Christopher Smith

Boyd Duckett Wins Oneida With Smallmouth and Largemouth

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As the sun sets on another BASS Elite tournament season and all the Bass boats are heading home we find out that Boyd Duckett won the BASS Elite Series Oneida Lake with a combination of smallmouth and largemouth bass on August 26,2012. This win earns him $100,000 and a ticket to ride in the 2013 Bassmaster Classic.

Boyd Duckett Wins Oneida With Smallmouth and Largemouth Bass

The quantity of smallmouth bass that were caught outnumbered the largemouths but the largemouth bass provided that extra weight he needed to propel him to first place. Randy Howell was the second place finisher.

Duckett approached Oneida as a Classic quest. He started slowly — 27th on Day One, with a middle-of-the-pack catch of 13-11. But on Day Two, he produced a whopping 17-1 sack and shot to second place. He kept second place on the third day, even though his weight was 14-0. On the final day, he pulled another huge sack out of Oneida — 17-0 — and surged past Howell. The score was Duckett, 62 pounds, 6 ounces to Howell’s 62 pounds even.

Oneida is 20-some miles long and miles wide in spots, but Duckett never saw much of it during the Ramada Championship. He found a sweet mix of largemouth and smallmouth bass in Maple Bay, and milked it for every bass he brought to the scales over four days.

He happened on the spot while sitting on shore during practice. He and Kelly Jordon, sharing a house on Maple Bay, were sitting at a picnic table and noticed roily water offshore.

“The fish were about 400 yards out, and we couldn’t quite see what they were — we thought maybe perch — but they turned out to be smallmouth,” he said. “And that’s how I found my fish.”

They held up all week. One area was more of a largemouth spot. There he mostly flipped a 3-inch Berkley Chigger Craw in green pumpkin or cinnamon, or a ChatterBait or Lucky Craft Gunfish topwater. When he saw smallmouth schooling, he’d troll to them, usually picking up his 4-inch blue-herring Berkley Hollow Belly swimbait rigged on a 1/8-ounce Buckeye J-Will swimbait head.

Lucky Craft Gunfish 95-mm Bait     On Sunday, the Hollow Belly happened to produce a 4-3 largemouth (the biggest fish brought to the scales that day). That catch, said Duckett, was the turning point.

“I felt then I had a really good chance,” he said.

He led Duckett going into the final round by 2 pounds, 6 ounces. But Sunday he managed only four bass — one shy of a limit — and fell 6 ounces behind

Howell’s primary lures were a Strike King Series 5 that produced a 3-11 largemouth on Sunday, his largest of the day. He also used a NetBait BK Swimmer, rotating pearl-white or albino on a 1/2-ounce Do-It Mold swimbait head, and a 1-ounce Monster Grass jig by Lunker Lure with a Kinami Baits Psycho Dad crawfish trailer.

He also relied on a Pop-R topwater and Super Spook. Source

A few small points here. Note that the smallmouth bass were schooling and difficult for many of the anglers to find because they tend to roam the lake looking for food. Largemouth bass tend to hold to cover and more predictable locations.

 Oneida Lake Standings

 PLACE             NAME              FISH        TOTAL WEIGHT

     1                 Boyd Duckett        20                 62- 6

     2                Randy Howell        19                 62- 0

     3                Scott Rook              20                60- 7

     4             Takahiro Omori       20               57- 4

     5             Ott DeFoe                  20               56-14

     6             Brent Chapman       20               56-10

     7             Nate Wellman          20               56- 7

     8             Jason Quinn             20               55-10

     9             Terry Scroggins     19                52-12

    10            John Crews             18               49- 8 Source

I can’t imagine the feeling that Randy Howell has right now. He was only able to catch 4 keepers today and came up only 6 ounces short of overtaking Duckett.  If Duckett hadn’t caught the combination of large and smallmouth bass, Howell would have been the victor at Oneida.

Head on over to the Bassmaster web site to catch some great photos of the tounament. For continued smallmouth news, tips and videos, be sure to subscribe to our newsletter!

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