The whole thing sounds bizarre to me. Do you only have your trigger finger left on your right hand or are you putting us on?
Nope, no bull. It wasn't easy and I wasn't aiming, but I wrapped my shooting hand around the trigger guard portion of the lever and pulled the trigger. This was to minimize interference with the lever in case it was recoil and my hand that was opening the lever.
That was, until I realized that Model 94's are designed to fire with pressure on the lever (which is now what I assume holds the bolt closed). I'm not used to this, as the Marlins 336's I have don't require pressure on the lever. You just have to make sure the action is closed. The post in the link I provided (leverguns.com) lead me to believe that the same thing had happened to C. Cash, so I duplicated his test.
Just looking for confirmation that the Winchester Model 94 is designed to fire with firm pressure on the lever against the stock and that IF it fired without such pressure, the bolt would surely open.