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Division: 9 Ocean Isle Beach, NC JOLLY MON KING CLASSIC June 27-29, 2014

Reel Determined Is Top SKA Boat at the Jolly Mon

By Christine Rodenbaugh

Ocean Isle Beach, NC — More than half of the 230 boat field checked out on day one of the either/or Jolly Mon Kingfish Classic held at the McMullans’ Ocean Isle Fishing Center. The tournament had been postponed a week to June 26-29 hoping for safer, more agreeable weather conditions. It seems like the weather could always be better, but the weekend was definitely fishable. The Shark Hole was a popular spot but there were crowds at the 90s and Yaupon Reef, too. About 100 teams checked out on day two to fish in variable 20 knot winds and questionable seas. A non-member took first place, but there were many familiar SKA boat names on the leaderboard.

This was the Reel Determined team’s first time fishing an event as SKA members and they took second place overall. What a great way to come out of the gate! Captain Tommy (Chip) McAlister from Marshville, North Carolina led his crew of Walker and Ben McAlister on their 32’ Mercury powered Yellowfin. Bait was hard to find for all the teams, so Reel Determined caught theirs the night before. Other teams didn’t get a line in the water until after 10:00 due to lack of bait. 

The morning was slow for Reel Determined at the Shark Hole. The team worked their way offshore but only found a couple of teenagers. The bite turned on around noon just when a thunderstorm started to blow. “She hit the shotgun line,” explained Chip. “Walker fought her for 35 minutes to get her close enough for Ben to stick her with the gaff while I maneuvered the boat.” Kings were still biting hard when the team made the decision to head home. “It was a hard decision. We just hoped the fish in the boat would be enough to hold the weight,” Chip said. The team worked flawlessly together in tough conditions and their boat and motors handled the stormy conditions well, allowing Reel Determined to get the scales with time to spare. 

Welcome to the SKA, gentlemen. You’ve made your mark on the Mercury Tournament Trail and your fellow Carolina teams will be keeping an eye on you. 

Third place went to Wild Wing Cafe. Chris Nealon, Mike Clark, and Jeremy Padgett teamed up on the 28’ Yamaha powered Privateer sponsored by Wild Wing Cafe and Strong Back Concrete. Like many teams, they didn’t get their pogies until about 9:30 in the morning and headed right to the Shark Hole. “The weather was pretty nice in the morning,” Chris said. They were in 70 feet of water and stopped to fight a cobia. Two more lines went off so they were fighting three fish at the same time. The 33.3-pounder hit the pogy close to the boat and Mike picked up the rod to fight her. They got the cobia and the king in the boat with Chris on the gaff. “We fished the beach the rest of the day to avoid bad weather,” concluded Chris.

The Part Time team of Bruce and Clay Gallup, Jared Floyd, and Derek Blanton headed south of Little River in their 31’ Contender powered by Yamaha on day two. “It was about the only place to go because it was blowin’ so hard,” remarked Gallup.  They found the fourth place fish in 65 feet of water over some live bottom about 1:30. She hit a double pogy rig on the surface. “It’s a little tricky fighting fish in five- to six-footers. We pitched another pogy in the prop wash, caught a smaller king about 29, and released her,” Gallup concluded. Jared fought the 32 for about 20 minutes and Derek gaffed her. The only other action that day was a shark. The fishing was slow for the team, but one of three bites put them on the board. Call it a good day.

Triggermack hooked up to seven kings and a 32.15-pounder put them on the board in fifth place. Jeff Morris out of Wilmington fished with Dak Millis on the 32’ Yamaha powered Yellowfin at the Shark Hole 18 miles straight out of Cape Fear. The team had penned up some blues so they were in position at 6:55 for lines in at 7:00. “We fished for an hour and she bit the blue on the longline on top,” Morris explained. "She ran off some line and swam out about 200 yards. We chased her down and by the time she got to the boat, she made two big circles and Dak stuck her with the gaff," Morris concluded. They fished there until noon and headed to the beach, but couldn't get a better fish. 

Team Zebra headed to the Shark Hole because of the time of year. David Tedder, Jeff Smith, Craig Hughes, and John Sledge had menhaden penned up so they were able to get to the hole about 6:35 or so. That gave them time to get the boat in order, tie some last-minute rigs, and watch the clock for 7am lines in. They put out a long line, a medium line, and were putting out a third line when the 30-pounder hit about 50 feet behind the boat. “First bite. That’s like fishing in the Gulf,” said Tedder. “Having our bait penned and getting to the spot right at lines in was key to getting that first bite,” he continued. Team Zebra took sixth place. “We really appreciate the great job the McMullans do and appreciate the professional way in which they handled the event,” concluded Tedder.

