Tournament Anglers Catch Limits of 3-Pound Crappies

The winning team at the recent Crappie Masters tournament on Grenada Lake in Mississippi checked in 14 crappies for a total weight of 42.84 pounds, which is a 3.06-pound average.

Tournament Anglers Catch Limits of 3-Pound Crappies

Dillon Hackler (left) and Zeke Anderson show off four of their seven crappies during the final day of the 2021 Crappie Masters tournament on Grenada Lake, Mississippi.

If you dream of someday catching a 3-pound crappie, then it only makes sense to put Grenada Lake in Mississippi at the top of your bucket list. The following Crappie Masters tournament (March 12 and 13, 2021) recap numbers are mindboggling.

Zeke Anderson and Dillon Hackler won the $10,000 first place check by bringing seven alive slab crappies to the scale on both days of the event; their total weight for 14 crappies was 42.84 pounds, which is a 3.06-pound average. The second place team had 14 crappies for 42.41 pounds.

While this winning weight is crazy-big, the other event statistics are just as impressive. 

  • 46 teams weighed at least one crappie over 3 pounds
  • Largest crappie of the event weighed 3.78 pounds
  • Three teams weighed 21-plus pounds the first day (seven fish); the day one leaders had 21.92 pounds
  • It took a 2.80-pound average fish for 14 crappies to break into the top 10
  • During the event, 88 teams brought crappies to the weigh-in scale. There were 1,012 fish weighed, with an average weight of 2.46 pounds per crappie. Important note: Crappie Masters believes strongly in fisheries conservation; the weighed fish were treated with great care and released back into Grenada Lake to be caught again in the future.
Dillon Hackler (left) and Zeke Anderson celebrate their narrow victory at the 2021 Crappie Masters Grenada Lake event. Below is their reaction after seeing their second day weight of 21.51 pounds for seven fish.
Dillon Hackler (left) and Zeke Anderson celebrate their narrow victory at the 2021 Crappie Masters Grenada Lake event. Below is their reaction after seeing their second day weight of 21.51 pounds for seven fish.

The winning team’s biggest crappie weighed 3.63 pounds. In interviews after the event, Anderson and Hackler said they caught their fish on a Redneck Rubber Co. Beaver Bottom Baits in color “bone meal” (bone white and chartreuse; below).

Hackler and Anderson relied on a Beaver Bottom Baits soft plastic in color “bone meal” from Redneck Rubber Co. to entice strikes from Grenada Lake crappies.
Hackler and Anderson relied on a Beaver Bottom Baits soft plastic in color “bone meal” from Redneck Rubber Co. to entice strikes from Grenada Lake crappies.

On his Facebook page, Dillon Hackler posted: “What a weekend it was on Grenada Lake, Mississippi. For the last 6-7 years, I kept hearing about these Mississippi lakes producing giant fish. I finally got to fish Grenada for the first time, and it was more than I ever expected!

"Zeke Anderson and I went down and fished the  Crappie Masters two-day event and pulled off the win! Unreal two days of fishing, and we now hold the all-time two-day record weight of 42.84 on 14 fish! I’m still trying to figure how we even did this! Thanks to all of our sponsors! We love this sport, and will continue to do our best along the way!”

Zeke Anderson wrote on his Facebook page: “Dillon Hackler and I had a blast at Grenada! It’s a surreal feeling to pull off the win against some stiff competition. It still hasn’t fully hit us yet. We were able to set a new two-day record with 42.84 lbs! Never thought I’d see these kinds of weights at a crappie tournament. After a really tough start day two, we made a move and landed on the giants. Caught three over 3 lbs in the last hour! Ended up going in 30 minutes early due to some trolling motor problems. Thank you to all that support us. The outpouring of messages and calls has been very humbling.”

The winning team and many other anglers targeted big crappies by using Garmin LiveScope, which allowed them to pinpoint individual fish within casting/jigging distance of the boat. If you want to see an example of how crappie anglers are using Garmin LiveScope to target individual crappies, then check out this video from Joey Johnson. You’ll see LiveScope in action, and Johnson places a red arrow over individual crappies on his screen so you can see the one he’s targeting. It’s difficult to see his lure on the inset screen, but it’s clear Johnson can see his jig in relation to the fish. At times the crappie is so close to the boat that he must grab his rod in the middle to keep the lure in front of the fish.

Photos from Zeke Anderson and Dillon Hackler Facebook pages

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