On Tuesday, Master Sgt. Tim Rake, of Gatesville, and Donnie Mathes, of Killeen, will attempt to make some area angling history.

According to Dean Thompson, co-owner of Tightlines Premium Fishing Tackle and the sponsor of the Tuesday Night Tournament, no team has ever pulled off the “three-peat.”

Rake-Mathes have won the past two TNT events.

“I was reluctant to discuss it with Tim or Donnie because I didn’t want to jinx them,” Thompson said.

“Last year, Craig Gilbert and Dexter Thompson (both of Killeen) had won the TNT two weeks in a row but were unable to pull of the three-peat.

“Last year, when I mentioned the possibility to Dexter and Craig before they were going for the three-peat, they said ‘Don’t jinx us by talking about it,’” Thompson said. “So afterwards they kidded me that I jinxed them.

“But Donnie Mathes had no problem talking about the three-peat. He told me, ‘If the weather stays the same, we’ll win it next week.’ I said, ‘OK.’”

Thompson said there is no secret to the success of Mathes and Rake.

“They spend a lot of time practicing,” Thompson said. “Donnie practices Thursday evenings and Friday evenings. Tim goes out on Saturdays and Sundays.

“They have their pattern for this heat. They are very good at catching fish in this weather because they are going deep where it’s cooler.

“They’re confident in their pattern. They have been very consistent this year. They put a lot of time in for those three tournament hours.”

Thompson admitted staying neutral next week will be difficult.

“I stay a little bit neutral but I would like to see the guys pull of the three-peat,” Thompson said. “They are No. 1 this season for a reason. They work at it.”

Contact Allan Mandell at amandell@kdhnews.com or 254-501-7566 and read his column at KDHPressbox.com

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