident right now. I just stayed on the path that I practiced on, and fished the rocks all day. I was lucky enough to have two fish by 7:30, but it was definitely slow. You just have to wait them out.”

Feel-good story Becky McKinney of Ocala, Fla., who is seven months pregnant, was in fifth place with 9-12. “I had my limit before 11,” said McKinney. “I can’t tell you what I did, but it’s probably different from what all my competitors did. I have two more days to fish and I’m keeping it to myself.”

Cheryl Allen of Yantis, Texas, and Karen Williams of Stark City, Mo., are tied in the co-angler division with 5-5 each, which Williams got with one fish to earn the Purolator Big Bass Award and $1,000.

Eighty-year-old Florida grandmother Violette Sesco, who traveled to the tournament with McKinney, was in third with 4-15. The oldest active BASS competitor, Sesco was a late addition to the tournament field after changing her mind about not participating.

“I’m really proud of her,” said McKinney. “She’s an inspiration to me and she said I was to her, too. She’s shown me that I’ll be able to enjoy fishing my entire life.”

Friday’s weigh-in will be held at Lewisville Lake Park and the final day weigh-in will be held at Will Rogers Coliseum in Fort Worth along with the Day 3 weigh-in for the Bassmaster Memorial event, being held on Eagle Mountain Lake and Benbrook Lake.

First prize is a Triton Boat and Mercury Marine package valued at $50,000 in the pro class and a boat valued at $25,000 in the co-angler division. In addition to the prize money, anglers are also chasing points toward qualifying for the Women’s Bassmaster Tour championship, a tournament that will be held in conjunction with the 2007 CITGO Bassmaster Classic, and the Toyota Women’s Bassmaster Tour Angler of the Year title.

Sponsors of the Women’s Bassmaster Tour include Mercury Marine, Triton Boats, Lowrance Electronics, MotorGuide, Advance Auto Parts and Plano.

Local sponsors for the event are the City of Lewisville, Lewisville Area Chamber of Commerce, Sneaky Pete’s Restaurant and Banquet Facility and the Baymont Inn and Suites.

BASS is the worldwide authority on bass fishing, sanctioning more than 20,000 events through the BASS Federation annually. Guided by its mission to serve all fishing fans, BASS sets the standard for credibility, professionalism, sportsmanship and conservation, as it has for nearly 40 years.

BASS stages bass fishing tournaments for every skill level and culminates with the CITGO Bassmaster Classic. Through its clubs, youth programs, aquatic resource advocacy, magazine publishing and multimedia platforms, BASS offers the industry’s widest array of services and support to its nearly 550,000 members. The organization is headquartered in Celebration, Fla.

For more information, contact BASS Communications at (407) 566-2208 or visit www.bassmaster.com.