Feb. 9, 2013
/PRNewswire/ -- The
fishing conditions toughened on Saturday and a strong northeast wind drastically affected tournament weights on day three of the
Walmart FLW Tour on Lake Okeechobee presented by Mercury
. Although he could not match his previous catch of 23 pounds from each of the past two days, pro
Drew Benton of Panama City, Fla.
, still weighed enough to grab the lead heading into the final round of the four-day event that has competitors casting for a top cash award of up to
Link to photo of pro leader Drew Benton
Benton brought a five-bass limit to the scales totaling 15 pounds, 3 ounces, giving him a three-day total of 15 bass for 62 pounds, 3 ounces. He now holds a slim 1-pound lead over day 2 leader
, who weighed in three bass for 7 pounds, giving him a three-day total of 13 bass for 61 pounds, 3 ounces.
"I thought that I had caught enough to keep it close today," said Benton who is fishing his rookie season as a pro on the FLW Tour. "I was very surprised that it was enough to take the lead.
"I made a long run south to start the day, and my first area was trashed," Benton continued. "It was very windy and rough -- the FLW camera boat even turned around. I knew within five minutes of pulling up that it wasn't working. I was able to catch a couple of small keepers, but I decided that I needed to make the 25 mile run up north."
Benton was able to boat a 5-pounder that he had located Friday while checking new areas. He stayed in that same area today and said he caught an estimated 25 keepers.