LAST UPDATE 03-01-98
Spring Valley Tournament
March 28/29 1998
Skarlis and Chad Kinkade Masters Walleye Circuit team of the year in
1997 will be defending their title beggining at the Spring Valley opener
Carol Chenier of Gladstone Michigan
holding a couple of fine Illinois River Walleye. Carol competes with
her husband Glenn and are past MWC Husband /Wife Team of the year.
The Cheniers have also qualified for the MWC World Walleye Championship
Walleye circuit opener the 250 team field was filled in just one day
Spring valley Illinois Each year the Masters
Walleye circuit (MWC) sanctions five walleye tournaments throughout the
upper midwest. It's 146th season begins March 28-29 with the
team walleye tournament on the Illinois River at Spring Vally Illinois.
Teams will be competeing for a cash purse of $65,000.00 with $18,000.00
going to the winners. The top 40 teams will share the prize money.
Last years victors, Mel Reichling and Rick Small of Waterton So Dakota
will be back to defend there titile. In 1997 the pair weighed an
allowable 10 fish limit totaling 26.35 lbs, all of which were saugers.They
trolled crankbaits between 10 and 14 feet deep off the north bank 2-2.5
miles upriver from the Bart Landing. The winners stated that most
anglers believe the water to be too cold this time of year to speed troll
crankbaits, but their win proved it's not the case.
according to Bob Kaz Kackowski, MWC Executive Director , "Eighty-eight
teams signed up to fish all five tournaments this year, which put an immediate
dent in the 250 team field. the remaining four events are already
over half filled, so anglers should get their entries in as soon as possible
for these tournaments.
1998 marks the 12th year that the Spring Valleye Walleye Club is hosting
the MWC opener. Club Executive director Bill guerinni also serves
as tournament director, and his volunteer staff of over 200 will be on
hand to make sure the tournament comes off without a hitch. According
to Guerinin "we increased the field from 225 to 250 teams to accomodate
more teams but we still had to turn away quite a few entries.
Though there are afew bigger independent tournaments, the MWC at Spring
Valley has grown to become the largest fishing event in North America that
is associated with a professional tournament trail no matter what the species
At the 1997 Spring Valleye Tourney 959 fish mostly saugers weighting
1,897.50 lbs were caught. Barring inclement weather , this years
bite should be just as good.
As in past years, The Spring Valley Walleye Club will be assisted at
the weight in by staff from Southern Illinois Universtiy and the Illinois
DNR. All tournament fish will be checked by the staffers, then conveyed
to the Illinois hatchery where the fish will be stripped of their eggs
and milt. After recuperation, the fish will be returned to the river
. Their hatched off -spring , thousands of fingerlings , wuill be
released at a later date into Northern Illinois lakes and rivers.
The MWC Conservation Fund will donate $10.00 for each team fishing
the tournament for a total of $2500.00 to the Spring Valley Club.
This money will be used to fund the ongoing river stocking fund and tournament
launch site improvements. To date the MWC Conservation Fund has donated
over $181,000.00 to fisery projects in states where MWC tournaments are
Sources for Illinois River fishing and water conditions are Riverside
Marine in spring Valley telephone #(815-663-8361) and Cajun Sporting Goods
in Utica Illinois telephone # (815-667-4222). For further information
contact Bill Guerinin at (815-663-6141)
Opening still exist for the remaining MWC tournaments Contact "KAZ"
at the MWC at 414-761-0657 for more
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