Lake Winnipesaukee was the fourth stop for Elite Kayak Fishing this year. Expectations were high leading up to the event, as Lake Winnipesuakee has been putting up big limits all season.
And she didn’t disappoint! The top 24 anglers hauled in over 80 inches of mostly smallmouth bass, with the top eight anglers being separated by just two inches. A true slugfest!
Like most summer tournaments on Winnipesaukee, Mike Morcone had to go deep to find the winning fish.
“It basically came down to locating big bait balls in 45–65 feet to target the better-quality fish,” Mike said. “My feeling was 90–92 inches would win, so I never felt anyone would run away [with it], so to speak, but in my mind, I felt I needed a little more. Competition was stacked, so I figured what we were seeing across the board was a solid trend. I kept that in mind and just stayed calm, telling myself the quality was a touch down all around and the slightly smaller limits might just do it. I saw better fish in practice for sure, so the last hour or so I figured the next upgrade might just win the whole thing.”
And he was right. A key late-game upgrade sealed the deal. But barely.
Mike tied for 1st place with Nick Audi, current Elite Kayak Fishing Angler of the Year leader. They both had 89.50 inches, but Mike had the largest fish between them, an 18.25-inch smallmouth, which was the tie-breaker.
Having only fished one other Elite Kayak Fishing event this season, this win was enough points to secure Morcone a spot in the championship at Lake Champlain next month.
“Well, I couldn’t make many events with all the family-life chaos,” Mike said, “so that’s definitely a great perk to the win. I’ve never fished Champlain and have to travel to Pennsylvania this weekend for KFL, so I’m really hoping I can make it work! Should be a blast.”
As mentioned, Nick Audi secured a 2nd place finish, as well as the top spot in the Angler of the Year race, while Jake Angulas took 3rd with 88.75 inches.
For this event, we paid out six spots, plus lunker—nearly $10,000 in cash and prizes from our sponsors: Three Belles Outfitters, Bixpy, Harpoon Brewery, and Dakota Lithium Batteries!
Special thanks to Messy Mike’s Barbecue & Catering for amazing gift bag!
The rest of the top ten played out as follows:
4th – Ryan Matylewicz (88.75)
5th – Matt Lee (88.50)
6th – Ken Wood (88.00)
7th – Matthew Zapala (87.75)
8th – Joseph Daddeo (87.50)
9th – Jason Gardner (86.50)
10th – Anthony Campbell (86.00)
The Bixpy Big Bass winner was Ronel Mullen, with a massive 21.75-inch Winnipesaukee largemouth!
Congratulations once again to all the winners!
This event concluded our regular season. Next up is the championship on Lake Champlain, September 10–11!