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Texan Collins Keeps On Course To Victory In B.A.S.S. Nation Divisional
6/10/2013
Credit:
BASS press release
ZAVALLA, Texas - The frog bite was on at Sam Rayburn Reservoir but Texan Albert Collins avoided that temptation and won the B.A.S.S. Nation Central Divisional.

While runner-up Brandon Pedigo and other contestants turned in double-digit sacks today by fishing plastic frogs in the shallow grass, Collins stuck with an offshore summertime pattern of targeting channel swings near points. He brought a 17-pound, 4-ounce limit of five bass to the scales to clinch the victory. He noted the fish were caught at various depths.

"I was fishing different areas of the lake," said Collins, who finished with a three-day total of 15 bass weighing 53-4. "In some areas they were in 6 to 8 feet and in some areas they were in 18 to 20 feet.

"My primary lure, the one I caught the most fish on, was a Missile Baits Tomahawk worm [in the Love Bug hue]." The 48-year-old plumber from Nacogdoches, Texas, said he rigged the worm Texas style with a 5/16-ounce lead weight and a 5/0 Gamakatsu worm hook.

On the first day, he tried to fish as many different areas and types of habitat as he could to accumulate a decent weight, which he accomplished with a 16-12 limit to move into the runner-up spot behind Pedigo.

The second day started slowly for Collins, but he finished strong with the heaviest bag of the tournament (19-4) and leapfrogged over Pedigo to take over the lead. Collins won the Livingston Lures award of $250 because he led the tournament on Day 2.

The fishing got tougher for Collins during Friday's final round, because he exhausted several of his best spots in order to build such a heavy stringer of bass on the second day.

"It worked out well though," said the Nacogdoches Bass Club member. "I planned everything out, and it worked."

Collins credits his partner in the draw tournament, Kevin Johnston of Missouri, for letting him call the shots in the final round. "He let me position the boat to the point to where I had a good advantage to throw at everything without getting interfered with," he said.

By winning the divisional and finishing as the top angler on his state team, Collins earned a berth in the B.A.S.S. Nation Championship to be held on Lake Dardanelle in Arkansas, Oct. 24-26.

Other state winners who qualified for the National Championship were Doug Thompson of Arkansas Beau Branine, Kansas Ryan Lavigne, Louisiana Randy Ladner, Mississippi Brian Wilson, Missouri Nick Ash, Nebraska and Pedigo of Oklahoma.

Louisiana won the team championship for the second straight year with 301 pounds, 12 ounces, while the host Texas squad finished second with 280-15.

The Carhartt Big Bass Award of $500 was presented to Destre Dedeaux of Mississippi for his 8-6 largemouth caught on Day 1.

For more details, visit Bassmaster.com.

2013 B.A.S.S. Nation Official Sponsors: Toyota, Bass Pro Shops, Berkley, Evan Williams Bourbon, Humminbird, Mercury, Minn Kota, Nitro, Skeeter Boats, Triton Boats, Yamaha

2013 B.A.S.S. Nation Supporting Sponsors: Boat US, Carhartt, Diet Mountain Dew, Livingston Lures, Lowrance, Luck-E-Strike, Power-Pole, Shimano

About B.A.S.S.
For more than 45 years, B.A.S.S. has served as the authority on bass fishing. The organization advances the sport through advocacy, outreach and an expansive tournament structure while connecting directly with the passionate community of bass anglers through its Bassmaster media vehicles.

The Bassmaster brand and its multimedia platforms are guided by a mission to serve all fishing fans. Through its industry-leading publications - Bassmaster Magazine and B.A.S.S. Times - comprehensive website Bassmaster.com and ESPN2 and Outdoor Channel television programming, Bassmaster provides rich, leading-edge content true to the lifestyle.

The Bassmaster Tournament Trail includes the Bassmaster Elite Series, Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Open Series, Carhartt Bassmaster College Series, B.A.S.S. Nation events and the ultimate celebration of competitive fishing, the Bassmaster Classic.

B.A.S.S. offers an array of services to its more than 500,000 members and remains focused on issues related to conservation and water access. The organization is headquartered in Birmingham, Ala.