'Marli' Stringer Takes Tuna Tourney
OCEAN CITY- The 21st Annual Ocean City Tuna Tournament, which wrapped up last Sunday evening at the Ocean City Fishing Center, was one for the books with the leader board changing dramatically on the event's last day.
There were good size fish in each of the categories going into the last day and big scores in the total weight category, but everything changed late Sunday. For example, in the heaviest total weight category, the crew aboard the 'Marli' came in with a big stringer of tuna late Sunday evening that vaulted them to the top of the leader board in that category.
The 'Marli' had a bluefin tuna weighing 99 pounds and five other yellowfin tuna to weigh. When the stringer was hauled up the scale, the 'Marli' had a two-day total of 453 pounds, good enough for first place and a check for $107,102. Finishing in second place in the heaviest total weight division with a two-day total of 361 pounds, was the crew aboard the 'Fish Whistle,' which was rewarded with a check for $48,088. The crew aboard the 'Evil Eye' took third place in the category with 342 total pounds and earned $24,589.
Following a similar trend, the leader board in the single heaviest tuna category completely changed on Sunday. When the dust settled after a whirlwind couple of hours, angler Lance Crampton on the 'Marlin Magic' took first place with a 190-pounder worth $87,302. Crampton was also the top junior angler in the tournament and earned an additional $1,000.
Coming in second place in the single heaviest tuna category was angler Ron Care on the 'Fin-Ness,' who hauled in a 183-pounder worth $238,888 because of added entry levels. Third place in the single heaviest tuna category went to angler Greg Garman on the 'D.A. Sea,' who weighed a 174-pound tuna worth $36,469.
The single heaviest dolphin category produced some drama of its own with the leader board changing on Sunday. Angler Anthony Close on the 'Parker 28' took first place with a 34-pounder worth $2,500. Angler Gunnar Zorn, fishing aboard the 'Squidnation' took second with a 30-pounder worth $1,000. Matt Dahl on the 'Marli' and Jake Burger on the 'Marlin Magic' shared third place, each with a 28-pounder, and were awarded $250 apiece.
As previously mentioned, Lance Crampton on the 'Marlin Magic' was the top junior angler. Ryan Kirk on the 'Tuna Box' was second-place top junior angler, while Sean Summers on the 'Jo Jo' came in third in the top junior angler category. Angler Diane Oros aboard the 'Mugger' was the top lady angler in the tournament with a 97-pound tuna worth $1,500.