UPCOMING EVENT: TOYOTA SERIES - 2020 - Lake Dardanelle

Williams hits the lottery twice

Williams hits the lottery twice
Pete Harsh and Larry Williams caught five walleyes Saturday that weighed 23 pounds, 3 ounces.

DEVILS LAKE, N.D. - Partnering with pro winner Pete Harsh on the final day of a major tournament is like hitting the lottery. But oddly enough, co-angler Larry Williams already won the lottery before he even got to Devils Lake.

As a member of the Fargo-Moorhead Walleyes Unlimited fishing club, Williams won a free co-angler entry into the third Wal-Mart FLW Walleye Tour qualifier on a $5 raffle ticket. Williams actually purchased three raffle tickets for a total of $15, but that minor investment ended up netting him $10,000 in cash.

"I just got really lucky," he said. "It's just bizarre. I hadn't even considered winning or even getting a check for that matter. Is this crazy or what?"

Devils Lake champions Pete Harsh and Larry Williams show off their hardware.Over the course of the tournament, Williams caught 15 walleyes with his pro partners that weighed 62 pounds, 14 ounces. On day one he was partnered with pro Pat Neu and on day three he drew Michigan pro Joe Rossell. On day four, he did the netting while Harsh did the catching.

"I had a great draw today. If you want one person to go with on the final day, it's Pete Harsh, no question. I don't care if your sitting in 10th place, a day with him will get you up the leaderboard."

Williams said he and Harsh had six or seven fish in the livewell that would be the envy of any walleye fisherman. He said the smallest was about 21 inches, and each was caught with slip bobbers and leeches.

"I told my wife that if I did any good at this event, I was going to take her on a nice, relaxing vacation. She has been working really hard and this will be a nice present for her."

The Fargo, N.D., native will return to the area in two weeks for the Devils Lake Chamber of Commerce Walleye Tournament. If Harsh allows him to fish his spots, look out.

Local angler retains second

Coming in second for the co-anglers was local fisherman Jeff Trana of Devils Lake, N.D. Although he fishes as a co-angler, Trana has been making noise this week as a walleye-catching machine on Devils Pro John Renschen and co-angler Jeff Trana came up just short Saturday. Both anglers took second in their divisions.Lake. Perhaps no angler, regardless of division, knows this lake better than Trana, who spends roughly 80 days per year fishing its plentiful waters.

Partnering with second-place pro John Renschen, Trana put his local knowledge to work to the tune of 20 pounds, 12 ounces. He and Renschen caught their day-four fish on black and gold No. 4 Shad Raps in Black Tiger Bay.

He finished the tournament with 60 pounds, 11 ounces, earning a purse of $5,000.

Juntunen slips to third

Co-angler Henry Juntunen of Minot, N.D., fell from first to third with an 8-pound, 14-ounce catch. On Dennis Jeffrey and Henry Juntunen caught just three walleyes Saturday that weighed 8 pounds, 14 ounces.day four, Juntunen fished with pro Dennis Jeffrey. The two caught roughly 25 walleyes by tolling crankbaits down a narrow breakline in Pelican Bay.

Unfortunately, most of the fish were small and since a no-culling rule governs the tournament, the two decided to throw most of the fish back. Juntunen's three-day total weight was 56 pounds, 9 ounces, good for $7,000 thanks to $3,500 in boat and engine contingencies.

"We set our goals at 20-inch walleyes," Jeffrey explained. "I could not afford to keep small fish. Like always, that's a decision that can come back to bite you."

Janota rises to fourth

Dale Janota of Gillette, Wyo., was able to catch five walleyes on Saturday to rise from ninth place to fourth among the co-anglers with a total weight of 55 pounds, 13 ounces. Janota's fourth-place finish earned him $2,500.

Wald ascends to fifth

Fifth place went to Donny Wald of Mandan, N.D., who boated five walleyes that weighed 16 pounds, 14 ounces. Wald's three-day total weight was 54 pounds, 5 ounces, which earned him a check for $3,200, thanks to a $1,000 Ranger contingency bonus.

Rounding out the top 10 co-angler finalists at the FLW Walleye Tour event on Devils Lake:

6th: Philip Zimpel of Plummer, Minn., 54-0, $2,000
7th: Greg Plautz of Muskego, Wis., 53-3, $1,700
8th: Larry Oleson of Wisconsin Rapids, Wis., 52-1, $2,600
9th: David Hosek of White Bear Lake, Minn., 49-0, $1,200
10th: Mike Unger of Norfolk, Neb., 39-11, $1,700

Competition resumes July 11-14 for the final qualifying event of the $2.71 million FLW Walleye Tour season on Bays de Noc in Escanaba, Mich.

Tags: brett-carlson  co-angler-headline  2007-06-06-devils-lake 

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