LOREAUVILLE — High winds. High water. High hopes.
New Iberian Brad Romero had the answer Wednesday at Lake Fausse Pointe. Romero and Aaron Thibodeaux solved the challenge -- by the hardest, as they say -- to win the Wednesday Night Hawg Fights Bass Tournament Series tournament out of Marsh Field Boat Landing.
Their three-bass limit weighed an unbeatable 7.94 pounds worth $563.
Romero, riding in his Bullet bass boat, started the evening the way every bass angler would like. The 27-year-old outdoorsman was in the mix with many of the others in the 25-boat field hunkering down in Sandy Cove.
“Basically, the wind was blowing like hell. It was my first cast. I caught about a 5 in the area the day before,” he said about the 4.29-pound bass he boated right off the bat Wednesday.
He had stopped after the boat ride from the boat landing about 100 to 200 yards short of the exact spot he wanted to fish because another boat was there. That worked out OK for Romero and Thibodeaux.
Romero continued chunking a homemade soft plastic bait concocted of old soft plastics by Thibodeaux.
“I missed another one. I couldn’t catch up with it in the wind. The wind was so bad I didn’t even feel the fish. I ran back to where I was Saturday. I hooked another one and had him come off. I didn’t think we’d get three fish,” he said.
Then he hooked and boated a small keeper, fished about 30 more minutes before catching a nice-sized keeper that put them over the top.
Romero decided to leave early to return for the 8 p.m. weigh-in because he had heard some clanking under the hood of the outboard motor the past few outings. They got as far as Bird Island Chute when one of the cylinders rattled and shut down, Thibodeaux and their bass caught a ride with another boat and a Good Samaritans Wilfred Gary and Corey Romero towed the broken-down Bullet back to Marsh Field Boat Landing.
The winners finished ahead of John Gordon, whose limit weighed 7.57 pounds for $338. Mike Sinitiere and Mike O’Brien were third with three bass weighing 6.33 pounds worth $225.
Veteran St. Martinville bass anglers Carroll Delahoussaye and Danny Bulliard boasted the biggest bass of the evening, a 4.30-pounder that netted $125. That big bass was a hair, er, scale, heavier than the 4.29-pounder brought in by Romero and Thibodeaux.
“It feels like another day. It’s not like it’s my first time,” Romero said about the victory.
He believes that first bass was one he caught while prefishing Tuesday. He compared photos from Tuesday and Wednesday.
“I think it was the same fish. I’m pretty sure I caught it the day before. It’s pretty crazy. I’ve done that before,” he said.
Romero’s answer to the high wind, the key to getting bites, was simple.
“I was using a heavy (worm) weight, you know, in the wind,” he said, noting he had that homemade cross between a Sweet Beaver-style bait and a crawfish imitation under a 1-ounce weight.
Thibodeaux’s soft plastic creation also probably was a little larger than other soft plastics being offered that evening. Color? Romero had no idea but knows they worked well while both prefished on Sunday.
“I don’t know where he got that mold. I told him to make some more,” he said. “They’re old, chewed up, cut up baits, a mix of some june bug, black and blue (etc.).”
Those off-the-wall soft plastics and the heavier weight made the difference.