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Chickamauga's Gross wins Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division event on Lake Seminole

Published By OutdoorsFIRST Media
Published March 6, 2017

FLW Tour pro Buddy Gross of Chickamauga, Georgia, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 23 pounds, 7 ounces, Saturday to claim top honors at the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division tournament on Lake Seminole presented by Mud Hole Custom Tackle. Gross' three-day total of 15 bass weighing 64 pounds, 11 ounces, was enough to earn him $52,200.

"I'm feeling really great right now," said Gross, who also logged a top-10 finish at the Series Southeastern Division opener on Lake Okeechobee in January. "This is an awesome lake and I've had a great time on it this week. The Lord has really blessed me."

Gross said he caught the majority of his bass in Spring Creek. He said his area revolved around a unique turn in the creek channel that acted as a highway for bass to travel to shallow spawning flats.

"Every fish I weighed in came off that 100-yard stretch," said Gross. "It was like a pocket in the deep grass line that led straight to the spawning flats and there was timber in the middle of it. The grass down the sides was about 14- or 15-feet tall and it was green and healthy."

Gross said he used two baits to catch his fish - a Tennessee Shad-colored Zoom Swimmer Paddle Tail Swimbait, and a white Zoom Magnum Super Fluke with a Tennessee River Tremor Head. He said he each lure was equally productive in catching a total of 17 keepers throughout the event.

"I'd throw the Swimmer up over the grass early on in the day, and then I'd take the fluke and slow roll it through the timber to catch suspended fish in the afternoon," said Gross.

Though his bass made subtle moves throughout the week, Gross was still able to put together the weight he needed to win.

"On Thursday they were wadded up tight, and yesterday they were scattered," said Gross. "They were in two different spots today, but close together. It was just one of those textbook kinds of areas that you dream about."

The top 10 pros on Lake Seminole were:

1st:          Buddy Gross, Chickamauga, Ga., 15 bass, 64-11, $52,200

2nd:         Bryan Thrift, Shelby, N.C., 15 bass, 58-9, $21,600

3rd:          Clint Brown, Bainbridge, Ga., 15 bass, 56-5, $15,000

4th:          Rodger Beaver, Dawson, Ga., 15 bass, 48-13, $13,000

5th:          Matt Baty, Bainbridge, Ga., 14 bass, 47-1, $12,000

6th:          Chad Prough, Chipley, Fla., 14 bass, 43-11, $9,500

7th:          Bradford Beavers, Ridgeville, S.C., 15 bass, 42-14, $8,200

8th:          Barry Wilson, Birmingham, Ala., 13 bass, 39-13, $7,200

9th:          Randy Haynes, Counce, Tenn., 11 bass, 39-5, $6,200

10th:        Nic Jeter, Bainbridge, Ga., 12 bass, 37-12, $4,600

A complete list of results can be found at FLWFishing.com.