Recently, the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit visited Lewis Smith Lake in Alabama for its second stop of the year, marking their fifth total visit to this beautiful body of water. Among the field of 163 anglers vying for top angler throughout the four-day event, two of our very own pros – Spencer Shuffield and Cody Meyer – took home the coveted 2nd and 3rd place finishes thanks to a bevy of catches, earning them a chunk of winnings as well as leverage in the overall circuit standings.
Spencer Shuffield had his eyes on the top spot all the way throughout the final day of the weekend, jumping from seventh place to second with the biggest cumulative five-bass limit of the day – a total of 17 pounds and 8 ounces. Spencer has been clawing his way closer and closer to his first win, and his second-place finish at Smith Lake tied his best finish of his professional career.
Utilizing his mastery of forward-facing sonar, Spencer was able to dial in on specific docks and coax bites from under them using minnow flats and jerkbaits. He also used a Duel Hardcore Twitch’n Ninja Glider to goad bass into biting thanks to its methodic, finely tuned gliding action. He credits his performance on day two as the reason he could not claim the top spot, when he tried imitating another angler’s pattern to reel in 3 ½ pounders but could not find the same success. “Day 2 really cost me. I gave it my all and left everything out there. It just wasn’t meant to be.” Spencer is looking to build off his incredible success at Smith Lake to claim first place at the next competition.
Cody Meyer grew up fishing the waters of Northern California’s Lake Shasta, which he claims acts the same as Smith Lake. His familiarity makes it no surprise that he was able to claim second runner-up at this leg of the Pro Circuit. That being said, Cody does admit that this year’s event was a bit tougher than years past.
“I had to change so much this event. I mean, every day was different. I fished docks, pockets, bridges, over 100 feet of water, the face of the dam, laydowns – everything.” Besides frequently changing locations, Cody also changed his baits daily. He started day 1 with an Evergreen FA 87 jerkbait, which he cast from a 6-9 Daiwa Tatula Elite rod. By day 2, he had already switched to a Yamamoto swimbait.
The third day of the tournament is when Cody really dipped into his bag of tricks. He relied on his swimbait, a wacky-rigged Yamamoto Senko, and even a popping cork with his own homemade hair jig at the end. “I just had to keep trying different things to even get them to bite.”
The next leg of the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit will bring Spencer and Cody to Lake Murray in Columbia, South Carolina, where they hope to expand on their Smith Lake success. From April 22nd through the 25th, they will be competing with dozens of other anglers to claim the top spot and move further up the standings.