The 19th annual event took place July 13 and 14 and no one could have asked for better weather or better fish. The tournament consisted of 29 Pro Division teams as well as 10 Amateur Division teams and took place out of the ports of Oswego and Mexico. The calm and sunny Saturday 6 a.m. shotgun-start began the two-day tournament.
With 10 points per fish, plus a point per pound, Tall Tails Sportsfishing Charters pulled through with the Pro Division win by weighing the maximum twelve fish per day. The Cortland-based team that claims Oswego harbor as their home port garnered a two-day total score of 572.52 points and won $7,000 in cash and merchandise.
"This is our first big tournament win," said Captain Brian Garrett. "On Saturday, we caught eight kings and four browns which brought our team to the top."
Captain Vince Pierleoni of Newfane, NY missed his full complement of 12 fish Sunday but his two-day score of 528.28 points was enough to keep his team in second and landed $4,000 in cash and merchandise. Free Spirit/Top Gun, captained by Greg Gehrig of Oswego, took third with 506.60 points and $2,500 in cash and merchandise.
The Amateur Division had its fair share of close competition as well. The team Second Nature took first place with a two-day total score of 352.50 points weighing in a maximum of nine fish on Saturday and only three fish on Sunday. The team did catch the second-biggest salmon caught by the Amateur Division weighing 29.52 pounds. The captain, Eric King, of Oswego, and his crew took home $1,500 in cash and merchandise.
Hook N Up, a perennial contender out of Mountaintop, Pa., took second place with a two-day total score of 303.29 points and won $1,000 in cash and merchandise. Trouble Shooter finished third with 294.41 points and won $500 in cash and merchandise.
The tournament also consisted of a Pro-Am category for Big Fish which included steelhead, brown trout and salmon. In the Pro Division, the Praying Mantis Sportfishing team out of Pulaski won the prize for the biggest salmon weighing in at 31.44 pounds. Tony Chatt's 5 More Minutes team from West Monroe caught the biggest brown trout weighing in at 15.71 pounds and Thrillseeker II caught the biggest steelhead at 9.35 pounds. Big Fish winners in the Amateur Division included Warship with the biggest salmon at 29.67 pounds and Trouble Shooter with the biggest brown trout at 15.16 pounds.
The tournament for both the Pro and Amateur Divisions concluded Sunday behind the Quality Inn and Suites in Oswego. There were 26 sponsors for the tournament with Fat Nancy's Tackle Shop and Brookfield Power being the primary sponsors. Other sponsors included A-Tom-Mik, Best Western Hotel, Burke's Home Center, Dreamweaver, Dunkin' Donuts, Eagle Beverage, Fish Hawk, Great Lakes Tackle, ITO Flies, KG Signs, Lake Ontario Outdoors, Lupien's Engraving, Michigan Stinger, MOOR Electronics, NBT Bank, New York Outdoor News, Northern King, Ocean LED, The Palladium Times, Pathfinder Bank, Quality Inn & Suites, Robert M. Cinelli Inc., Shark Cannonballs and West Marine.
The 20th Annual Oswego Pro-Am Tournament will be held July 12 and 13 of next year.
For information, go to http://www.lakeontarioproam.net/.