Hite hangs tight on Okeechobee
08.Feb.2014 by Kyle Wood
CLEWISTON, Fla. – The first two days of competition on Lake Okeechobee saw numerous bags of 20-plus pounds brought in to the scales. Today, however, seemed to reflect more of traditional Saturday on the Big O where the fish go into hiding from the amount of pressure the receive each weekend. Despite lower catches, Brett Hite still clings to what is now a 12-pound, 3-ounce lead heading into the final day.
“The fishing is really day to day out here,” said the Phoenix, Ariz., resident. “It’s hard to say when the fish will bite or won’t. We had about the same conditions as the first day, so I thought they would bite a lot better.”
Hite has been mentioning all week that he has two patterns he could rely on depending on the conditions. His primary pattern has carried him so far, but today he had to fall back to plan B.
“I fished my main area all morning until about 11 o’clock and had one decent fish and three little ones,” Hite explained. “I got a feeling today that something wasn’t right and when that happens it helps to have something to fall back on, luckily I did. I had a voice in my head that told me to change. I wasn’t seeing the size or numbers from the primary patter so I made the change.”
When an angler experiences being in the “groove” everything falls into place for them. It is almost as if they can do no wrong. Hite has been to that level before back in 2008 when he won his first Walmart FLW Tour event on Lake Toho by over 20 pounds. He then headed west to fish another tour-level event on the California Delta where he caught over 100 pounds of bass to claim back-to-back titles. The way Hite is fishing this week eerily resembles his performance from then.
“Fishing my backup pattern wasn’t what I wanted to do today but it worked out. I am just so comfortable out there and know what I want to do and how I want to catch them that I feel right.”
Hite continues to remain quiet about his two patterns but says that they are stark contrasts to each other. His main pattern brought bags of 34-15 and 23-8 from days one and two, respectively, while today saw his weight drop to 15-12. His three-day total stands at 74-3 as he looks to wrap up his second FLW Tour victory tomorrow.
“Tomorrow I still plan to start on my main primary spot. The sunny and slick conditions out there hurt me today. I know there are fish in that area still – lots of them – but they just didn’t want to bite today. If I don’t like what I’m seeing from there I will go back to my secondary pattern if I feel that’s what I need to do.”