Matt Arey caught a respectable 15-pound limit of Lake Champlain smallmouth Thursday at the Guaranteed Rate Bassmaster Elite, but in a vivid display of how many fish live in this huge lake, it was only good enough for 76th place.
“A limit full of light 3-pounders like I caught yesterday, versus a limit of heavy 3-pounders is the difference between sitting in the Top 20 versus the bottom 20. So today I need to go find a school of heavy 3s,” says the Team Toyota pro.
If he does, some of the credit should go to a motivational video made for him by daughters Reese and Wren featuring rock band AC/DC’s iconic tune “Back in Black” aimed to inspire a major comeback for daddy today.
His bride Emily captured the two dancing to the hard-driving tune and sent it to him in a text.
“What cracks me up is you totally see the difference in their personalities as they’re dancing. My 8-year old Reese is her typical gracious and measured self, while her little sister Wren is up front with some sort of crazy rock star intensity,” laughed Arey.
He may be sitting in the back of the pack to begin Day 2, but his priorities are always up front in clear focus, and Emily helps greatly in maintaining such crisp perspective.
“Emily told me not to worry about where I’m sitting in the 2022 Classic cut line. But man, it’s hard not to. It’s my job,” says Arey.
He’ll focus on smallmouth again Friday, and if he connects with the heavy 3-pounders he needs to surge up the leaderboard, you can be certain two cute little blondes dancing to “Back in Black” back home in Shelby, NC will help fuel his comeback.