Hackney takes Table Rock
2005 CITGO Bassmaster Pro Tour — Kimberling City, Mo.
BASS Communications — April 3, 2005
For his first Tour win, Greg Hackney finished more than 7 pounds ahead. Hackney had never won a Bassmaster Tour event prior to the Table Rock tournament and had been saddled with the bridesmaid tag a few times. His fourth consecutive limit gave him a tournament total of 57-9, more than 7 pounds better than Martens, who finished second with 50-3.
"I thought I might choke again when I wasn't catching the same fish that I had been catching the previous days," Hackney said. "This is a great way to top off the year."
Following Hackney and Martens were Kansas's Brent Chapman (47-14), Michigan's Kevin VanDam (47-7), Oklahoma's Jeff Reynolds (46-7) and Mississippi's Pete Ponds (46-5).
Hackney fished a green pumpkin Strike King 3X finesse worm on a small jighead around secondary points in major creeks. He used spinning gear and 8-pound fluorocarbon line to work the bait slowly around ledges dropping from eight to 12 feet deep to catch his winning strings.
Hackney took a slim 2-ounce lead over VanDam into the finals and was shocked when VanDam zeroed on the final day.
"It was unreal when Kevin didn't weigh a fish," Hackney said. "I almost lost my breath."
"It was just one of those days," VanDam said. "That's fishing. I couldn't buy a keeper, but I sure helped CITGO out today because I burned a lot of gas out there driving around the lake."
Sunday's Purolator Big Bass Award went to Mississippi's Pete Ponds for his 3-14 lunker. Impressively, Ponds took big bass honors on three of the four days of competition, earning $1,000 for each lunker.
The CITGO Bassmaster Tour event on Table Rock Lake will be telecast on The CITGO Bassmasters on Saturday, April 9 at 10:00 a.m. ET on ESPN2.