Locals reel‘em in at Sardis Lake
by Andy Collier
Nov 27, 2013 | 2047 views | 0 0 comments | 32 32 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Bernard Williams/Magnolia Crappie Club
(From left) The Bolivar County team of Rusty Burroughs and Allen “Torch” Tindle won the Magnolia Crappie Club Sardis Lake Fishing Tournament on Nov. 16.
Bernard Williams/Magnolia Crappie Club (From left) The Bolivar County team of Rusty Burroughs and Allen “Torch” Tindle won the Magnolia Crappie Club Sardis Lake Fishing Tournament on Nov. 16.
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Bernard Williams/Magnolia Crappie Club
(From left) The local team of Chris Horton and Kevin Horton took second in the Magnolia Crappie Club Sardis Lake Fishing Tournament on Nov. 16.
Bernard Williams/Magnolia Crappie Club (From left) The local team of Chris Horton and Kevin Horton took second in the Magnolia Crappie Club Sardis Lake Fishing Tournament on Nov. 16.
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Allen “Torch” Tindle and Rusty Burroughs had a great day fishing at Sardis Lake on Nov. 16.

Tindle and Burroughs won the Magnolia Crappie Club Sardis Lake Fishing Tournament by catching seven fish that weighed 13.23 pounds. Their biggest fish weighed 2.31 pounds and the average weight of their fish was 1.89 pounds. Tindle is from Cleveland, while Burroughs is from Shelby. There were a total of 42 teams in the event. The Magnolia Crappie Club is one of the most successful crappie clubs in the country and its tournaments are among some of the biggest around.

Tindle, 51, was excited about the victory at Sardis Lake.

“We had a pretty good day,” Tindle said. “We’ve won before, but that was the first Magnolia Crappie Club Tournament that we’ve won. We’ve won the Thunder on Water Tournament at Grenada and some other tournaments but that’s first Magnolia Crappie Club Tournament that we’ve won.”

Tindle said winning one of those tournaments hosted by the Magnolia Crappie Club is a major feat in itself.

“Winning one of those tournaments with that many teams is hard to do,” Tindle said. “There are a bunch of good fishermen in there. It just happened to be our day. We finished a tournament the week before and came in fourth. We had located those fish during that tournament and went back to’em. We fished a area that wasn’t a hundred yards by a hundred yards and we just stayed there and went back and forth.”

Burroughs, 66, was very proud of the team’s accomplishment at Sardis Lake.

“It makes you feel great to win at something for a change instead of coming in at fourth or fifth or way on down the line,” Burroughs said.

Burroughs and Tindle have been fishing together for the last few years. Before the two fished together, Burroughs hadn’t fished for a while.

According to Burroughs, Tindle got him back in the water fishing.

“I had completely quit crappie fishing,” Burroughs said. “I hadn’t fished in probably 10 years. Allen was set to fish with somebody one day, and they backed out and he called me and said ‘Do you want to go fishing?’ I said I ain’t been in a while and I said I’ll go. He got me hooked again.”

The winning duo had to beat out another local fishing team as Cleveland residents Chris Horton and Kevin Horton finished second by catching seven fish for a total of 12.99 pounds. The biggest fish the duo caught weight 2.24 pounds and the average weight of the fish was 1.86 pounds. Chris and Kevin are also brothers.

One thing that helped Tindle and Burroughs and Chris and Kevin was the fact they were familiar with the area.

“I talked to Chris and we all grew up fishing these lakes around home,” Tindle said. “You take that knowledge of these bigger lakes and you have to break it down. What would these fish be doing at home and what would they be doing on my lake at this time of the year and just break those lakes down to a smaller like. That’s what I usually do. We had located those fish the weekend before and Chris and Kevin had fished our tournament the week before. They went back to their same spot, and we did to.”

For Chris and Kevin, doing well in the Magnolia Crappie Club Tournaments is nothing new to them. Last year, Chris and Kevin finished third in the Magnolia Crappie Club Points Race with 200.63. Chris and Kevin are currently 15th in this year’s point standings with six more tournament remaining on the nine-tournament schedule. Tindle and Burroughs are currently 36th in this year’s standings with 33.23 points.

According to Chris, he and Kevin put in a lot of work preparing for the tournament in Sardis.

“We actually got to fish a crappie.com tournament which was the weekend before at Sardis “Of course Allen and Rusty were there to. We put in a lot of time pre-fishing these lakes. We’ve been fishing competitively for about three years now. The only way we found out we can do good in tournaments is to make sure we fish the lakes before the tournament.”

Chris, 40, said having ideal weather conditions was critical.

“It rained Friday, the day before the tournament, and it was pretty bad,” Chris said. “We ended up watching the weather and the wind was supposed to blow out of the south about 10 miles per hour at about seven o’clock which is bad in fishing terms. I told my brother, we had been catching the fish on the north side of the lake, which would have put us in wind all day.

“I told him Friday night if we can get an hour or two tomorrow morning on the north side of the lake we can catch some good fish. We just have to get over there and do what we can do quick.”

Chris and Kevin were able to get on the lake at about 6 a.m. and find their spot when the wind was calm which proved to be good news as they caught seven fish between 6:30 and 7 a.m. The duo also moved around to different spots in the lake, and Kevin caught eight fish between 1 and 2 p.m. with four of those fish ranking among their biggest seven.

Kevin, 34, said he always enjoys fishing with Chris and competing in tournaments.

“It’s real fun fishing with my brother,” Kevin said. “It’s a real competitive sport out there. We’ve got a lot of good fishermen to fish with. Anytime we fish together, we enjoy it. We do spend a lot of money fishing together, and if it wasn’t for our local sponsors we wouldn’t be able to do it. It’s enjoyable. It’s hard to explain how enjoyable it is to be able to do something with your brother.”

According to Chris, fishing is a way for him and Kevin to spend time together.

“Both of us have families and we don’t have time to see each other much and this gives us a chance to get out on the lake and do something our parents did with us as kids and that’s fish,” Chris said.

“I’ve been fishing competitively for five years. My brother wanted to get into it, so three years ago we decided to start fishing together. We’ve been very fortunate to finish were we have,” Chris added.

Another Cleveland team that competed in the MCC tournament in Sardis was Steve Marquis and Troy Garrett who came in 15th by catching 11.05 pounds of fish on seven fish. Garrett and Marquis are currently 22nd in the Magnolia Crappie Club standings with 45.60 points.