An Oklahoma showdown awaits the NPFL anglers

The NPFL is setting up shop on Lake Eufaula in Oklahoma for Stop #5 of the 2023 Season.

Story by Justin Brouillard | Photos by Tanner & Travis Lyons

The fifth stop of the National Professional Fishing League brings the anglers and their families to Oklahoma for a three-day shootout on a newer lake to professional bass fishing. Lake Eufaula plays host to the NPFL anglers beginning on Thursday, September 28th, and running through Saturday, September 30th.

Local NPFL angler Matt Looney, who grew up fishing Lake Eufaula, has mixed feelings about the upcoming National Professional Fishing League (NPFL) event on one of his home bodies of water. Unfortunately, due to work commitments, Looney is unable to fish.

“I grew up on this lake and spent 100 days a year for five years learning how to fish on Eufaula,” said Looney. “I’m very bummed that work has kept me away from two events this season, like Santee and this one, but I have the flexibility with work to fish these NPFL events when the dates work, and it just didn’t line up on the schedule great for this season.”

Despite his absence from the competition, Looney couldn’t help but share his insights on the lake’s dynamics. “I think it can be a tough lake this time of the year due to the fish transitioning, but there are a few things going on out here now that could be good if someone figures out a few of the deals. There are also some little sneaky things going on around boat docks that could play,” he added.

Looney is looking forward to following along this week as both a competitor but also a fan. Eufaula is the largest lake in Oklahoma and he is excited to see how it unfolds as there are several local anglers in the field with the majority of the anglers having never fished Eufaula.

“The town is investing in getting some bigger trails, and it’s great to see an uptick in pro events here. Lake Eufaula has it all – spotted bass, smallmouth, and largemouth bass,” said Looney. “I am interested to see what locals will do and how those guys with no history here will fare,” he stated. “Should be a great event, and the guys who figure it out should be averaging 17-18 a day for the win.”

The Race for the Progressive AOY

It’s been a head-to-head battle between current leader Todd Goade and Timmy Reams in second place all year and both anglers have actually fished how they wanted down the stretch. The Progressive AOY leader, Goade, spent some time before the off limits doing some looking around on Eufaula and is working on expanding on that time during the official practice period.

“It is tough out here but I am getting some bites so far,” said Goade. “Like I have tried to do all season, I am going to fish how I am comfortable and mix in a spinning rod as needed. My main deal is a three tonged approach – docks, brush and topwater, and in no particular order.”

So far throughout practice, Goade has found a few areas he thinks will get some bites. Whatever the size fish might be is yet to be seen as he has hardly set the hook and landed many fish. He is shooting for a five fish limit each day to put him where he wants to be in the tournament as well as the Progressive Angler of the Year race going into the Lake Lanier.

“If I can catch five keepers, those 14-inchers weight almost two-pounds and that is a solid goal,” he added. “I fished my strengths in pre-practice and found some things that still seem to be a player. I love fishing docks, and I hopefully can catch a few fish this week doing that, and I found some “fall” looking areas that I will be expanding on this week.”

In second place, Timmy Reams is also planning on keeping on keeping on. Like Goade, he has focused on fishing his strengths all season and there is no reason to stop now. Even with minimal experience in Oklahoma, Reams plans on “covering water and making it work.”

“I am getting a lot of bites, which is good, but the size I am not sure about as I have hardly hooked anything,” said Reams. “I am looking forward to this week; I love fishing these tough events and my goal is another top five. I am comfortable doing my thing and Eufaula sets up for me well.”

How to Watch

Tune in daily from September 28 through 30 to watch daily action from Lake Eufaula, with Live Coverage here and streamed exclusively by PHYX TV beginning on Friday. 

Follow along and watch the daily LIVE Leaderboard, LIVE Blog, and on-the-water photo galleries and blogs of the anglers on Eufaula. 

Under the Go Live Tab, choose LIVE Broadcast or check out the real-time leaderboard on the Weigh Live Tracker with estimated weights entered by the anglers on the water and join us for the LIVE Weigh-ins, here! 

Check out the results from Saginaw Bay, here!

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