Williston, ND 8/20/11 – The 2011 Montana Cats Circuit came to a dramatic conclusion over the weekend with the Inaugural Missouri River Catfish Clash in Williston, ND. In the state’s first ever Montana Cats event, there was plenty of familiar faces to go around. Featuring twenty-one teams from Montana, Wyoming, and North Dakota the tournament would prove to be highly competitive. As is customary with all circuit events, the weekend kicked off with a calcutta of the fishing teams. The calcutta and social were sponsored and hosted by the 4-Mile Bar. Following the auction, the rules meeting was conducted by tournament director, Steve Harris, of the Montana Catfish Association.
Anticipation was high on Saturday morning as the teams gathered at Scenic Sports and the Little Muddy boat ramp, respectively. The Missouri River, which had been effected greatly due to record spring rainfalls, had finally dropped to navigable levels and the fisherman were ready to put it all on the line. Tournament hours ran from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. central time and temperatures peeked in the upper seventies. Despite the unseasonably mild weather, the action was hot and heavy for many of the teams. The high waters carved an all new terrain even for the most experienced local anglers, but it didn’t seem to slow the action as the top five teams all weighed in over twenty lbs. Aside from the impressive total weight performances, four cats tipped the scales at over eight pounds as well. Brady Flaten, out of Glasgow, MT, and Nate Molstad, out of Havre, MT put together a day to remember, crushing the field by nearly eight pounds. Their five fish basket, at 34.38 lbs. sets the benchmark very high for future years. This was Nate’s fifth career championship on the Montana Circuit and Brady’s second. The duo’s total weight received a big boost, when Brady landed the big fish of the event, a 9.7 lb. beauty. The big fish, coupled with a tournament championship netted them just over $1,300.00. The local anglers would not go home empty handed, however, as Mindy Degenstein and Matt Degenstein, both of Williston, took home runner-up honors. The husband and wife combo did all their damage from the shore and impressed with their 26.54 lb. basket. Another local squad rounded out the top three as Chase Rehak and Darrin Hanson, also of Williston, weighed in 23.94 lbs.
The first year of the “Clash” was an ultimate success. Any time you can get over twenty teams for an inaugural event it bodes well for the future. Montana Cats fully expects this tournament to continue to grow and plans on it becoming a mainstay on the MT cats circuit for years to come. Weigh-ins were held at Lewis and Clark Bridge and were very well attended. A big thank you goes out to All Awards out of Lewistown, MT., who again provided the trophies for the top two teams as well as the big fish plaque. The Montana Catfish Association and Scenic Sports also awarded three nice rod and reel combos at the conclusion of the weigh-in and award ceremonies. Feel free to join us on August 18th, 2012 for the 2nd Annual Missouri River Catfish Clash.
Pictures for this event can be found here.
|Brady Flaten||9.70 lbs.||Big Fish Award|
|Mindy Degenstein||8.95 lbs.|
|Steve Harris Sr.||8.39 lbs.|
|Darrin Hanson||8.32 lbs.|
|1.||Brady Flaten, Glasgow, MT. – Nate Molstad, Havre, MT.||34.38 lbs.|
|2.||Mindy Degenstein, Williston, ND. – Matt Degenstein, Williston, ND.||26.54 lbs.|
|3.||Chase Rehak, Williston, ND. – Darrin Hanson, Williston, ND.||23.94 lbs.|
|4.||Brady Mueller, Sidney, MT. – Brandon Mueller, Sidney, MT.||22.78 lbs.|
|5.||Brenner Flaten, Wright, WY. – Cole Plouffe, Glendive, MT.||20.14 lbs.|
|6.||Troy Cotter, Sidney, MT. – Mike Licking, Sidney, MT.||19.66 lbs.|
|7.||Chad Mueller, Sidney, MT. – Kyle Mueller, Sidney, MT.||15.64 lbs.|
|8.||Todd Dooley, Sidney, MT. – Randy Hurst, Sidney, MT.||14.83 lbs.|
|9.||Loye Sunness, Epping, ND. – Dana Lutz, Williston, ND.||10.32 lbs.|
|10.||Rubin Indridason, Trenton, ND. – Vern Decoteau, Trenton, ND.||9.52 lbs.|
|11.||Jason Haugen, Williston, ND. – Jason Arnson, Williston, ND.||8.94 lbs.|
|12.||Steve Harris Sr., Sidney, MT. – Lori Nelson, Sidney, MT.||8.39 lbs.|
|13.||Kabe Knutson, Williston, MT. – Jonah Ericson, Williston, ND.||7.15 lbs.|
|14.||Chuck Buxbaum, Sidney, MT. – Kerry O’Dell, Sidney, MT.||6.67 lbs.|
|15.||Jerrel Erickson, Williston, ND. – Hunter Ramsey, Williston, ND.||0 lb.|
|Jesse Williams, Minot, ND. – Ryan Shelkey, Minot, ND.||0 lb.|
|Justin Slarborough, Williston, ND. – Kelly Sanders, Williston, ND.||0 lb.|
|Jonathan Hogan, Rowland Hills, CA. – John Smith, Williston, ND.||0 lb.|
|Mike Gordon, Belgrade, MT. – Gage Gordon, Belgrade, MT.||0 lb.|
|Bill Holler, Williston, ND. – JR Mcdonald, Texas||0 lb.|
|21.||Chad Dawson, Glasgow, MT. – Brady Burgess, Sidney, MT.||0 lb.|
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