United Way comes out a winner at pro-am

There were winners aplenty last Saturday as the 12th annual Muransky Companies Bass Classic crowned two championship teams and raised nearly $20,000 for the United Way of Youngstown and the Mahoning Valley.

Contested on Aqua Ohio’s bass-filled Evans and Pine lakes, the pro-am tournament is an annual fundraiser supported by pro bass anglers from throughout Ohio and from as far away as Birmingham, Ala., as well as local angling enthusiasts and business and professional people.

The pro and amateur fishermen won because of the great day of fishing and friendship, as did the more than 300 children who turned out for the Kids Fish ’N Fun event associated with the pro-am. And the community agencies that benefit from the money provided by the United Way were big winners, too.

Hank Mattern of Kent and Mike Miglets of Youngstown hauled the heaviest limit of bass to the pro-am tournament’s scales. Their weight of 15.81 pounds topped all Evans Lake contenders, as well as those who competed in the Pine Lake division of the pro-am Bass Classic.

Ray Halter of Brecksville and Al Hustosky sacked 14.71 pounds to win the Pine championship.

Halter also won the prize for biggest bass among Pine Lake pro anglers, with a 5.04-pound largemouth, while Phil Dennison of Canfield won the amateur big-bass honors with his 3.96-pounder.

Big bass at Evans was the 4.55-pound fish caught by pro Austin Dunlap, while amateur big bass there was the 3.35-pounder hooked by Larry Olson of The Muransky Companies.

The United Way pro-am Bass Classic has become a “must” event on the local calendars of more than 100 anglers, and sponsors have returned year after year to make the event profitable.

The total cash raised over the history of the event now tops $150,000, and the fishermen and sponsors deserve hearty congratulations for making that happen.

Organizers announced next year’s Muransky Companies Bass Classic will be June 2. For entry information, call Tara Mady at the Youngstown United Way office, 330-746-8494.

Workshop covers basics

Perhaps you are thinking this is the year when you’ll finally learn what this fishing thing is all about. If so, here’s good news: Ohio Division of Wildlife is offering a short course titled — naturally enough — “Basics of Fishing.”

The class will be June 28 from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Division of Wildlife office at Portage Lakes in Akron. Registration is required, though there is no fee. Call Jamey Graham at 330-245-3020 to register.

Participants will learn about fish life, fish identification, habitat, equipment selection and rigging, and other useful information.

The class will include an opportunity for children age 15 and under to fish in the popular youth fishing ponds at North Reservoir. Well-stocked and easily accessible, the ponds are a great place to learn fishing skills. Bait and equipment will be provided to youngsters.

Adults cannot fish in the youth area, but public access to other fishing water is available within a short walking distance.


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