UPCOMING EVENT: TOYOTA SERIES - 2020 - Ft. Gibson

Arnoldussen closes door on competition, walks away $87,000 richer

Arnoldussen closes door on competition, walks away $87,000 richer
Dean Arnoldussen and Joseph Fallaw caught five walleyes on the final day that weighed 29 pounds, 10 ounces, good for first place.

PORT CLINTON, Ohio - With the wind cooperating, the majority of the final 10 FLW Walleye Tour pros were excited to receive one more day of fishing. Dean Arnoldussen, the leader after day three, was not one of those anglers.

On day four, however, Arnoldussen saved his best for last and staved off an intense push from Russell McDonald by catching five walleyes that weighed 29 pounds, 10 ounces. McDonald held the lead until Arnoldussen reached for his last fish, a 9-pound, 5-ounce giant. For his efforts, Arnoldussen captured an $87,000 first-place purse.

Pro Dean Arnoldussen displays his first-place check for $87,000.Arnoldussen's four-day total weighed 85 pounds, 9 ounces. McDonald, his closest competitor, was 4 pounds, 5 ounces behind.

"I was praying for wind last night, but we didn't get it," gasped Arnoldussen. "We went through 16 fish today. We were pulling Northland holographic spinners tipped with night crawlers at about 1 to 1.2 mph."

The Appleton, Wis., resident was left in suspense until McDonald weighed his last fish. "I thought I had about 30 pounds coming in today," he said. "Once I saw he (McDonald) was under 30, I knew I had it."

Arnoldussen then went on to tell an incredible story about his biggest fish of the day. "Our big fish came at about 9 or 9:30 in the morning. I'm not even going to say what I was doing when it bit. Needless to say, my partner handled it."

McDonald gets his wish, finishes in second

McDonald's one wish was to get one more chance at catching Arnoldussen, and it came true Saturday. Although he ultimately came up short, McDonald gave a valiant effort and caught five walleyes that weighed 27 pounds even.

Russell McDonald and Dale Todd hold up three Lake Erie walleyes that put them both in second place."I'm happy I got the opportunity to go out today and try and get the win," said McDonald. "I saw him catch that real big one, so I knew I needed to do well. Today, I needed one kicker fish and it just didn't happen."

McDonald described the technique he was using: "I was pulling spinners at about .8 to 1 mph, just barely turning the blade."

The technique netted McDonald a total of 81 pounds, 4 ounces of walleyes and a check for $41,000.

Neu grabs third

Patrick Neu moved up from sixth to third place with a weight of 23 pounds, 4 ounces. Neu, a Forestville, Wis., native, was one of only a handful of anglers to catch a five-walleye limit each day, posting a four-day total of 70 pounds, 9 ounces.

Patrick Neu lifts one of his five walleyes from day four, while Dan Coyer and Mark Dorn look on."Consistency is important in these events," said Neu. "Today we lost four fish before we even got one in."

Neu's efforts earned him $22,500.

Lacourse takes fourth

Richard Lacourse and Daniel Maix show off their largest walleye from day four.Finishing in fourth place was Port Clinton, Ohio, native Richard Lacourse. Lacourse caught five walleyes Saturday, bringing his four-day total to 70 pounds even.

Lacourse's fourt- place finish earned him $17,700.

Schuitema fifth

Mark Schuitema and Corey Rost caught five walleyes that weighed 22 pounds, 11 ounces on day four.Mark Schuitema earned $10,800 and finished in fifth place with a four-day total weight of 67 pounds, 7 ounces. Schuitema's day-three catch of 37 pounds, 6 ounces stood as the largest sack of the tournament. On Saturday, Schuitema managed a limit of 22 pounds, 11 ounces.

To trigger his bites, the Jenison, Mich., resident employed a unique trolling strategy.

"We were running deep-diving Reef Runners at about 2.1 mph. Sometimes we would run them as fast as 2.6 mph. Other times, we would almost just drift. We just continuously varied our speed."

Rest of the best

Rounding out the top 10 pro finalists at the FLW Walleye Tour event on Lake Erie:

6th: Mike Hiser of Pickerington, Ohio, 64-15
7th: Dan Plautz of Muskego, Wis., 63-4
8th: Greg Schenecker of Watertown, S.D., 61-4
9th: Larry Lambert of Lakeside Marblehead, Ohio, 60-8
10th: Joe Whitten of Toledo, Ohio, 43-9

FLW Walleye Tour competition resumes May 18-21 on Green Bay in Green Bay, Wis.

Tags: brett-carlson  headline-story  2005-04-27-lake-erie 

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