Van Houten Wins Bass Fishing Tournament on Mississippi River


CLINTON, Iowa (June 7, 2004) - Boater Mike Van Houten of Ankeny earned $4,015 Saturday as winner of the Bass Fishing League Great Lakes Division bass fishing tournament on the Mississippi River near Clinton. The tournament was the second of five regular-season Great Lakes Division events and featured 149 boaters vying for the win, which earned Van Houten 200 points in the Boater Division.
   Van Houten's winning catch of five bass weighed 17 pounds, 4 ounces. Included in that stringer was a 4-pound, 9-ounce bass that earned Van Houten $745 as the Boater Division big-bass award winner.
   Finishing second was Dave Getz of Park Ridge, Ill., with five bass weighing 15 pounds, 8 ounces that earned him $2,008. Curtis Samo of Rochelle, Ill., claimed $1,365 as the third-place finisher thanks to five bass weighing 13 pounds, 14 ounces. In fourth was Marty Clauson of Montello, Wis., with five bass weighing 13 pounds, 10 ounces worth $1,044, and finishing fifth and earning $883 was Steven Johnson of Lake Villa, Ill., with five bass weighing 13 pounds, 9 ounces.
   Getz earned a $500 bonus from Ranger Boats as the highest-finishing participant in the Ranger Cup incentive program.
   John Essmann of Elkhorn, Wis., bested 141 Co-angler Division competitors to earn $1,926 as the co-angler winner, thanks to four bass weighing 11 pounds, 5 ounces.
   Rounding out the top five co-anglers are Florian Litzinger of Eagan, Minn. (four bass, 11 pounds, $963); Tim Whitmore of Des Moines (five bass, 10 pounds, 9 ounces, $655); Charlie Benson of La Crosse, Wis. (four bass, 9 pounds, 13 ounces, $501); and Jeff Turner of Plainfield, Ill. (four bass, 9 pounds, 10 ounces, $424).
   Litzinger earned $353 as the co-angler big-bass award winner with a 4-pound, 8-ounce bass.
   The Great Lakes Division's next event will be held July 10 on the Wolf River Chain near Winneconne, Wis., followed by an event on the Mississippi River in Prairie du Chien, Wis., Aug. 7. The Great Lakes Division will wrap up its regular season Sept. 11-12 with a two-day Super Tournament on the Mississippi River near La Crosse, Wis.

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