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Published February 14, 2011, 07:33 PM

Thousands Compete in Fishless MN Tournament

Thousands of anglers turned out for the 11th annual Alexandria Ice Fishing Challenge over the weekend, but the fish stayed away

By: Associated Press,

ALEXANDRIA, Minn. (AP) — Thousands of anglers turned out for the 11th annual Alexandria Ice Fishing Challenge over the weekend, but the fish stayed away.

About 2,200 anglers came to Lake Agnes in Alexandria Saturday for what is billed as Minnesota's second-largest ice fishing tournament. But remarkably, no one caught a fish during the three-hour contest.

Each of the top 100 finishers were to receive at least $100 in prize money, with a top prize of $10,000 for the biggest fish caught.

Event co-chair Eddie Reif (reyef) tells KSAX-TV that the one thing organizers could not control was the fish — "unfortunately, they just didn't bite."

DNR area fisheries supervisor Dean Beck says the lake was well stocked with fish and there was a good supply of oxygen in the water, but low barometric pressure and a quick temperature rise could have kept fish from biting.

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