Frenette father and son team takes Kemah Redfish Cup
KEMAH, Texas - Mike Frenette celebrated his 50th birthday Saturday in perfect style.
He, and 16-year old son, Michael Frenette won the Oh Boy! Oberto Redfish Cup presented by frogg toggs in a fashion befitting a 50-year old angler. They slowed down, way down.
The Marrero, Louisiana team posted a two-fish stringer totaling 15.01 pounds to win the top prize $40,000.
Robert Scherer (Houston, Texas) and Mark Huse (Hackberry, La.,) were second with 11.33 pounds. They were followed by Jim Franklin (Angleton, Texas) and Brian Fornea (Abita Springs, La.) in third with 9.83 pounds. Jimmy Lloyd (Deer Park, Texas) and Mickey Eastman (Baytown, Texas) were fourth with 8.10 pounds. And Jon and Kris Culpepper, both of Houston, Texas, rounded out the top five with 7.53 pounds.
Frenette and Frenette won the event by concentrating on the rock jetties that dot the edge of the ship channel within Galveston Bay. By their own admission, the tactic was designed not to win, but catch enough fish to just gain points in the Oberto Team of the Year standings.
"We had a terrible practice," Mike Frenette said. "We even went to Lake Charles (Louisiana) trying to find somewhere we could catch two keepers. I burned 70 gallons of gas on Tuesday and we had nothing to show for it.
"I finally said, "I know how to fish these jetties and I'm going to stay here and grind it out and hope to catch two keepers."
On Day One of the event, the team caught those two keepers, totaling about 6 pounds in the first hour of the event, on crankbaits and Rat'l Traps.
"We were ecstatic," Mike Frenette said. "But I noticed a lot of redfish running out of the rocks, taking a swipe at the bait and then running back into the holes.
"I figured out right then I was going to do something different."
That changes was two-fold. The age told him to slow down. His experience convinced him to switch baits.
"Michael likes to bass fish, so I asked him if he had any bullet weights and worm hooks," Mike Frenette said. "I rigged up a Gulp Sinking Minnow and started letting it just fall into the holes."
Within 20 minutes Frenette hooked up with two keepers. The younger Frenette quickly followed suit.
The slow method produced almost 16-pounds in two keepers on Day One. They followed that up with 15.83 pounds on Day Two to make the final-five cut with a two-day total 31.79 pounds.
"We started this tournament looking to not zero," Michael Frenette said. "We always think we're going to win, but not in this one."