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The Muskie Country Tournament Circuit™ (MCTC™) hosted two qualifying tournaments over the weekend with the Eagle River Chain event on Saturday, July 27th and the Sand/Dam Lake Chain tourney on Sunday, July 28th. While the area experienced record cold air tempters for both tournaments, the extreme cold fronts didn't deter either the competing anglers, or the resident muskies from “active duty", resulting in big averages for both events and plenty of action to go around the field of competitors. Eight muskies over thirty four inches (34") would be scored at the Eagle River tournament that averaged nearly forty and a half inches (40.50") per fish and six muskies over thirty four inches would be registered at the Sand/Dam Lake Chain that had a forty and a quarter inch (40.25") average.

“You never feel the cold when your fishing for muskies" is a saying that was put to its test for the competing teams by a record cold front and a cold driving rain on Saturday at the MCTC™ qualifying event on the Eagle River Chain. However, the determination and fortitude of the highly skilled muskie competitors would prevail in the conditions that most anglers wouldn't attempt to wash their boat in. It wouldn't take long, just twenty five minutes into the contest, before the first muskie would be registered by Kyle Weber and Jorden Gustman with a 40.25 incher at 6:25am. As the conditions worsened with the skies darkening and heavier rains, the muskie activity would shut down. It became evident as the day progressed that during the brief moments of relief, when the skies would brighten and the rains halted, the muskies would respond favorably and opportunities would present themselves. At 8:15am, David Godin and John Cestkowski would score on a 41.50" muskie. Ben Peterson and Clay Heller would tally a 41.25 incher at 8:37am but the duo weren't done yet as they doubled with a 38" fish at 11:30am resulting in the only team to score two giving them the victory. The big fish of the day would be measured by Justin Reynolds and Ryan Reynolds with a 42.50 incher at 11:22am.

Other teams to score on muskies for the MCTC™ Eagle River qualifier were; Dave Castonia & Steve Tilque 42" at 9:13am, Phil Markgraf & Randy Kauranen 40.50" at 1:35pm, and Ron & Ryan Meyer 37.25" at 1:56pm.

The MCTC™ Eagle River tournament top five finishers were;
1st - Ben Peterson/Clay Heller
2nd - Justin & Ryan Reynolds
3rd - Dave Castonia & Steve Tilque
4th - David Godin/John Cestkowski
5th - Phil Margraf/Randy Kauranen

Record cold still persisted at Sunday's event but like the previous event, the fish were still active with some size. Don Groskopf and Prescott Mahner wouldn't waste any time getting started and by 6:32am they would score a 37.50 incher but the duo wasn't finished there as they would double up and be finished for the day at 8:29am with a dandy 42.25 incher that seemingly gave them a demanding lead with 79.75 inches that would be hard to beat. Two muskies would be registered before the leaders were doubled up however, at 8:08am Neil Barnett and Ryan Wahlgren scored on a 41 incher and Ryan & Ron Meyers would measure a 36.25" muskie at 8:21am. The Largest muskie of the day would be tallied by Bob Dekker and Chip Bottrell at 11:30am with a 43 inch lunker. The lead would change hands for the fourth and final time of the day when Barnett and Wahlgren scored on a 41.50 incher at 1:31pm, giving the duo 82.5 inches and the victory.

The MCTC™ Sand/Dam Lake Chain top four finishers were;
1st - Neil Barnet/Ryan Wahlgren
2nd - Don Groskopf/Prescott Mahner
3rd - Chip Bottrell/Bob Dekker
4th - Ron & Ryan Meyer

The next tournament for the World Muskie Tournament Series™ is a Pro-MAC™ qualifier on the Three Lakes Chain August 3rd & 4th. The tournament will start at 6:00am and finish up at 3:00pm Saturday and 6:00am to noon on Sunday. The cost to compete in a Pro MAC™ tournament is $330 per team for each event. The Three Lakes Chain Muskie Summit Open™ tournament is scheduled to pay down ten places with a first place prize equaling $20,000.00 with a full field of participants. The Three Lakes Muskie Summit Open™ has some open spots and there is still time to send in your entries to get an earlier starting position. We will also be accepting entries for either event the Friday before the tournaments, August 2nd, at Jakes Bar and Grill on HWY 32 in Three Lakes from 5:30pm to 7:30pm. The ease out location for the tournament on both days will be in the middle of the chain on Medicine Lake at Pine Isle Pub.

All WMT Series™ events are open to the public and we hope you will join in on the fun and excitement. For additional information, log on to our web sites at or for more details or email us at or call 715-277-4411.

Sponsor Partners of the 2013 WMT Series™ are; Tooth Tamer Rods, Fittante Taxidermy, Tackle Industries Super D, T's Tackle, Dream Catcher Bucktails, Yakima Baits, , Optimum Baits, River Run Tackle, Trophy Hunter Accessories-Glittertail, Musky Mayhem Tackle, Figure 8 Lures, Lil' Hustler Tackle, Tyrant, Man Cave Bait Co., and Nauti Lures, LLC.

© 2012 Muskie Country Tournament Circuit