2019 Georgia State Kayak Bass Fishing Championship Results
Alford brings the state championship back to Rome.
For the second time in its 4-year history, the title of “Georgia State Kayak Bass Fishing Champion” is held by an angler from Rome. This year’s two-day event was hosted by Chattahoochee Kayak Anglers Oct. 12-13 on West Point Lake and the Chattahoochee River below the West Point dam. After two tough days of fishing, Jason Alford joined 2017 champion Clint Henderson in bringing the title to the kayak fishing “Titletown” of Georgia—Rome.
This year’s event mixed up the format some from the last couple of years, moving the lake day to Saturday and the river day to Sunday. Despite open water from the dam north to the Snake Creek Access, West Point Lake held true to its reputation as a challenging fishery for patterning big fish.
Of the 29 anglers who fished this year’s championship, 24 were able to turn in a full five-fish stringer after the first day, but stringer sizes were on the smaller side, with Will Clement’s 78.0-inch stringer putting him in first after Day One. Jason Alford was not far off the pace in second with 76.25 inches. Third after day one was Landon Anderson, who had the big bass of the day with 20.75 inches, with 73.25 total inches. Adam Cawley (73.0 inches) and Jason Matthews (72.0 inches) rounded out the first day’s top five.
The river day gave anglers a chance to launch from the dam to the Idle Hour boat ramp on the north end of Lake Harding. With dropping temperatures and bass fattening up on shad, expectations were high that there would be several 100-plus inch stringers turned in for Day Two. With less that 22 inches separating the 24 anglers who limited on Saturday, most all anglers launched Sunday with a real shot at winning. Despite great expectations, the river wasn’t putting up the big fish anglers were seeking. Only two anglers broke 90.0 inches, and no one broke the 100-inch mark anglers were targeting.
Jason Matthews turned in an 83.0-inch stringer, with a Day Two big-bass-winning 21.25-inch largemouth to hold on to fifth place for the event. Day One leader Will Clements turned in a solid 81.0-inch stringer on Day Two, not enough for the win, but keeping him inside the top five with a fourth-place finish and a check. Local stick Jamie Dabbs put 88.25 inches on the board Sunday to jump from seventh to third.
The second-place finisher put up 90.0 inches on Sunday, good enough to jump from eighth on Day One to second at the end of Day Two. I had the pleasure of watching him catch a couple of his scoring fish, and this angler just plain fished hard. I don’t know that I’ve ever seen anyone work a single piece of cover the way Keith “Beef” Agan did that Sunday. He caught two of his scoring fish off that cover, and when I caught up with him after the event, he thanked me. It seems I was sitting on the spot he wanted to fish, and he fished that other spot as a result. The two fish he caught there helped him to a 90.0-inch stringer for the day and a second-place finish for the event.
And then there was one. One angler who just plain stepped out in front of the field and took the win.
Following on his second-place standing from Day One, Jason Alford put on a clinic on the river, bringing in a five-fish stringer of 95.5 inches. He scored four of his fish from one stretch, then with time fading in the event, packed up and moved to another stretch, culling one more time and locking in the win and title of State Champion. I’ll have more from Jason, including a deep dive into his fishing weekend in my next blog post.
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