FOX SPORTS

Pace wins Bassmasters, $500K

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TULSA, Okla. (AP)

Cliff Pace won the Bassmasters Classic on Sunday, finishing with a three-day catch of 54 pounds, 12 ounces at Grand Lake O' the Cherokees.

Sean Connery is pumped

RIGHT ON!

Sean Connery is fired up about the US Open. And he is pretty hyped about these things, too.

The 32-year-old Pace, from Petal, Miss., earned $500,000 for his first victory in the event.

"This is a gift that I will always cherish," Pace said after claiming his first Classic trophy at his fifth Classic appearance. "This is the ultimate high of a career, a life-changing moment."

Brandon Palaniuk of Rathdrum, Idaho, was second at 51-8, followed by Hank Cherry, Maiden, NC, at 49-0.

Pace overcame changing fishing conditions that included snow, rain and below-freezing temperatures, finishing at 21-8 Friday and 21-12 Saturday before slipping to 11-8 Sunday.

He caught only four bass Sunday, one shy of the five-fish limit, and went 5-1/2 hours without a bite.

"Then I pulled up to a place and caught two on back-to-back casts. That gave me four," Pace said. "My day today was really hard. I caught two in the first hour and didn't get another bite until about 1:30."

Pace said his winning lures were Jackall jerkbaits — a Squad Minnow and a Soul Shad — and a Jackall DD Cherry crankbait in a crawdad color. He also used a half-ounce B&M Football Jig with a V&M Twin Tail trailer in green pumpkin. He dipped the trailer's plastic tails in orange dye for greater visibility in the stained water.

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