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Outdoors Niagara Exclusive!

Masters Walleye Circuit

Cabela's 2007 Niagara River Walleye
Circuit Held in Youngstown New York on the Niagara River/Lake Ontario July 21-22 2007 

A Picture Story
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Most pictures are here now so take a look
[see below Bill Hilts recap of this event below]

Outdoors Niagara Exclusive and a you saw it here FIRST!

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Local Father & Son team Eric Elenfeldt and 13 year old son Eric Jr. from North Tonawanda,
weighed in 5 fish for the tournament to take in second place and $3,942.00 in cash.
They had a total of 26.62 pounds for their payday.

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Kristine Houtman 
Tournament Director


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Local Anglers Jim Janese [L] & Steve Levering holding up their winning fish. They were awarded a total of $8,090 for their efforts during the Cabela's Masters Walleye Circuit held July 21 & 22 in Youngstown NY . Total weight of the fish was 27.79 # while the big fish Janese is holding went at 10.26#. The lady on the right was the weigh master, the stage announcer, & Tournament Director. Her name is Kristine Houtman & she did a fantastic job for everyone. Janese hails from Youngstown NY & Levering from Niagara Falls . 
The team was sponsored in part by A-1 Bait in Lewiston

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$500.00 Fish!

This duo finished with 5 fish in the box fishing the Niagara Bar at the 20 to 90 feet drop-off.


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Actual weight of the $500.00 fish!

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Jim Janese holding the $500.00 fish Steve Levering and Kristine Houtman looking on

"They used No. 4 willow-leaf blades, hammered silver and copper as well as gold plated. Chartreuse and orange beads worked well with 1 ¾ ounce sinkers." [Trolling and on the bottom]

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+ 500 for the big one

This event carried a $15,280 purse plus $500.0 bonus for biggest fish

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Ron Hutchison owner of A-1 Bait and sponsor of the winning team 
looking on
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Bernadine & Bill Ayers of St. Helen MI, Husband & wife team of the year

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John Hagerman
& Kristine
Third place finishers were Pete Lewis of Webster NY and Shawn Hannah of Tottenham  Ontario.

22.1 pounds and $1,988.00 richer

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13 Year Old Eric Elenfeldt        
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Captain Jim Gordon
Gordon was fishing with famed Joe Augustyniak They won two PFD'S as a sponsorship award

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Part of onlookers

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Doug Yohe [L] Bradford PA. & Tim Waltz, Williamsport PA
Ranger Boats  & Toyota each awarded bonus' of $1,000.00 each to whoever was driving a Toyota Tundra Angler pickup or owns a Ranger Boat.

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Team Starcraft $1,000.00 winners

A Youth & Family Fishing Clinic was held on Saturday and over 50 kids attended with their families. Rods and reels along with essential terminal tackle for slip float fishing were donated by MWC sponsors such as Cabela’s, Lowrance Electronics, North American Fishing Club and Ranger Boats. Toyota donated three new bikes that the anglers rigged with rod holders for the kids. The lucky winners were:

* Zachery Siegle, age 7, from Hopedale, Massachusetts, attended with Grandfather Kenneth Greulich of Youngstown

* Michael Allender, age 7, from Youngstown, New York, son of Dave & JoAnn Allender

* Jacob Meagher, age 9, from Youngstown, New York, son of Daniel & Bonnie Meagher



Cabella's  Masters Walleye Tournament Niagara River/Lake Ontario Youngstown NY!
July 21 - 22 2007
This is a new stop for the Cabela's  MWC, an East Division event on the 
Lower Niagara River & Western Basin of Lake Ontario.  
Click logo to go to website!

Bill Hilts Jr. Recap on this Tournament:

Niagara Outdoors for Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Levering, Janese Win MWC Tourney In Divine Fashion

By Bill Hilts, Jr.

The first Cabela's Masters Walleye Circuit (MWC) competition ever held in Youngstown couldn't have been scripted any better. Then again, maybe it was being scripted all along. Last Wednesday, MWC tournament officials rolled into town in the shadow of the Bassmaster Elite Series in Buffalo. Fort Niagara and Youngstown would be their base of operations for the event scheduled for July 21-22 in the Lower Niagara River and Lake Ontario. 

With 27 teams competing for the purse of $15,680, the stage was set. For Jim Janese of Youngstown and Steve Levering of Niagara Falls, the tournament couldn't have started any worse. At 9 a.m. on Saturday, an official tournament boat motored up to their team 16 to give Levering the sad news that his father, Bob Levering of Niagara Falls, had just passed away. He left the water to spend time with his sister and other family members. Janese continues to fish, but admitted that he just couldn't focus for the remainder of the day. Their team zeroed for day one. 

On the flip side, though, fishing was tough. A north wind combined with excessive amounts of bait in the river contributed to only half of the teams catching fish. Ohio team Matt Davis and Dan Gies brought two fish to the scales, including a 7.99 pound big fish for the day, to lead the pack 14.68 pounds of walleye. It was still anyone's tournament. Day two was a bit more favorable for the teams looking to catch some local walleye. 

The first team to weigh in was the father and son duo of Eric Elenfeldt Sr. and Jr. of North Tonawanda. They brought a five-fish limit to the stage and weighed in 22.76 pounds of walleye for the day. Combined with their day one total, they vaulted to the lead with 26.62 pounds of fish. "We fished worm harnesses on the Niagara Bar," said 13 year old Eric, Jr. Then it was the waiting game. Would their catch hold up? 

Sixteen other teams brought fish to the scales. Janese and Levering were the last team up - and they had a tournament limit of five fish. They placed the fish on the scale and the digital readout flashed 27.79 pounds. They did it! They had some from zero to hero to win the MWC tournament in dramatic fashion, with a bit of divine intervention to help them along. "This one was for dad," said an emotional Levering on the stage before a couple hundred locals who turned out for the weigh-in. It was a bittersweet victory for the duo, fishing their first ever MWC event to win a check for $8,090 plus an extra $500 for big fish, a 10.26 hawg that was the difference in the win. They trolled worm harnesses on the bottom around the green buoy marker to take all their fish. What an ending! 

We're confident that MWC will be back in the future. Maybe not next year, but they'll be back to give this Niagara River and Niagara Bar another try. When they do, one of the big reasons will be the tremendous hospitality and cooperation they received from the local community. The Village of Youngstown opened their arms to embrace this event and Mayor Neil Riordan was an integral component to the success of the event. The Niagara River Anglers Association supplied the volunteer support and they did an outstanding job answering the call. Mike George was even on hand to cook fish on Sunday for the spectators. In turn, MWC presented a check for $420 to the fishing club, to be used for their walleye rearing pond project on Balmer Road in the Town of Porter. Fort Niagara State Park was also a big player in the success of the contest, working with tournament officials to ensure a smooth event all the way around. To find out more information on the Masters Walleye Circuit and a complete list of scoring for the Youngstown event (which happened to be the final tournament in the East Division for 2007), log on to