West Point was a really disappointing tournament for me. It marked the third tournament in a row that I have failed to cash a check. I haven't had that happen in quite some time. Right now, I feel like there is a lot of pressure on me to perform at Murray. I am not going to let the pressure get to me though, I am just going to go out and fish. As long as I keep my head in the right place, I still have a shot at making the Classic cut.
The reason West Point was such a struggle for me and several other anglers is because we just under estimated it. I was anticipating a low-weight, grinding it out to catch 5 keepers type of event. The type of event where a 12 lb average would put you in the final day. Everyone I talked to assured me that it would be that way, but I guess when you put the 100 best anglers in the world on a body of water, it pretty much blows away all preconceived notions. In hindsight, I really wish I would have done more of my OWN homework, instead of relying on word of mouth information. I didn't have a good practice there, and that kind of haunted me the whole tournament. I was counting on the lake to unfold and reveal itself to me a little bit each day, but it didn't, and it caught me by surprise. On day two of the event, I scrambled and fished new water in an effort to up-size my catch, but I ended up crashing and burning trying to swing for the fences. Chances are, if I would have kept the same game plan I had on day one I would have made the day 3 cut. But, it is what it is. Lesson learned, and now it's on to the next one.
I am little nervous about Murray, but I am really excited. The pressure is on, and my practice wasn't very good, but I know what I need to do. Murray is a spot lake, in that there is so much stuff that looks the same, and looks like it should produce, but each different spot has subtle differences that can be the difference between getting a bite and not getting a single sniff. Clouds and a breeze will definitely help my cause out there, but it is looking like Murray is running on a shortage of those for this week. It will really come down to a right time, right place kind of scenario out there, and will probably be similar to how West Point was. Running and gunning just stopping to make a cast or two before you move on to the next spot. While it might not be my favorite way to fish, I do know what I have to do, and I am ready to turn the corner in this season and get to where I need to be.