Anthony Gagliardi won the Forrest Wood Cup in 2014 on Lake Murray, and he’s in great position after day one to be the first to win two. Weighing 21-1, which was amazingly the biggest bag Gagliardi has weighed all season, he sits in second place just 4 ounces behind Atkins.
Fishing a lot like he did on the final day of his 2014 win, Gagliardi leaned hard on the offshore schooling bite to accumulate his catch. Unlike in 2014, he spent most of the day actually casting, not simply waiting for fish to surface on blueback herring. Throwing just a topwater plug and a soft-plastic jerkbait, the South Carolina pro says he’s only caught about eight keepers on the day, but he caught a lot of quality and one near-6-pounder for a kicker.
“That was probably the biggest fish I’ve ever caught fishing like I do out there,” says Gagliardi. “I’m probably not going to catch one like that tomorrow, but I still have some stuff left. I can get bites, and when I get bites a lot of them have been quality bites. If things work out like I envision I think I can have five good fish, but maybe not with a kicker like that.”
As a veteran of Lake Murray, Gagliardi admits that his weight on day one surprised him, but he’s not entirely shocked to see the bite as good as it is. He says the water temperature has dropped about 10 degrees over the past three weeks, and that slim hint of fall-ish weather has the offshore fish chasing more willingly than they did in 2014.
Photo/Story Joe Cook, wltx COLUMBIA, SC - One of the biggest fishing tournaments in the country will be taking place right here in the Midlands this week. The Fishing League Worldwide Forrest Wood Cup tournament will be held at Lake Murray.
The last time this event was in Columbia was in 2014 and that's when local angler Anthony Gagliardi of Prosperity, SC won the championship. He's back in the tournament this year.
Newberry based company Falcon Boats is one of his sponsors and and he has a good chance to become the first angler to win two Forrest Wood Cup titles. This year's contest will be on his home lake and he'll have to beat out 53 other fishermen to accomplish the feat.
"It'd be awful nice to accomplish something that's not been done but honestly just winning it again in front of a home crowd that's what would be special to me," Gagliardi said. "It's in my backyard and I will have a lot of fan support, a lot of family and friend support but then to be able to be the guy-I was first guy to win two that'd be pretty cool. That'd be a pretty good feather in your hat but that's not what's driving me, that's not my motivation going into this one." Full Story