Pirches Catch 2nd At Allstar Bass Meet

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The husband-and-wife angling team of Clifford and Alicia Pirch fished their way to second-place honors at the AllStar Bass Couples Invitational held Saturday at Lake Pleasant.

Although Pirch is originally from Payson, the couple currently calls Tonto Basin home, where they operate Copper State hunting and fishing guide service.

Also showing well in the tournament with a ninth-place finish was the fishing team of Jake and Heidi Randall of Pine.

Kay Wagner and Chi Chi Chavez, of Roosevelt, were sixth.

First-place honors went to Peoria residents Pat and Steve Grier. The gold-medal winning pair weighed in a six-fish limit of 14.81 pounds that included the tournament's big fish a 7.16 pounder.

The Pirches boated a limit that weighed 13.46 pounds. In their catch was a 3.01 pounder. For the win, the couple pocketed $1,000 in prize money.

Wagner and Chavez earned $300 for their limit of 10.22 pounds.

The Randall's ninth-place finish for 9.87 pounds was worth $280.

By winning the tournament, the Grier's increased their family budget by $3,235.

The Pirches angling strategy was to fish jerkbaits in coves at the north end of the lake.

According to AllStar spokesman Tom Stiles, the Griers fished white spinnerbaits in Humbug Cove and Carolina-rigged cotton candy colored lizards and drop shot rigged baby bass colored finesse worms in Cole's and Goose bays. The big bass was hooked on a spinnerbait early in the day.

One 4.97 pound bass was caught on a Castaic swim bait.

Although more than half the field weighed in their limits, fishing conditions were rendered tough by a major cold front that dropped daytime temperatures by 20 degrees during the tournament, Stiles said.

Just after weigh-in, rain began to fall steadily.

The next AllStar Bass Couples team tournament is set for May 19, also at Lake Pleasant. Call (480) 894-2775 for more information.

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