Wyoming Pro Wins $64,000 PWT Tournament
Aug 27th, 2005 by OutdoorsFIRST
Modified Aug 27th, 2005 at 12:00 AM
With a great final day catch, Wyoming pro Terry Wilson won his first In-Fisherman Professional Walleye Trail tournament and $64,000. With nearly 49 pounds for the 3-day Lund/Outdoor Channel Pro-Am, Wilson topped the elite field of PWT pro anglers. He did it by fishing about 35 miles south of Sault Ste. Marie on the St. Mary’s River. Anglers fished all of the river, bays and lakes including in front of the PWT stage in town. Many found walleyes relating to weeds in Lake George, while the main channel edges in 24 to 30 feet produced also. Some anglers found fish very shallow in 7 to 8 feet. Most dragged some form of bottom bouncers and livebait. Tony Puccio hooked Gulp! nightcrawlers from Berkley so they were weedless, and ran spinners and Gulp! through the weeds. He won his second Berkley Artificial Intelligence $500 award for his innovative tactics.This is Wilson’s third check of the season, for a total of $70,000 in earnings. He is one of the 52 anglers headed to the Mercury Championship in Kansas. Leading the parade of anglers to Kansas is Johnsonville Brats Angler of the Year Mike Gofron, Antioch, Ill. This is his second Angler title, among his many accomplishments, including 31 top 10-place finishes, a PWT record. He won $25,000 from Johnsonville Brats, plus $10,000 from Mercury Outboards.At Sault Ste. Marie, pro Ernie Olson, Foley, Minn., won $20,000 for second place. Olson won the Gerbing’s Hot Pro award for his strong finish. The Gerbing’s heated foul weather suit ($500) will keep this 4-season angler warm. He also won $500 cash. Pro Ken Zmudzinski, Jenison, Mich. was third, for $13,000. Both were personal bests. The top amateur was Chuck Warner, Goetzville, Mich. about 45 minutes away on Raber Bay. He won a $17,000 Lund/Mercury boat on an E-Z Loader trailer. Amateurs fished three days, with a different pro each day, using the pro’s gear and tackle, for a combined boat-weight. They could bring five walleyes to the scales each day.Pro Rick Franklin, Park Rapids, Minn., and amateur/co-angler Steve Graham, Harbor Springs, Mich., caught the Coleman Big Fish of the tournament, 6.14 pounds and split $1,000. Pro Mark Sak, Imlay City, Mich., won the Navionics Spot on the Spot $500 award for anchoring and fishing a key spot for limits on the final two days. He also advanced 73 places to win the Coleman Cool Under Pressure award. Shannon Kehl, Menoken, ND won the Dave’s Ka-Boom “Close Call” award of $500 for finishing 41st. Amateur Mike Johnson, Niagara, Wis., placed highest in the MotorGuide East Division and won the Pflueger Top Stick award of two matched President spinning reels and rods. He also won a trip to the Mercury Championship representing all amateurs who competed this season. He will captain his boat and fish against the pros who taught him all season long. He won a Mercury 9.9-hp outboard valued at $2,500. He had first, 12th and20th place finishes. Pro Tom Kemos, Oconomowoc, Wis., driving the Optima Batteries boat, won the MotorGuide East Division. He earned a $1,500 MotorGuide trolling motor and a $2,000 SnowSport snowplow. He will lead the East Division top 10 pros to Kansas. The complete list of pros invited to the Championship will be posted on www.professionalwalleyetrail.com. The schedule for the activities will also be posted. The public is invited to join the best tournament anglers when they fish Milford Lake near Junction City, Kansas, Sept. 16-18.Rookie pro Chase Parsons cashed checks in five of six tournaments and earned PWT Rookie of the Year honors. The PWT television series will begin airing the final week of September and run through March 2006. It runs three times per week on the Outdoor Channel.Quality Inn & Suites (906-635-6918), Sault Convention Bureau (800-647-2858), Kewadin Casino (906-632-0530) and these business partners: Mercury Marine, Lund, The Outdoor Channel, Berkley, Optima Batteries, Realtree, MotorGuide, Lowrance, MinnKota, Trilene, Frenzy, Blue Fox, Powerbait, Johnsonville Brats, Northland Fishing Tackle, Lindy Legendary Fishing Tackle, GULP!, Coleman, Storm, Boat Buckle, Smooth Moves Seat Mounts, Kwik Pfyt, E-Z Loader, Raymarine, Rapala, Matzuo, Pflueger, Ram rod holders, Gerbing’s Heated Clothing, Aqua-Vu, Save Phace, Plano, Stowmaster.net, Navionics, Access Roll-up Cover, Yellow Bird, DOW Chemical, Dave’s Lures, The State Bank Group, Yo-Zuri and Reef Runner. The PWT is an integral element of the In-Fisherman Communications Network headquartered in Brainerd, Minnesota, and PRIMEDIA, America’s leading producer of targeted media.