A Pitch for Winter Spoons

I’m used to fishing blueback lakes and chasing the bass that are chasing them. In the winter, though, blueback lakes sort of fall back into line with non-blueback lakes. That is, the bite reverts to a shad-type of bite as the bait and bass become more stationary and bottom-oriented. If the fish you catch spit up anything, it’s likely to be shad. For me, it becomes prime time again for jigging spoons. Spoons used to be a lot more popular as winter baits in shad lakes, but there doesn’t seem to be as many people fishing with them these days. They’ve sort of gone out of fashion, but that might be one of the best reasons to use them now.

Most of the time when I’m fishing a spoon I’m looking for bait – in creek channels, ditches, along deep points or on flats next to creek mouths – anywhere you might find bait schooled up. I graph and look for balls of shad. Then I just lower the spoon down to the same depth as the shad and start working it up and down; snapping it a foot or so and letting it fall back. If the line jumps or stops, I set the hook. I also fish spoons in brushpiles and the like because this is where some of the biggest bass hang out. Here, I just work the spoon right down in the middle of it. The spoon will hang up sometimes, but it’s usually fairly easy to jiggle out.

Although there are all sorts of jigging spoons around now, as far as I’m concerned it’s hard to beat a ¾-ounce Hopkins Little Shorty in hammered silver or gold. The bass like it, so I like it.


20 Questions with Anthony Gagliardi

You’ve heard about Chevy pro Anthony Gagliardi’s storybook season, and the techniques he used to win the 2014 Forrest Wood Cup.

Beyond that, we thought it was time to get to know the South Carolina pro himself. Read More


Give Gagliardi a break

Anthony Gagliardi didn’t even have time to savor his Forrest Wood Cup victory on Lake Murray before the naysayers started showing up. He isn’t a good sportsman, say some. His victory should be nullified, say others.

The smear campaign started soon after an alleged incident on the water that was reported on a couple of Web-based bass forums. People jumped to conclusions without knowing the facts, but these days that’s pretty standard operating procedure for some who have nothing better to do than put a negative spin on everything. Read More


iON Captures Anthony Gagliardi's Championship Day


Gagliardi's Epic Comeback Gets Fairytale Ending


Everybody has a fish story. Some are better than others, but it's going to be hard to top the one Anthony Gagliardi has about his 2014 season. Wait until you hear the ending.

Six months ago, he was left questioning whether it was worth fishing the remainder of this year's FLW Tour schedule. In February, he was disqualified for a rules violation that occurred in practice at Lake Okeechobee and figured then his odds of qualifying for the Forrest Wood Cup at Lake Murray (his home lake) were too long to overcome.

After deciding to continue fishing the rest of the schedule, he stormed through the final five events and snuck into the Cup field by 1 point.

This week, he had to deal with the pressures of being the hometown local favorite at the Cup. Sure, he got to sleep in his own bed, but he also had hundreds of places he could've fished and years of experience on the sprawling impoundment, which can sometimes be a detriment. He avoided those pitfalls this week and after day 3, he was in 3rd place, less than 2 pounds off the lead.

On Sunday, he punctuated his incredible comeback in storybook fashion, edging Scott Canterbury by the slimmest of margins – 1 ounce – to capture the Forrest Wood Cup and $500,000 prize in front of an adoring crowd at the Colonial Life Arena in Columba, S.C. The margin of victory would've been 5 ounces had it not been for a dead fish in Gagliardi's bag, but based on the season he had it seemed fitting that the outcome be as close as possible. Read Full Story Bassfan.com



Anthony wins FWC by 1 ounce!


Photo by Brian Lindberg Never has there been a better ending to a season that began with devastation.

At this point, we all know Anthony Gagliardi's story. He was disqualified from the season opener on Lake Okeechobee. His odds of making the Forrest Wood Cup were slim to none. But Gagliardi overcame those odds. At a near record-setting pace, Gagliardi clawed back for five tournaments, sneaking into the Cup field by one place in the Angler of the Year standings.

It was a storybook tale, and tonight, Gagliardi wrote the final chapter.

In front of a packed hometown crowd at Colonial Life Arena in Columbia, S.C., Gagliardi stunned the bass-fishing world with a final-day limit of 13 pounds, 14 ounces that bumped his tournament total to 51 pounds, 2 ounces - just 1 ounce more than Straight Talk pro Scott Canterbury's final weight. For his victory, Gagliardi was handed a $500,000 check from Forrest L. Wood.

From out to in by one place; from the middle of the pack to champion by 1 ounce - Anthony Gagliardi is the 2014 Forrest Wood Cup champion.

COLUMBIA, S.C. – Chevy pro Anthony Gagliardi of Prosperity, S.C., crossed the stage with a five-bass limit weighing 13 pounds, 14 ounces Sunday to claim the title of Forrest Wood Cup Champion at the Forrest Wood Cup at Lake Murray presented by Walmart. Gagliardi, with a four-day total of 19 bass for 51-2, won by a narrow 1-ounce margin over Straight Talk Wireless pro Scott Canterbury of Springville, Ala., and won the $500,000 prize in professional bass fishing’s world championship that featured 45 of the best professional anglers from across the country casting for the sport’s top cash award of $500,000.

“This is unbelievable,” said Gagliardi, who overcame an early-season disqualification at the first FLW Tour event of the year on Lake Okeechobee and managed to qualify to compete in the Forrest Wood Cup in just five events. “To win the Forrest Wood Cup, no matter where it is, is the most prestigious event that I could win in our sport. But to do it here, in front of all of these people who were rooting for me, it really just makes it so much more special. Read More - Results - Video of Win


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