In one of the greatest comeback stories in the event’s history, 25-year-old professional angler Jordan Lee (above) was crowned the 2017 Bassmaster Classic Champion on Lake Conroe, Texas.
After day one of the 3-day event, Lee had only 8 pounds, 6 ounces (three fish; daily limit is five). And by noon on day two, approximately halfway through the allotted time, he had yet to put a bass in the livewell. Chances for a comeback – or even qualifying in the top 25 to fish on day three – seemed impossible.
But as the saying goes, “It’s never over until it’s over,” held true for Lee. According to a recent article on Bassmaster, Lee returned to try an underwater point that had failed to produce any fish during day one of the event. Thanks to a weather change, the point now contained bass – big ones – and Lee boated four bass that weighed a total of 21 pounds. His two-day weight of 29 pounds 6 ounces was good enough for 15th place and a spot in Sunday’s final.
Brent Ehrler (above) was in the lead heading into the final day with a two-day weight of 43 pounds 4 ounces. In other words, Lee was nearly 14 pounds behind. Not only would he need a monster day with monster bass, but he’d need Ehrler – and a few others near the top of the leaderboard – to stumble slightly and keep the door opened for the young angler.
And that’s just what happened. Returning to his underwater point, Lee eventually boated five bass for 27 pounds 4 ounces, giving him a three-day total of 56 pounds, 10 ounces. Ehrler, who also brought five bass to the weigh-in stage, simply didn’t have the quality; his five weighed only 11 pounds 10 ounces, giving Lee the title.
Note: New OHUB bass fishing columnist and 2016 Bassmaster Classic winner Edwin Evers (above) was in a great position to repeat as champion. He was sitting in third place entering the final day with a two-day total of 39 pounds, just 4 pounds 4 ounces out of the lead. Unfortunately, Edwin brought only 6 pounds 11 ounces (two bass) to the weigh-in scale on Sunday, dropping him to 11th place. Be sure to watch for Edwin’s upcoming OHUB bass blog to find out what went right – and wrong – at this year’s Classic.
Congrats Jordan Lee on an incredible come-from-behind finish! Watch the video of his winning catch below; amazing!