from FLW Outdoors.
Mark Rose tried to win an endurance race this week at Lake Ouachita, but the cool, cloudy weather experienced on days one and three put him behind the 8-ball. Although he steadily climbed the leaderboard each day, Rose ultimately finished third with a total weight of 50 pounds, 15 ounces. The Marion, Ark., pro’s final-day stringer weighed 9 pounds, 10 ounces.
Rose fished offshore points and channel swings near the intersection of the main lake and the river and said most of his fish came from about 17 feet. Like Martin, the presence of big shad was key for the National Guard pro.
While Martin caught several 4- and 5-pounders, getting big bites was tougher for Rose. In fact, his biggest bass Sunday came from shallow water and fell prey to a Strike King Pro Model buzzbait.
When he was offshore, the Pickwick Lake champion employed a variety of offshore lures including crankbaits, spoons, Carolina rigs, swimbaits and drop-shots. He said his key to the bigger fish was the Strike King Shadalicious swimbait, which he rigged with a 1/2-ounce jighead.
“I was fishing my strengths, so I’m content,” he said. “If we would have had different conditions, it might have made a difference.”
Rose claimed $60,000 for third and finished the year with four consecutive top-10s.
“Momentum is everything in this sport, and I’m just comfortable and confident out there right now.”