Mini field at Mini-Classic
Written by Post-Tribune   
Monday, 27 April 2009 07:58
Michigan City -- Compared to years past, the field of 33 teams that entered the Hoosier Coho Club Mini-Classic on Saturday was small. Last year, there were more than 80 entrants. Some will say the economy was a large factor in the less than stellar turnout, while others will attribute the diminished entries to the entry fees themselves, which were more than double the fees of last year.

Those that did participate were treated to warm temperatures, windy conditions and plenty of fish, including a large catch of chinook salmon.

"The chinook fishing this spring has been phenomenal," noted charter boat captain Steve Kreighbaum, who took third place among the sixteen teams that were in the Pro Division. "There is a lot of baitfish right out front of Michigan City that are attracting the salmon."

Winning the Pro Division was the team aboard "Saluki's Pride" which checked in 10 chinook that weighed 139 pounds. Kevin Bachner of Chicago, who co-charters with Ian Stewart, said they struck luck right away on Saturday morning.

"We took three kings (chinook salmon) right away that gave us some weight, including one that weighed 18.05 pounds," Bachner said. "It was so windy that when we tried to fish with seven lines we started to get tangles, so we just fished with five. We even used a wind sock to slow our drift and once we completed a drift, we turned around and went back and fished the same direction."

Bachner said they fished depths between 42 to 55 feet of water and that all of the fish caught were hooked close to the bottom. Kevorkian Spoons and Blue Dolphins were the hot lures that hit pay dirt for Saluki's Pride's team.

Winning the Amateur Division in a field of 17 teams was Carter Elenz of Michigan City. Two years ago Elenz won both the Mini Classic and the Classic amateur divisions. Last year Elenz placed second and third in the respective divisions.

"What made it very special winning this year was that my team included my dad, Jerry, and my son Eric," he said. "It was the first time that the three generations had an opportunity to fish a tournament together."

Fishing to the west of the entrance to Trail Creek, Elenz's team fished in 50 to 55 feet of water, with most of their 10 chinook being caught some forty feet down. Much like the winners of the Pro Division, their top baits were also Kevorkian's and Blue Dolphins.

The two-day Hoosier Coho Club Classic event is scheduled for next weekend.
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