Cook Takes Day One Lead at Pickwick Lake

Drew Cook brings almost 23 pounds to the stage to lead the charge after day one on Pickwick Lake.

Story by Justin Brouillard | Photos by Tanner & Travis Lyons

Setting the pace on day one, Drew Cook of Cairo, Georgia takes the lead at Pickwick Lake with a total weight of 22 pounds, 13 ounces. Cook went to work fast and furious this morning on an area he had “mostly to himself.” After catching a solid limit, he left his main area and practiced for the final two days of the event.

“It was a good day and about what I expected,” he said. “I caught them pretty quick this morning and left them alone. I can’t wait to get out there tomorrow.”

Isaac Peavyhouse

Hailing from Jamestown, TN, Isaac Peavyhouse secures second place on day one at Pickwick Lake with 22 pounds, 7 ounces, anchored by a big bass weighing 6 pounds, 7 ounces.

Peavyhouse is focusing on “typical TVA River” stuff and has figured out how to get bites fishing behind other anglers. He is rotating through seven to ten spots and looking for quality bass.

“You need to get a big bite on a place like this, and I was fortunate to get one today,” he said. “Hopefully I can go out there tomorrow and get another one to keep the pace.”

Patrick Walters

South Carolina angler Patrick Walters sits in the third-place spot with a total weight of 20 pounds, 3 ounces on day one. Fishing how he wants to be on Pickwick Lake, Walters worked an offshore pattern and looks forward to getting going on day two.

John Branch

John Branch started strong on day one of the NPFL tournament at Pickwick Lake, hauling in a 20-pound, 1-ounce catch and sitting in fourth place. The angler from Magnolia, Kentucky, rode a productive practice to get off to a solid start with two days of competition remaining.

Branch spent the majority of his practice period doing a lot of looking and not a lot of casting. Like many others, he did not find a lot of places, but the places he did find was exactly what he was looking for.

“I got into them first thing and had to make a few key adjustments; once I did, it was game on,” he said. “I was done fishing around 1 pm and then had to play a little bit of defense for the afternoon.”

He is focusing on “offshore” areas and working over key spots. “I have a couple of areas I am confident in, as of now, that I can get a bite,” he added. “Ledge fishing is not my favorite way to fish, but I have been teaching myself to do it, and today it worked out.”

JT Russell

With a day one weight of 19 pounds, 10 ounces, JT Russell sits in fifth place after day one. The Alabama pro rallied after a tough practice and managed to put together five bites on spots he fished years ago.

“I fished here a bit in high school and college, but it was a tough few practice days for me,” he said. “I fished about a 5-mile stretch of the river where I have around ten spots and only got through four spots before I finished out my limit and caught my fifth fish.”

Russell is unsure what day two will bring but is confident he can get some bites for the rest of the tournament.

“Timing is key out here, and you only have so much time to do work when the water starts moving,” he added. “I did not see a ton of boats around, so hopefully that stays that way for me.”

Michael Yoder and Lonnie Cochran are tied for the Power-Pole Big Bass Award with a 7-pound, 5-ounce bass.

Rest of the Best:
Michael Yoder 19-7
Dustin Perry 18-13
John Soukup 18-13
Thomas Shelton 18-5
Zack Birge 18-4