LOREAUVILLE — The heat was on and so were Marlin Hebert and Jason Jones who recorded a remarkable mid-summer catch in Lake Fausse Pointe — Sandy Cove, no less — on July 20.
Hebert and Jones, both of New Iberia, tattooed heavy bass after heavy bass in a Coteau Bass Hustlers tournament to the tune of 14.88 pounds, a weight more commonly associated with springtime catches in the large cove between Coon Slough and Peche Coulee. They ran away from the six-boat field, easily, with the five bass they put on the scale back at Marsh Field Boat Landing.
“One guy (bass club member) asked what we had. We told him 15 pounds. He said, ’Fifteen ounces?’ We said, ‘No, 15 pounds,’ ” Hebert said.
No one can recollect a 3-pound average like that during late July in the lake in the past four decades. Unseasonably high water, especially after the passage of Tropical Storm Barry, has kept the bass and the bass fishermen in Sandy Cove many weeks after the spawning ground usually plays out because of the heat and low water, normally, say, in late May or, at the latest, early June.
And it was a scorcher that Saturday.
“We had a good time and it was hot. They didn’t have a whole lot of breeze,” Hebert said
His 4.74-pound bass was the tournament’s lunker bass. He was especially proud of that big’un.
Hebert and Jones targeted scattered grass beds about 30 or 40 yards away from the main grass beds, he said. They were rewarded early.
Jones hooked and boated the first bass of the day right away on a buzz bait, Hebert said. They caught two more smaller bass on topwaters.
“After that, most of the other fish came off a June bug Senko. The big bass came off a black/blue swim bait,” he said, remembering that tussle a few hours after the safe daylight start of the bass club tournament.
“When she bit the swim bait, and I set the hook, it was solid. I said, ‘Oh, Jason, get the net! I got a good one,’ ” he said.
Hebert, 51-year-old install manager for Butcher Air Conditioning, had no trouble getting the bass to the boat and the waiting landing net. The swim bait was attached to 65-pound test braided line.
“Once we got it in the boat, we were pumped up, all excited,” he said.
“I caught the big fish around 8 o’clock. By 8:30 we had our five fish. We culled twice” after that, he said.
Jones caught two of their 3-pound class bass on the way to the win, he said.
Brandon Sellers and his guest, Mason, were a distant second with a limit weighing 9.75 pounds. Joey Trahan and Jacob Chatagnier finished third with five bass weighing 7.83 pounds.
Hebert closed the gap in the point standings on Trahan, who still leads the pack with 613 points. Hebert, who cashed in for the fifth time this year, has 611.
“He’s got me by two points. I’m going to pass him up,” Hebert said with a chuckle about his long-time friend.
“I’ve been giving him a hard time. We grew up together since we were itty bitty, so it’s fun.”