Posted on July 17th, 2017
Well the 30th Annual Ocean City Tuna Tournament hosted by the Ocean City Fishing Center is in the books and it was an awesome event to witness and to cover for Hooked on OC. 88 boats fished this year’s event competing for almost $800,000 in prize money and it was an exciting three days of fishing. Big thanks go out to Rolfe Gudelsky, Brian Tinkler, Jennifer Blunt, Ed “Greenie” Green, Dave “Coconut” Hedges, Jessica Pollmeier, Mike Peake, Jim Krall, Jake Widgeon and all of the staff of the Ocean City Fishing Center for putting on a terrific event. HUGE thanks go out to Dave Messick of Hooked on OC for some awesome shots of this weekend’s event. I just got back from an exciting third and final day with some leaderboard changes and here’s how it breaks down.
The crew of the Legasea with Captain Josh Ruskey at the helm held on to win the wahoo category with a nice 55 pound wahoo caught yesterday.
Saturday really was for the boys as Captain Austin Ensor and the #gang caught the first place dolphin yesterday on board the Primary Search. Austin and crew will cash a #check for just over $20,000….and you know this mahi and their big bluefin on Sunday were caught on their JPR Custom rods.
Third place in the stringer category was my buddy Curtis Macomber on his Stalker with Captain Steve Moore. Curtis and the boys added one more fish to the stringer today and it was good enough for third place with a weight of 306 total pounds.
Second place in the stringer category was an impressive stringer of 364 pounds brought in by the crew of the Goin’ In Deep.
The first place stringer was won by the crew of the Sushi who had a two day total that blew away the field. Harry Glah and his crew weighed nine fish in their two days of fishing that weighed a whopping 470 pounds. Congratulations to Harry, Captain Charlie and the crew of Sushi.
In the single heaviest fish division the third place fish was caught by Annie Roe while she was fishing on the Wayne’s World. Annie’s 106 pound bluefin was not only good for third place heaviest fish, but it was also good for first place junior angler and second place lady angler. Way to go Annie!!
The second heaviest fish of the tournament came in this afternoon from the crew of the No Slack. Glenda Cahall muscled in this 109 pound bluefin that was good for second heaviest overall fish and first place lady angler fish.
And now for the big dough! We heard from a couple of captains early on that my good friend Captain Willie Zimmerman and our boys from the Absolut Pleasure had a 60 or so inch bluefin in the boat and we guessed that it would be really close to the lead fish in the tournament. Well we were right and by the time it was all said and done, Absolut Pleasure’s fish blasted on to the leaderboard at 115 pounds. Owner Jamie Romero fought the fish for an hour and a half on a 130 pound class reel standing up and I’m sure he would agree that it was well worth it. The Absolut Pleasure grabbed a check for $309,130 and was this year’s big winner in the 30th Annual Ocean City Tuna Tournament.
Every year the Ocean City Tuna Tournament recognizes a local charter captain that exemplifies all that fishing in Ocean City is about with the prestigious Captain Bob Gowar Award. I couldn’t agree more with this year’s winner as someone who does so much for the fishing community in Ocean City. Captain Franky Pettolina Jr. is a close personal friend of mine and the current President of the Ocean City Marlin Club and a well deserved recipient of this year’s Captain Bob Gowar Award.
Outside of the tournament Captain Dave Black of My Cin out of Sunset Marina had a terrific day of tuna fishing today putting eight nice yellowfin in the box and getting back to the dock by noon.
I got a Facebook submission from Brian Brannan who had a good day in the ocean on board the Late Bite. Brian and Derek picked up a nice mahi in Massey’s Canyon and then moved to the Hot Dog where they caught a nice yellowfin tuna.
Captain Monty Hawkins of the Morning Star fell asleep at the desk the other day, but he did submit this photo of some nice sea bass. George and Linda Smith of Fredericksburg, VA, Martha Wood of Ocean City, MD and Lewis Saylor of Johnstown, PA with a pool winning fish of 21″. These fish ate clam and squid baits over ocean structure. Captain Monty reports that Morning Star is catching sea bass at a summer pace sending everyone home with a “nice fish fry” just about every day.
Captain Chris Mizurak on the Angler reported nice sea conditions and nice fishing conditions today as he put anglers on some nice sea bass and even a gaffer mahi.
Captain John Prather of Ocean City Guide Service has been on a tear with the keeper flounder as of late. These two beauties fell to white Z Man paddler baits tipped with natural bait in the south bay.
Adrian Magnan from Washington, DC caught a new second place derby fish of 3 pounds, 5 ounces and a keeper triggerfish on board the Tortuga with Captain Drew Zerbe. Both fish were caught on shiner and squid at the south jetty.
Captain Marc Spagnola of Dusk to Dawn Bowfishing had a couple of trips today where he continued his bowfishing prowess. Captain Marc put shooters on some great bowfishing of cow nosed and southern rays in the south bay.
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