The team fishes a 36’ Yamaha powered Yellowfin sponsored by Zebra Environmental Industrial Service, Island Tackle Carolina Beach, and Daiwa. Team Zebra donates tournament winnings to Big Brothers Big Sisters, High Point, NC. 

First place in the Small Boat Class went to Eris Jones, Craig Drye, and Arthur Hall on Back Lash, a 20’ Yamaha powered Hydra Sport. Jones stopped in 85 feet of water off Carolina Beach because it just looked fishy. “I’ve been king mack fishing just about since I could walk,” remarked Jones. Their 24.4 hit about 10:30 in the morning on a menhaden in the prop wash. “I caught my bait that morning. They won’t come up until the sun rises. I just had to be patient, wait for them to come up, and throw the net once to get what I needed,” Jones explained. 

They missed two kings, one of which they estimate at 36 pounds. It went deep and got eaten. Arthur had a dolphin on and Eris was putting out another bait when the reel started singing. The third fish was the charm and put them on top of the Small Boat Class leaderboard. “Day one was pretty nice as far as weather, but there were storms all around us,” said Jones. The dolphin missed the money by a slim .16 pounds. All in all, they had three kings and three dolphin in the boat for a great day on the water. The team thanks Ocean Tamer and Bluewater Candy.

Everyone knows the McMullans deliver great tournaments out of OIFC and that’s why so many teams showed up to participate. SKA teams took second through sixth place in the Open Class and first plus third through sixth in the Small Boat Class, not to mention many more SKA teams that peppered leaderboards. That’s a great SKA showing in a large field of teams. Now, get ready for the Got-em-On!

Jolly Mon King Classic

Open Class

36.151. Par-five
Yellowfin / Mercury
Tommy McAlister
Walker McAlister
Benjamin McAlister
Privateer / Yamaha
Chris Nealon
Jeremy Padgett
Michael Clark
32.754. PART TIME
Contender / Yamaha
Bruce Gallup
Clay Gallup
Contender / Yamaha
Jeff Morris
Daki Millis
30.906. TEAM ZEBRA
Yellowfin / Yamaha
David Tedder
Jeff Smith
Craig Hughes
John Sledge
Sea Hunt / Yamaha
Ashley Widenhouse
Gary Widenhouse
Keaton Widenhouse
Blake Widenhouse
Bryan Russell
25.358. ALL IN
Cape Horn / Yamaha
Kenneth Strickland
Roy Strickland
James Hammonds
Dan Clark
Greg Apple
24.309. THAT'S MY DOG
Yellowfin / Mercury
Forrest Taylor
David Hooks
Jordan Sullivan
Tripp Hooks
24.2510. TIDELINE
Wellcraft / Yamaha
Dieter Cardwell
Kevin Alley
Mike Lundy
23.8511. C-ARK
Sea Pro / Mercury
Kevin Petty
Duane Smith
22.7512. WILD RIDE
Fountain / Mercury
Randy Griffin
Randy Griffin Sr
Ayden Griffin
Shayna Griffin
Ted Conner
22.7013. GET FLOOR'D
Contender / Yamaha
Zach Faulkner
Benjy Faulkner
Richie Heycock
Jess Patterson
22.3514. LOGAN'S RUN
Yellowfin / Yamaha
D Logan
David Logan
Onslow Bay / Yamaha
Brad Knight
Allen Ambrose
Jeff Atkinson
Chris Wiles
Jerry Erlewine

Small Boat Class

24.401. BACK LASH
Hydra Sport / Yamaha
Eris Jones
Craig Drye
Dennis Hall
Onslow Bay / Yamaha
Scott Pelletier
Jodie Gay
Tim Parker
Kent Raynor
Contender / Yamaha
Austin Eubank
Margaret Pennstrom

Top Lady Anglers
22.901. Margaret Pennstrom

Top Senior Angler
23.35Roy Strickland

Top Junior Angler
25.60Blake Widenhouse

SKA Top Junior Anglers
25.601. Blake Widenhouse
24.302. Tripp Hooks
22.753. Ayden Griffin

Mercury Marine Junior Angler Scholarship Winner
Tripp Hooks

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