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Bain: Good and bad

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HOT SPRINGS, Ark. It's kind of good news/bad news for Kim Bain after Day One of the WBT Championship on Lake Hamilton.

Bain, leader of the Toyota Tundra WBT Angler of the Year race, had her third worst day this season in terms of weight with 5 pounds, 5 ounces.

The good news is she's in seventh place, only 2-10 out of the lead.

"Am I happy? I'm happy to go out there and catch a limit," Bain said after the weigh-in on Thursday. "I would have liked them to be a little bit bigger, but I think I can go out and consistently get at least 5 pounds every day not to jinx myself."

The good news for Bain at least is her closest competitor in the AOY race, Cindy Hill, only caught 2-4 and sits in 16th place.

"I'm shocked," said Hill, who lost a 4-pounder as her co-angler tried to get it with the net. "It can happen to anybody."

Bad news: Juanita Robinson, Bain's only other real threat in range to steal the title, caught 6-6 and sits in third.

"I didn't max out," Robinson said. "I've still got plenty of places."

And Robinson said the bad news for Bain might not end there. Her goal is one 10-pound day, and she feels like she could win it. She doesn't care if it comes Friday or Saturday (there is no cut with only 20 anglers competing). She just needs one big day.

"I've been on the fish to do it, they just didn't bite," Robinson said. "I didn't miss anything today. I just think the weather changed, and the front coming through just kind of shut them down."

Good news: Robinson could catch 800,000 more pounds, and as long as Bain holds her position, she'll win the title and a spot in February's Bassmaster Classic, with a chance to show up the boys. She had a 14-point AOY lead coming into the Championship, and now the margin is 17.

Bain's doing everything she can not to think about that opportunity.

"If I do think about it too much, I might feel too much pressure and not fish to my full potential," she said.

What everyone's bag was missing on Day One (except co-angler Debbie Pegoli, who weighed in at 3-10) was a big fish. Both Robinson and Bain will be on a mission to find one during the last two days. The problem for Bain is there are 13 anglers behind her that could snag one and push her down in the standings.

With weights as low as they are, it might only take one big bass to shake things up.

In other words, Bain has to worry that her guaranteed 5 pounds a day won't cut it. But she's determined not to let any other angler's performance  good or bad  affect her approach.

"Come Saturday, if I'm lucky enough and everyone tells me that I'm the one, then I'll scream and shout and cry, but not until that time," she said.

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Visit Bassmaster.com for full coverage of the Women's Bassmaster Tour Championship from Lake Hamilton, Ark., Oct. 23-25, 2008. Daily weigh-ins with live streaming video and real-time leaderboards start at 4:00 p.m. ET.