Records smashed at final bass tourney

?Nineteen teams took part in the final Sunset Country bass tournament of the year this past weekend at Whitefish Bay on Lake of the Woods.
Weather conditions were not ideal, but some giant bass were brought in over the two-day event. In fact, two major records were not only broken, but absolutely smashed.
I watched as the largest five-fish limit and the biggest bass I’ve ever heard of in Northwestern Ontario came across the scale.
The first record was broken on Day 1 by the 2009 Kenora Bass International champions, Matt Rydberg and Brian McNanney of Sioux Narrows, who took the early lead with a five-fish limit that weighed 25 pounds even.
This was an amazing catch that was at least two pounds bigger than any other limit I’ve ever heard of from around here.
Included in their bag was the Day 1 big bass that weighed six pounds, 10 oz. They also had two other bass that were pushing six pounds.
To put this bag in perspective, in all the days that I’ve spent fun fishing, pre-fishing, and tournament fishing, I’ve never had more than 23 pounds.
To reel in 25 when it counts, on a tournament day, is incredible.
Unfortunately for Rydberg and McNanney, their were unable to crack the 20-pound mark on Day 2. Their 14 pound, two oz. catch was good enough to land them in second place overall with a 39 pound, two oz. total.
The biggest bass I’ve ever heard of coming out of Lake of the Woods was caught on Sunday by the eventual tournament champs, the father-and-son team of Ray and Darren Marcine of Kenora.
Their two-day total of 42 pounds even included a monster largemouth bass that weighed seven pounds, 10 oz. and won the big bass on Day 2.
I got to see this fish and would not have believed how big it was if I hadn’t seen it for myself. It was huge!
The next biggest fish I know of that has been weighed in at a Sunset Country tournament was a 6.82-pound largemouth caught by Norm Lindsay and Jess Swenson at the “Bassin’ For Bucks” tournament out of Sioux Narrows back in 2002.
The Marcines’ fish was nearly a pound bigger than that one. What a pig!
Third place went to three-time KBI champion John Liestman, who was partnered with his wife, Laurel. They brought in solid catches topping18 pounds each day.
I fished with my dad this past weekend and we had a great time, but we couldn’t put any big fish together. We had average 15-pound catches each day and finished in the middle of the pack.
We spent most of our time chasing largemouths—the only problem was that I think the Marcines’ fish ate all of ours.
That wraps up the 2009 bass tournament season here in Sunset Country and what a great year it was. Numerous tournament records were set, the fishing was great despite tough weather at some events, and everybody had fun.
On behalf of all the anglers, thanks to all folks who contributed their time to organize and volunteer at all of the great tournaments this year!

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