Slidell residents, Jacob Leininger and Jeff Rogers, walked away victors of the IFA Redfish Tour event after their two-fish limit weighed in at a total of 17.67 pounds. For their efforts, the duo won themselves a fully rigged RB190 Ranger boat. This first place prize is valued at a whopping $26,800, but the anglers had to work hard for their success due to the high winds they had to battle. Since the anglers also took advantage of the Anglers Advantage contingency program, their total winnings ended up at $33,952. According to Leininger the duo had a great time, despite grinding all day. As part of their winning strategy the two fished ponds with spoons and Berkley Gulp! in the Delacroix area.
Florida residents, Randy Lane of Ocklawaha, and Ryan Lane of Inverness were hot on the heels of the winners, but had to settle for a close second place. The catch for this father-and-son team weighed in at 17.49 pounds, but according to Ryan the pair had a ball in Louisiana. Ryan also mentioned that in Louisiana you can catch up to 50 fish a day whereas in Florida a good day would be catching five fish. Both team members enjoy the competitions offered by the IFA and has already made the long trip from Florida three times before to participate. “In the morning it was pretty rough” said Ryan Lane. “By noon, the sun came out and we could see well. It was still windy and the boat was blowing all over the place. You got to work with the wind and it’s not too bad.” Using spoons and Berkley Gulp! jigs the pair fished a few ponds as well as broken marsh. According to Ryan the redfish are able to see the silver spoons from much further away than with regular soft plastics. With a total catch of between 30 and 40 redfish, the anglers were pleased with their results. Second place earned the anglers a total of $6,046, which included the $100 PENN Reels award as well as the $500 Berkley Big Fish award for the fact that they caught a 9.21-pound redfish on Berkley Gulp!
Third place in the competition went to Barbara Scopelitis who hails from Corpus Christi and Starr Boykin, a Dauphin Island, Alabama resident. The duo brought 17.39 to the scales which won them $3,629. Their tactic for the day was to drift-fish with Berkley Gulp! on ponds that were about 20 miles from the launch.
June 9-10 marks the next stop for the IFA Redfish Tour where St. Bernard Parrish, Louisiana will play host to two IFA Redfish Open events. qualify for the 2017 IFA Redfish Tour Championship teams must compete in at least two regular-season events. The Top 10 results for the IFA Redfish Tour - Louisana Division is as follows:
Jacob Leininger/Jeff Rogers - 17.67 .lbs
Randy Lane/Ryan Lane - 17.49 .lbs
Starr Boykin/Barbara Scopelitis - 17.39 .lbs
Trevor Taylor/Jon Morris - 17.01 .lbs
Steve Ward/Matt Eschan - 16.88 .lbs
Richard Ziegler/Richard Ziegler Sr. - 16.84 .lbs
Eddie Dufrene/Luke Landry - 16.73 .lbs
Paul Dufrene/ Nicky Savoie - 16.70 .lbs
David Naron/Steve Jones - 16.60 .lbs
Mike Taylor/John Roberts - 16.59 .lbs
IFA Kayak Fishing Tour
The first 2017 regular-season event for the Louisiana Division of the IFA Kayak Fishing Tour, presented by Hobie Fishing, took place the day after the Redfish tour. Once again anglers had to contend with high winds, many of who reported having a tough day out on the water. However, this didn’t prevent Brandon Barton from Pensacola, Florida, to take first place. He measured a combined limit of 51.25 inches, which was enough to bag him his first IFA Kayak event win. His strategy of fishing a jerkbait around rocks while also targeting reds in a marsh with top-waiter baits saw him walk away with the first place price of $1,500. In addition, he also won a Power-Pole Micro anchor, along with an extra $520 in Anglers Advantage cash.
Kalon Johnson from Thibodau, Louisiana was the second-place finisher for the day with his combined total of 46.25 inches. Johnson, who won $1,000, said that the rough conditions caused him to fish a lot more slowly, but that he is pleased with his results given the conditions. His strategy was to throw spoons and top-waters over grass flats approximately two miles from the Hopedale area.
Third for the day went to Brendan Bayard, who already has numerous IFA Kayak Tour wins under his belt. he won $485 for his efforts, which included cycling through a variety of lures on confidence spots with top-water baits and softbaits. Matthew Vann, who finished in fifth place, took home the $100 Berkley Big Trout award along with $300 credit from PENN Reels. This was all thanks to his speckled sea trout, which measured in at 23.50 inches. Alex Stephens, with his 29.50 inch redfish, achieved eighth place and won the $100 Berkley Big Redfish award.
The IFA Kayak Tour will make its next stop on August 6 in Houma, Louisiana. To qualify for the 2017 IFA Kayak Tour Championship, anglers must enter at least a minimum of two events and compete in at least one event. The top 10 results for the IFA Kayak Tour - Louisiana Division is as follows:
Brandon Barton - 51.25 inches
Kalon Johnson - 46.25 inches
Brendan Bayard - 44.75 inches
Shane Coleman - 44.25 inches
Matthew Vann - 42.25 inches
Owen Caraway - 39.75 inches
Ryan McNeal - 39.50 inches
Alex Stephens - 29.50 inches
Jeffery Oliver - 27.75 inches
Scott Bienvenu - 27.25 inches