The Bergen Bassmasters held their third points event of the season on June 19th at Copake Lake, New York. A cold front that blew in on Friday had evening temperatures in the low fifties and the water temperature had dropped nearly 5 degrees in 2 days.
One of the club's top non-boaters, Frank Freguletti, captured his 4th regular tournament victory. Frank landed a huge 5 pound 15 ounce post spawn bass that nearly broke the 6 pound lunker pool. That fish anchored his total catch of 14 pounds 13 ounces and is the largest fish caught in a club tournament year to date. Frank used a variety of baits including a buzzbait, and a 4" power worm but the big fish was caught on a Jersey Rigg around 1:30 in the afternoon.
Moving into first place overall year-to-date by placing second at Copake was veteran, Greg Trass. Greg landed more than three limits of bass throughout the day culling up to his total of 11 pounds 10 ounces. Greg also used a variety of baits including a spider jig in 14' of water, a Jersey Rigg skipped around docks, and a 4" power worm. He caught his smallmouth deep, as could be expected, and his largemouth were caught much shallower.
Once again returning to the top three was club president, Steve Rusert who placed third. Steve won the last event held on Copake Lake back in 1997 and used the same techniques to land a 10 pound 8 ounce limit. Steve has confidence fishing shallow water with Jersey Riggs and that pattern brought Steve back up in the year-to-date standings.
Placing fourth was Pat VanWettering with a limit of bass weighting 8 pounds 14 ounces. Pat had an excellent practice day on Friday landing a quick limit on spinnerbaits, however, that spinnerbait bite was off during the tournament. Switching to Jersey Riggs and worms, Pat managed to land 3 largemouth in the weeds and 2 smallies along the outside weed edge.
Jim Hallihan rebounded by claiming a fifth place finish with his limit weighing a total of 8 pounds 7 ounces. Without pre-fishing, Jim relied on his knowledge from two years ago to bag 4 largemouth and 1 smallmouth for his fish top five finish of the season.
The club as a whole weighed in 83 bass and released 80 alive back into the laken for a 96% release rate. Fifty one largemouth and 32 smallmouth combined for a total weight of 152 pounds 7 ounces and 31 out of 34 anglers brought fish to the scales. The Copake event shook up the year-to-date standings. Although the top eight anglers remained the same, their places were switched around leaving Greg Trass first overall as the top boater and Frank Freguletti has the lead as the top non-boater. In fact, three of the top 8 anglers are non-boaters. Rich Kalanz, with a strong finish of 11th place at Copake has moved into a tie with John Hart for the Rookie of the year title. Next up, the Connecticut River. The event will be the first time for many of the Bergen members and the usually tough river will undoubtedly shake up the standings again.