PREVIEW: Lane on Momentum: '(Martens) is Going to be Really Hard to Beat'

By Joel Shangle - March 8, 2018

ALPENA, Michigan – Although he came into the 2018 Summit Cup in Alpena, Michigan as the defending General Tire World Champion, Bobby Lane points across the tournament-headquarters parking lot at fellow competitor Aaron Martens: “That guy right there is going to be really hard to beat this week,” Lane says.

Just a day earlier, Martens had put on a smallmouth clinic in the week’s first Elimination Round competition on Hubbard Lake, catching 22 fish for 54-0 pounds and beating Lane by 34-6. Even though Lane’s 19-10 was comfortably enough to advance him to the Sudden Death Rounds, the 13-year Florida veteran witnessed both the highs and lows of tournament momentum during the day’s competition.

“Momentum in fishing is 100 percent true: you can get on a roll and catch ‘em, catch ‘em, catch ‘em, and Aaron looks like he’s on one of those rolls right now,” Lane says. “He’s had a little bit of an up-and-down year, but he just won an Elite Series event on Lake Champlain last week, and then comes in here this week and just throttles us. He’s on one of those highs where it’s really hard to slow a guy down.”

Lane, meanwhile, rode the opposite end of the momentum train in the Elimination Round. He started off strongly, catching two near-4s (a 3-12 and a 3-13) in Period 1, and then connected with the biggest fish of the day (a 5-10) late in the second period.

But then Lane tried to boat-flip another nice smallmouth, lost it, and felt his momentum sink right back into Hubbard’s waters with that fish.

“Losing that fish really drove me into the ground for awhile,” Lane admits. “Bites were very few and far between for me, and I immediately started listening more to SCORETRACKER because I knew the rest of those guys would catch them fast. You start running numbers through your head and it completely shuts down your momentum.”

Lane caught only two fish for 3-10 over the final 3 hours, 45 minutes of the day, but managed to escape his negative momentum shift and join Martens, Jeff Kriet, Brent Ehrler, Jason Christie and Keith Poche in Sudden Death.

“The first fish I caught after I lost that fish felt so crucial, it was silly,” Lane says. “When you have good momentum, it can all be really easy. But when you do something dumb like I did and lose one, you have to be careful that it doesn’t turn into a weeklong deal.”

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