Ashley works his magic on Hartwell
Mercury pro Casey Ashley executed the rare wire-to-wire win at the FLW Tour event on Lake Hartwell out of Seneca, SC with a four-day total of 68 pounds 5 ounces. Ashley is a local fella, but the home-lake curse didn't hold any water for him. He calmly fished his hot spots to achieve this win even though he had a morning boat switch due to a livewell issue with the FLW provided rig.
Rounding out the Top 5 are in second Livingston Lures pro Andy Morgan with 53 pounds 13 ounces, third went to Clent Davis weighing in 50 pounds 9 ounces, Shimano pro Cody Meyer brought in 49 pounds 14 ounces for fourth and Crestliner pro john Cox weighed 48 pounds 14 ounces to finish fifth.
Ashley had the magic.
"This week was just magical for me," said Ashley. "To win in front of people you know is just amazing. I've won a few tournaments before, but I never went into the final day with such a big lead. It's usually a real struggle to win. This was just magical."
Deep water was key.
"I like to fish shallow," said Ashley. "I knew everybody else was going to fish shallow here too. I decided to fish deeper water. I knew those fish would be more stable with the changing weather conditions. In practice I found a lot of fish. Plus, I didn't want to fish behind anybody, I don't do well doing that.
"I fished shallow along with deep on the first day, but after that it was deeper the rest of the tournament. Once I would get a limit I'd stay in the same general area, but branch out a bit and fish different spots."
Ashley used a combo of a Zoom Finesse Worm on a shaky head and a Shooter jig with a Zoom Chunk Jr. to catch his fish. Green pumpkin was his primary color. All of his larger fish came on the jig. He targeted submerged cover near docks in water ranging from 30-to 40-feet deep. He would slowly work the offerings through the cover, sometimes taking more than a minute per retrieve.