GREENVILLE -- Three pro bass fishermen from South Carolina are in the top 10 after the first day of the FLW Tour event on Lake Hartwell on Thursday, including leader Casey Ashley of Donalds. Ashley brought in a 5-fish limit that weighed 21 pounds, 7 ounces, good for a lead of better than two pounds over Skip Johnson of Goodells, Mich., who had 19-4
Jason Quinn of Rock Hill is fourth with 18-9, and Barton Aiken of Greenville is ninth with 16-0.
Only five of the top 100 anglers in the field of 176 failed to land a 5-fish limit, despite changing weather conditions kept most fishermen from developing productive big-fish patterns. Keith Amerson of Bethel Springs, Tenn., had the day's big fish, a 6-pound, 13-ounce bass. He had only one keeper to go with that big fish, however, and is in 50th place with 11-0.
John Cox of Debary, Fla. is third with 18-13, and Ramie Colson Jr., of Cadiz, Ky, was fifth with 17-9.
Two more South Carolina pros are in the top 50 after the first of four tournament days. Nick Gainey of Charleston is 41st with a 5-fish limit that weighed 11-8, and Jayme Rampey of Liberty is 49th with 11-1.