Dave Mansue of Robbinsville, N.J., earned his first BASS victory at the season-opening Bassmaster Northern Open presented by Oakley on the Chesapeake Bay. Mansue’s three-day total of 47-pounds, 6-ounces was enough to hold off Curtis Richardson of Belleville, Canada by exactly six pounds.
“This is incredible,” Mansue said. “I’ve been fishing competitively for 10 years and it feels great to be able to say I’m a champion now.”
Mansue only managed three fish weighing 10 pounds, 13 ounces on Saturday, but it was enough to maintain his lead over Day One leader Frank Scalish of Cleveland, Ohio. Scalish brought a single fish weighing 5-pounds, 10-ounces to the scales to finish third with a three-day total of 39-10. As Mansue predicted after Friday’s weigh-in, he took advantage of a strong current to claim his first victory.
“I said I’d need the current, and it was there today,” he said. “There were four places I had planned to fish and I kept rotating through them trying to get a bite. I probably went around four or five times today.”
Mansue was working a 3/4-ounce green pumpkin football head jig with a green pumpkin Zoom Ultra Vibe Speed Craw trailer along rocky outcroppings and boulders to bag his fish. The current played a big part in his win, and he was relatively secluded.
“I know there were a lot of boats piled up in a few places, but I thought if I could get away form them I’d stand a better chance,” he said. “As far as I could tell, there was no one else doing what I was doing.”