It seemed to bring him luck, as he and teammates Stu and Jill Lewis and Joan and Capt. Dann brought three fish to the boat.
“It was the first boat I ever fished with him on in 1996 when we met,” said tournament coordinator Angie Mills. “Having always loved the name, it just seemed fitting to name this tournament after it.”
Second place winners Lew Hastings, Bobby Jewett, Jay Spurgeon and Mark Paquin were just coming off a first-place high from the week before in the Howl at the Moon Tournament. They fished with Capt. Dave Chatham aboard the Jill Marie ... the same boat they fished in the Howl tournament.
“We were really excited,” Lew said. “It was slow going in the beginning, but we were hoping to win. When the head judge, Chad Lach, announced after an hour of fishing that there was a 12-way tie for first place and we realized that no one had gotten a tarpon yet, it bolstered our confidence a little bit. Things started picking up and Waylon got one, then Mark launched into our first fish. Jay Spurgeon caught the second one. It was a great way to end a tarpon season.”
Third place went to Capt. Lamar Joiner Sr. and his angler, Bruce Strayhorn, for last fish caught.
In all there were 12 boats competing in the tournament, with all nine fish caught in the last hour. Mills said when all was said and done, they were able to contribute $1,022 to their charitable cause, the Boca Grande Child Care Center. The money will be used specifically for more playground equipment and new learning resources in the classrooms.
Mills also coordinated the Boca Grande Classic this year, and those proceeds went to the center as well.
“This was the first year I decided to do two tournaments, and while it was fun I may go back to just one invitational next season,” Angie said. “These tournaments were started to give the guides another opportunity to take a charter out, their family, or whoever they choose, and give them the tournament experience. Boca Grande is based on tradition, and I want those traditions to continue for years to come. This was a great year for the Boca Grande fishing families, we made huge progress in educating the public and bringing awareness back to the traditional-style fishing methods.”
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