Lake Erie Readies for YETI FLW College Fishing Northern Conference Finale - Major League Fishing

Lake Erie Readies for YETI FLW College Fishing Northern Conference Finale

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Calm winds and a beautiful sunrise welcome anglers to Sandusky on day one of the Rayovac FLW Series on Lake Erie. Photo by David A. Brown.
August 29, 2017 • FLW Communications • Archives

SANDUSKY, Ohio – YETI FLW College Fishing is heading to Lake Erie on Sept. 9 for the third and final regular-season stop in the Northern Conference. A full field of college fishing clubs will be competing for the top award of a $2,000 club scholarship and a berth into the 2018 College Fishing National Championship.

“Fishing on Lake Erie in September can be pretty tough, but we can still expect to see some nice limits in this tournament,” said bass-fishing columnist and owner of Millennium Promotions Joe Balog, who has 14 top-10 finishes on Lake Erie in Costa FLW Series and T-H Marine Bass Fishing League competition. “The deep-structure smallmouth can be fickle and it can be tough to catch a limit. If a team made the decision to target largemouth, it could be a good idea.”

Balog said that the smallmouth would be found on the traditional deep-structure – reefs and points in 20- to 35-feet of water – and that anglers fishing deep would all be using drop-shot rigs.

“It’s the end of summer on Lake Erie – it will be a 100-percent drop-shot tournament out deep,” Balog said. “A Jackall Crosstail Shad, Yamamoto Shad Shape worm or a Berkley Gulp! Jerk Shad will all be good choices.

“If you catch a smallmouth weighing more than 3½ pounds, it’s not an accident,” Balog continued. “Chances are there are more there – you’ll rarely see one smallmouth alone. If you get one, I’d recommend spending a serious amount of time there.”

For teams that choose to target largemouth, Balog said that anglers would be targeting the heavy vegetation in Sandusky Bay and the adjacent harbors, or the shallow shoals on the main lake.

“You can definitely catch a 15 to 18 pound limit of largemouth,” he said. “Those teams will be frogging and flipping in the vegetation or throwing jigs and Carolina rigs in the shallow shoals.

“I think the winning team will likely need 19 pounds,” Balog went on to say.

Anglers will take off from the Shelby Street Public Boat Launch, located at 101 Shelby St., in Sandusky, at 7 a.m. EDT Saturday. Weigh-in will be held at the boat launch beginning at 3 p.m. Takeoff and weigh-in are free and open to the public.

Schools are allowed to register up until the morning of the tournament. Entries may be made either by phone or at

Schools registered to compete in the Lake Erie tournament, which is hosted by the City of Sandusky and Lake Erie Shores & Islands, include:

Bowling Green State University – Corey Miller, Perrysburg, Ohio, and Jason Bailey, Port Clinton, Ohio

Fairmont State University – Corey Straight, Barrackville, W.Va., and Jacob Smith, Martinsburg, W.Va.

Kent State University – Zachary Asher, Sunbury, Ohio, and Christian Hylton, Deerfield, Ohio

Mansfield University of Pennsylvania – Jason Heyer, Towanda, Pa., and Kyle Zindell, Jermyn, Pa.

Pennsylvania State University – David Contrael, Kittanning, Pa., and Lance Brosious, Sunbury, Pa.

Pennsylvania State University – Stephen Jesso, Plymouth, Pa., and Tom Oranzi, West Grove, Pa.

Pennsylvania State University-Harrisburg – Ethan Urey, Mechanicsburg, Pa., and George Gendler, Mountaintop, Pa.

Pennsylvania State University-Harrisburg – Chad Burkholder, Palmyra, Pa., and Ryan Fox, Thornhurst, Pa.

Rochester Institute of Technology – Tom Saile and Mark Saile, both of Williamson, N.Y.

Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania – Kyle Brown, Wexford, Pa., and Cody Neal, Evans City, Pa.

Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania – Nathan Quince, Pittsburgh, Pa., and Garrett Godlewski, Imperial, Pa.

Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania – Ryan Kozlowski and Jason Frontino, both of Cranberry Township, Pa.

Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania – Logan Pollman, Slippery Rock, Pa., and Cale Updegrave, Reno, Pa.

University of Delaware – Brennan Chuprinko, Flanders, N.J., and Michael Imbierowicz, Bel Air, Md.

University of Michigan-Dearborn – Austin Klotz and Vincenzo Puleo, both of Westland, Mich.

University of Pittsburgh – Tyler Sheppard, Hermitage, Pa., and Dominic Vitale, Shickshinny, Pa.

University of Pittsburgh – Michael Dunn and Henry Colberg, both of Pittsburgh, Pa.

Youngstown State University – Stan Miketa, New Middletown, Ohio, and Mario Chance, Youngstown, Ohio

FLW College Fishing teams compete in three regular-season qualifying tournaments in one of five conferences – Central, Northern, Southern, Southeastern and Western. The top ten teams from each division’s three regular-season tournaments and the top 20 teams from the annual FLW College Fishing Open will advance to the 2018 FLW College Fishing National Championship. Additional teams will qualify for the National Championship if the field size in regular-season events exceeds 100 boats.

College Fishing is free to enter. All participants must be registered, full-time students at a college, university or community college and members of a college fishing club that is recognized by their school.

For regular updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow College Fishing on Facebook at and on Twitter at Visit to sign up or to start a club at your school.

About FLW

FLW is the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, providing anglers of all skill levels the opportunity to compete for millions in prize money in 2017 across five tournament circuits. Headquartered in Benton, Kentucky, with offices in Minneapolis, FLW conducts more than 258 bass-fishing tournaments annually across the United States and sanctions tournaments in Canada, China, Mexico, South Africa and South Korea. FLW tournament fishing can be seen on the Emmy-nominated “FLW" television show, broadcast to more than 564 million households worldwide, while FLW Bass Fishing magazine delivers cutting-edge tips from top pros. For more information visit and follow FLW at FacebookTwitterInstagramYouTube and Snapchat.

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