McClelland, a four-time Elite Series winner, had no qualms about his runner-up showing this time.
"I'm tickled to death with a 2nd-place finish," he said. "Anytime you run that far that many days in a row, it's a big gamble. With the conditions I had to face, I was blessed.
"Everything had to all into place for me to finish as good as I did."
He's been in contention in all three events he's competed in this year – he was 8th at the Classic and 13th at the Ross Barnett Central Open after leading on day 1.
"I do feel like I'm fishing well. I've got a lot of confidence and a lot of good momentum going right now. It's really kind of strange, but when I look back on all the years of my career, the only year I really competed for the Angler of the Year (he was 3rd in 2008) was the year I won the first event at the Harris Chain.
"A good start is such a momentum-builder to even have a chance for Angler of the Year."
He caught six keepers today and missed three others. His 4-02 bag topper was the biggest fish of the day. Full Story
ORANGE, Texas — Where Mike McClelland is concerned, the dateline should be Houston instead of Orange for the Bassmaster Elite at the Sabine River presented by STARK Cultural Venues. McClelland is running 114 miles to Galveston Bay before making his first cast of the day.
And that's even with the fog delays that shortened the days to a 9 a.m. start Thursday and a 9:40 a.m. launch Friday.
"Based on the practice I've had in the Sabine River area, I told myself if I could fish for just one hour, I would go," said McClelland, who is in seventh place with a two-day total of 20 pounds, 15 ounces. "As long as I can go over there and fish for one hour, I'll continue to go over there." Read More