Consistency has been a struggle for most teams entered in the first three competitions of the 2013-14 American Bass Pacific Region tournaments.
There have been three different winning tandems, and only three teams have placed among the top 10 in all three events.
The three teams with top-10 finishes in all three events are Mark Maddux and Matt Quaresma, Arroyo Grande (sixth, first and sixth); Mark Hinson and Joey Reggio, San Luis Obispo (second, seventh and eighth); and Darrin Bishop, Paso Robles, and cousin Dean Miller, Tulare (10th, eighth and fifth).
The Salinas team of Jason Letterman and Scott Mullins has been a force to be reckoned with for more than a decade in Central Coast tournaments, and they eked out a win Saturday at Nacimiento Lake.
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Jason Letterman and Scott Mullins weighed a limit of 7.89 pounds and walked off with $3,848 in winnings. Their margin of victory over Stanley Beebe of San Luis Obispo, and Grover Beach partner Andy Levy was |15-hundredths of a pound.
The third stop on the six-event schedule was different as all 28 teams entered weighed a five-fish limit and only 2.39 pounds separated first place from 28th.
Beebe and Levy did not practice for the tournament and began the day figuring they had little chance of winning.
“The forecast was for very nice weather so we just went to have a good time,” Levy said via email. “Stan (Beebe) caught four of the five fish we weighed, including the big fish (2.24 pounds). That one was retrieved mid-morning on a stickbait. He also fished jigs while I cast jigs all day.”
Their big fish accounted for $405 of their runner-up (7.74 pounds) winnings total of $1,260.
The team did not enter the November tournament and placed 12th in the December event.
American Bass Pacific Region Top 10, Number of Fish, Weight, Winnings
1. Jason Letterman, Scott Mullins, Salinas, 5, 7.89 pounds, $3,848; 2. Stanley Beebe, San Luis Obispo, Andrew Levy, Grover Beach, 5, 7.74 pounds, $1,260; 3. Gene Gray, Atascadero, Jay Short, Templeton, 5, 7.41 pounds, $787; 4. John White, San Luis Obispo, Fred Ledesma, Soledad, 5, 7.40 pounds, $658; 5, Darrin Bishop, Paso Robles, Dean Miller, Tulare, 5, 7.22 pounds, $200; 6. Mike Maddux, Matt Quaresma, Arroyo Grande, 5, 7.06 pounds, $375; 7. Randy & Mason McAbee, Bakersfield, 5, 7.00 pounds; 8. Mark Hinson, Joseph Reggio, San Luis Obispo, 5, 6.93 pounds, $135; 9. Brian Duncan, August Kinney, Santa Maria, 5, 6.86 pounds, $162; 10. Aaron Quarles, Nipomo, Steven Goodman, San Luis Obispo, 5, 6.76 pounds.
1st Big Fish, 2.24 pounds, Beebe & Levy, $405; 2nd Big Fish, 2.20 pounds, Letterman & Mullins, $243; 3rd Big Fish, 1.80 pounds, Duncan & Kinney. $162.
Nacimiento Lake was the scene for the traditional Hangover Bass Tournament on New Year’s Day. The event’s title is a misnomer as use of alcohol during competition is forbidden.
Newcomers Clayton Esliek and Clark Polson of Gilroy bested 28 other teams. They had a five-fish limit of 8.60 pounds that paid $570.
Runners-up Mitch and Britany Wasley of Paso Robles had the big fish (3.6 pounds) that paid $300.
Halibut fishing trips are being offered beginning Saturday. Cost for the 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. trips is $69. Call 772-1222 or go to www.virgs.com for reservations.
Whale watching trips from 10 a.m. to noon are scheduled for Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
During the 2013 season, anglers aboard Virg’s boats caught 4,978 lingcod.
Port San Luis Boatyard
Forty-seven boats were launched Dec. 30- 31, the final two days of the rockcod fishing season. Sixty-five lingcod were caught, but none were weighed so there was no Whopper of the Week winner.
Owner Marty Codorniz noted there is an abundance of squid offshore. That might just tweak the interest of white seabass anglers.
Caught by 22 customers on two crab and sanddab trips last weekend were136 sanddabs, 101 dungeness crabs, one rock crab, two sardines and 22 croakers.
Anglers caught 3,796 lingcod during the 2013 season.
Combination crab and sanddab trips are being offered Fridays and Saturday through the month of January. The 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. trips cost $60 for adults, $50 for those 12 and under.
Whale watching and nature trips depart at 9 a.m. and return at 11 a.m. on Sundays. Cost is $35 for adults and $25 for children age 12 and under.
For reservations and more information call 595-7200 or go to www.patriotsportfishing.com.
Bank fishermen are catching catfish. Dan Walden, his father, Paul, and his wife, Cindi, all caught catfish Saturday. Dan’s was an 8-pound, 3-ounce fish, while Paul and Cindi both had 4-pounders. All were caught on anchovies. Heritage Ranch reporter Dave Rymal advised spotted bass are biting on dartheads armed with plastic worms.
J. Randy Van Otterloo reported from the marina that a Dec. 23 CDFW 4,000-pound trout plant (6,400 fish) has sparked fishing activity. Anglers are catching trout on rainbow PowerBait and nightcrawlers. Brock and Clyde Wilson reeled in a 3 7-8-pound bass with a spinnerbait at Vista Lago on Jan. 1. Santa Maria’s Alex and Evan Hamilton caught a stringer of trout anchored by a 2-pounder. They were fishing in Cottonwood Cove.
Santa Margarita Lake
After being closed for two weeks, the marina reopened Wednesday.
Marina manager Ken Hemer said another 4,000-pound fish plant from the Calaveras Trout Farm was due Thursday.
“This will restore the trout bite which had slowed last week,” Hemer said.
Flat lining lures such as Rapala’s, Yo-Zuri’s, as well as Kastmasters, Super Dupers and Krocodiles all were producing last week. Best locations are mouth of Johnson Bay, the dam and between Bobcat and Santa Cruz Point.