By GREG MARTIN
Special to the Sun-Gazette
Aug. 4 was an incredible day for the Northeast Panfish League and its third tournament, which was held on Rose Valley Lake in Lycoming County.
The lake has a love-hate relationship with many anglers around the area, but the league participants overcame some of the horror stories about leaving the lake without catching a fish and came to the scales with record weights of panfish.
Rose Valley Lake was choppy most of the day, which isn't surprising here, and wind can make it harder to fish anywhere.
First place went to one of three Bloomsburg teams that entered. Bret Lesnefsky and Lane Bowes decided they would fish near the bottom for perch - and jumbo perch they caught. Their 12 fish weighed 9.09 pounds.
Second place and the lunker pool was won by Ron Andrews, of Woolrich, and Charlie Bauman, of Lock Haven. The biggest fish that this team landed was a 1.62-pound crappie. They weighed in 11 fish for 8.90 pounds.
Many more crappies caught by them and other participants tipped the scales at nearly or over a pound. Even perch over a pound each and big, bull bluegill weighing in as much as 3/4 over a pound were weighed in.
Third place went to the local "Steel Reign" duo, as they call themselves, Buddy Harris, of South Williamsport, and Logan Terry, of Trout Run. They weighed in a nice mix of 12 panfish at 8.29 pounds that secured them a decent payout.
The Northeast Panfish League thanks all its sponsors for jumping aboard and donating so many free lures and other prizes that are handed at each event they hold.
Anyone who is interested in fishing with the NEPL may check out the league's website at www.nepanfish.com or find and "like" the league on Facebook.
The competition will continue in icefishing, too. A tentative 2014 schedule soon will posted on the website.