Let’s go fishin’: Perch Tournament proves a success
by Mike Baxter
Mar 21, 2013 | 1329 views | 0 0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Samara Cortazzo (left), 6, took third place in the youth division at the recent Sand Crab Classic Perch Tournament. She attended with  sister Camille and father Danny. Courtesy photo
Samara Cortazzo (left), 6, took third place in the youth division at the recent Sand Crab Classic Perch Tournament. She attended with sister Camille and father Danny. Courtesy photo
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On March 9, 225 contestants and 30 volunteers came together to fish, have fun and raise money for Monterey Bay Salmon and Trout Project at the Sand Crab Classic Perch Tournament.

The one-day event was held under sunny skies with mixed fishing results.

Perch fishing had been good along the beaches and cliffs of Monterey Bay, although the event brought a mixed bag for perch anglers. The highly sought barred perch that roam the beaches from Aptos to Monterey were tough to find. But anglers that targeted the rocky areas with kelp found success with black and striped perch.

The largest fish overall was taken by Todd Shallenberger a whopping 2-pound, 3-ounce striped perch. This magnificent fish was followed up by Justin Morris and his black perch of equal weight. Justin took second only because of the tie-breaking fact that his fish was shorter in length.

Third place was taken by Matt Michie with a 2-pound striped perch.

The women’s division was taken by a Jennifer Valentine with a 1-pound, 14-ounce striped perch caught while fishing in Monterey.

The title in the youth division was taken by Mathew Jimenez with his 1-pound, 7-ounce striped perch.

There were also some nice barred perch that weighed in at 2 pounds and a great variety of perch that showed up for the final weigh in.

But with fish caught or not, most had fun.

All contestants had a chance at some raffle prizes and silent auction items.

The barbecue crew cooked 150 pounds of tri-tip and 35 half chickens over a bed of oakwood coals.

The event organizers should be able to donate close to $5,000 to the Monterey Bay Salmon and Trout Project.

- Mike Baxter has fished in the Monterey Bay Area since he was a boy and has been a licensed charter boat captain for more than 20 years. Contact him at captmikebaxter@yahoo.com.

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