Event pays out more than $48,000 in winnings
MOUNTAIN HOME, Ark. (June 3, 2015) – Jacob Leininger and Jeff Rogers, both of Slidell, Louisiana, weighed a two-redfish limit that totaled 18.21 pounds to win the first regular-season event for the Louisiana Division of the IFA Redfish Tour presented by Cabela’s on May 30 at Lafitte, Louisiana.
The team finally topped the winner’s podium after two previous second-place finishes and one fourth-place finish on the IFA Redfish Tour. Fishing the Delacroix area, the anglers concentrated their efforts in ponds with Berkley Gulp! and soft plastics.
With impending rain forecasted for the day of competition, the anglers would need a stretch of good weather to be competitive.
“We were in an area that was real clean water and we were sight-fishing,” said Leininger. “So the sun was a big factor for us. We felt like we had a short window to really get it done. We didn’t catch any rain until the ride back in. We kind of got lucky with that.”
Due to scheduling conflicts, the anglers only pre-fished for a few hours before the tournament and planned to target only one area.
“We only had one major spot that we were going to stick to,” said Leininger. “We were basically going to live or die in that one area.”
Their day started out with a slow bite and dampened the team’s spirits, but a rising tide brought in some much needed water.
“At first, we hardly saw any fish and were really discouraged,” said Leininger. “But we knew that the right fish were there. We were hoping that with the rising tide the fish were going to turn on.”
After an hour of struggling, the team caught their first keeper fish. After that first weighable fish, the bite came on strong.
“We really had a phenomenal day of fishing,” said Leininger. “We caught 15 or so fish. We ended throwing two big fish back that we culled up. The last fish I caught was the 9.4-pounder so we decided to leave early.”
The anglers were excited for their first-time victory and are looking forward to the next IFA Redfish Tour event in Louisiana.
“This event was awesome,” said Leininger. “To fish with the best of the best and to win it was just amazing. We are definitely going to fish the second divisional event in Houma and are hoping to make the IFA Open as well.”
The anglers won a fully rigged Ranger boat powered by a Yamaha outboard valued at $25,995 for first place and added an extra $2,597 by participating in the Anglers Advantage program.
Chad Dufrene, of Purvis, Mississippi, and Barnie White, of Brewton, Alabama, weighed 17.82 pounds of redfish to take home the $3,302 second-place prize. The anglers added $1,294 in Anglers Advantage cash and $750 by winning the Berkley Big Redfish award with their 10.05-pound lunker.
Dufrene and White ran 73 miles to fish in the Houma area.
“We sight-fished with Berkley Gulp! jerkbaits,” said Dufrene. “It was a good job fishing today from by partner Barnie White.”
Long-time IFA Redfish Tour anglers Chris Kennedy, of Metairie, Louisiana, and Chris Cenci, of Jacksonville, Florida, won a total of $3,211 for their 17.39-pound limit.
“Conditions were as great for May,” said Kennedy. “We sight-fished in the Venice area and it was perfect.”
The next stop for the IFA Redfish Tour is at Corpus Christi, Texas, on June 6. All teams that enter at least a minimum of two events and compete in at least one event will qualify for the 2015 IFA Redfish Tour championship.
IFA events are made possible through the sponsorship and continued support of these well-respected brands: Hobie Fishing, Ranger Boats, Cabela’s, Lucas Oil, Yamaha Outboards, RAM, Berkley Gulp!, Berkley Gulp! Alive!, PENN Reels, Spiderwire, Minn Kota, Humminbird, Power-Pole, Amphibia, Arctic Ice, Protect the Harvest, General Tire, Bob’s Machine Shop, SuperClean, Mustang Survival, iON Cameras, Valley Fashions, ENGEL Coolers, Bulldog Folding Trailers, Hildebrandt, T-H Marine, ATLAS, G-Juice Powertex Group, Audubon Aquarium of the Americas and Team Lafitte Harbor.
For more information or to become a member of the IFA, visit www.ifatours.com.
IFA Redfish Tour – Louisiana Division
Lafitte, La. (Top 10)
Jacob Leininger/Jeff Rogers – 18.21 lbs.
Chad Dufrene/Barnie White- 17.82 lbs.
Chris Kennedy/Chris Cenci – 17.39 lbs.
Jimmy Matherne/Hal Robichaux – 16.63 lbs.
Shawn Vallandingham/Mark Sepe – 16.60 lbs.
Beau Weber/Sean Thornton – 16.40 lbs.
Heath Lavin/Alan Chace – 16.34 lbs.
Nash Roberts/Luke Landry – 16.24 lbs.
Bo Sullivan/Bobby Sullivan- 16.17 lbs.
Manny Perez/Jared Nixon – 16.06 lbs.