WWBT Pro Angler of the Year title, FLW Western Series Angler of the Year, Havasu FLW champion and Clear Lake FLW champion
Behind the angler:
Tai’s father had him out fishing at a young age, targeting ponds for catfish, bluegill and anything that swam. At 12, a trip to Wal-Mart gave everyone in the family a chance to pick their own lure. Tai’s choice was a Rapala crankbait. He was hooked on bass fishing. When he was 16 years-old, he saw a team tournament flyer in a tackle shop and entered with his brother. That launched his competitive fishing journey.
In the boat:
A Z-Man Jack Hammer ChatterBait with a Yamamoto Zako trailer is Tai’s presentation of choice. A Yamamoto Baits Senko either Neko or wacky-rigged runs a close second. Some other on-deck staples for Tai are a G-Funk A-rig, a Duo Realis G-Fix and Yamamoto plastics, including a Flappin’ Hog. Fitzgerald Rods fill his rod locker.
In His own words:
I am a regular dude that loves fishing. I am approachable and love making people laugh as much as I love fishing. Consider me your buddy on Tour. I put everything into the sport and in many ways, it saved my life. I felt the fishing out West was getting stagnant, fishing the same lakes. over and over, again. I love fishing new fisheries. That is why I am venturing out East this year and why I am excited to be involved with APEX and their interest in smaller, less-fished lakes. There will be less of an advantage to guys; because they’re not common fisheries. APEX offers competition with no practice against some really good sticks and water that we haven’t been on will really level the playing field. The APEX field is a great group of guys, supporting each other, not only as friends; but also supporting each other’s sponsors. I don’t know how long I will be back East. It is very expensive and a logistics challenge for guys here in the West. APEX will offer an alternative for guy’s that cannot go fish in the other circuits in the East. Together we will all be able to grow APEX.