Ron Nelson Takes the Lead Heading Into Final Day of FLW Tour Stop on Lake Chickamauga
(flwtour.com) DAYTON, Tenn. (May 4, 2019) – FLW Tour rookie Ron Nelson of Berrien Spring, Michigan, caught four big largemouth late in the day Saturday to anchor his 25-pound, 15-ounce limit and jump to the top of the leaderboard after Day Three of the FLW Tour at Lake Chickamauga presented by Evinrude in Dayton, Tennessee. Nelson’s five-bass limit was one of just four brought to the scale Saturday that weighed in excess of 20 pounds, telling when you consider that the lake had pumped out 19, 20+ pound limits in the first two days of competition.
Nelson (15 bass, 65-0) will now bring a 14-ounce lead over second-place angler Yamamoto Baits pro Matt Greenblatt of Port St. Lucie, Florida, (15 bass, 64-2) – who led the tournament after Day Two – into Championship Sunday. Also in striking distance in third place, is Berkley pro John Cox of DeBary, Florida, (15 bass, 62-9), local favorite Buddy Gross of Chickamauga, Georgia, (15 bass, 62-2) and Polaris pro David Dudley of Lynchburg, Virginia, (15 bass, 60-4).
“I feel honored to be here,” said Nelson, who, although a Tour rookie, has three career tournament wins in Costa FLW Series competition. “I had no idea that I had 25 pounds. I had a real slow day and just stuck with it and stuck with it and it started snowballing real quick at the end of the day.
“I’d been running around like Buddy (Gross), burning gas,” Nelson continued. “I was way down the lake and (FLW cameraman) Jody (White) showed up around 1:30 or 2. I caught a big one and was going to leave, then I caught another big one. So I’m getting ready to leave, then I catch another big one. Then I left and came back up the lake and I caught another big one up here. It was truly a blessing.”
Nelson’s four late-in-the-day largemouth came from similar water, but his last kicker came on a different bait. Nelson declined to mention any specifics, but did say that he was catching fish on “a couple of different baits.”
“I’m excited, but I don’t want to get too far ahead of myself,” Nelson said. “Yesterday I dropped the ball and only had 14 pounds. I just don’t know what will happen tomorrow. I may go out and catch 12 pounds, or I could catch 35. I’m just going to keep an open mind and work hard all day. I’ll be looking for a big bag tomorrow.”
The top 10 pros advancing to the final day of competition Sunday on Lake Chickamauga are:
1st: Ron Nelson, Berrien Springs, Mich., 15 bass, 65-0
2nd: Yamamoto Baits pro Matt Greenblatt, Port St. Lucie, Fla., 15 bass, 64-2
3rd: Berkley pro John Cox, DeBary, Fla., 15 bass, 62-9
4th: Buddy Gross, Chickamauga, Ga., 15 bass, 62-2
5th: Polaris pro David Dudley, Lynchburg, Va., 15 bass, 60-4
6th: Alex Davis, Albertville, Ala., 15 bass, 58-2
7th: Ramie Colson Jr., Cadiz, Ky., 15 bass, 57-0
8th: Lowrance pro Austin Felix, Eden Prairie, Minn., 15 bass, 55-5
9th: Strike King pro Jared McMillan, Belle Glade, Fla., 15 bass, 55-3
10th: David Williams, Maiden, N.C., 15 bass, 54-2