Jersey Shore fishing: Friday’s column – 6/28/13 – The Star-Ledger


by Al Ristori

The Greater Point Pleasant Charter Boat
Association couldn’t have asked for more from last weekend’s 28th annual Mako
Mania Tournament out of Clarks Landing in Point Pleasant. The forecast of
perfect weather resulted in a record 312 entries; water temperatures were
perfect for sharking both inshore and offshore; and makos cooperated as two
300-pounders topped the board.

The Miss Tres (originally listed on the leader
board as “Mistress”) ran away with the contest on Saturday with a
101-inch mako that weighed 375 pounds. Chuck Heil of Sayreville took the
$41,363 first place money along with his crew that included Chuck Heil, Jr.
plus Bob Glasson, Randy Drozd, Brian McAuley, and Jeff Redwine.

Ken Hager of Tinton Falls created some
competition when Bob Evertz hooked a 97.5-inch mako at 3 p.m. Sunday after
Hager had made a move from 72 degree waters to a cooler area. After a half-hour battle, Taylor Jean
returned with the 327.5-pounder. David McKendrick of Brick was in the crew
along with Hager’s son Ryan (18), and Jay Monteverdi with his son J.P. (15) who
had a memorable first shark trip that earned a check for $20,682. Hager had also won money the previous weekend
in the Mako Rodeo with a 398-pound

Rough Draft, owned by Richard DeLuccia of Midland
Park and guided by veteran Jamaica mate Greg Snack took third and $10,341 with
an 88-inch 260.5-pound mako. Michael Murray of Toms River had his sons Jim
(30), Greg (27) and Mark (24) among his crew on Caitlin Taylor that took fourth
and $5,170 with an 80-inch, 220.5-pound mako.

Mark Calzaretta of Brielle had veteran skipper
Arthur Stokes aboard Kid Squid, along with Tom Phillips and Alan Sutton, as
they finished fifth for $3,102 with an 81-inch 219.5-pounder. Mitch Paris of
Brick slipped into the final payoff spot and $2,068 Sunday afternoon with his
center console On The Edge by weighing an 80-inch 216.5-pound mako.

During Tuesday’s awards dinner in Forte’s at
Point Pleasant, tournament chairman Capt. Pete Grimbilas said 25 makos were
weighed during the contest. Many more were released due to the 66-inch minimum
length for weighing plus the fact that those fishing Sunday knew the bottom
line from Saturday required a much larger mako. Profits from Mako Mania go into
a fund for reef building.

The Jersey Coast Shark Anglers ran their Mako
Fever Tournament from Friday through Sunday, and many boats were entered in
both contests — though the weights at Hoffman’s Marina in Brielle were higher.
Miss Tres was credited there with 386 pounds, and collected $16,800. Taylor
Jean’s mako moved up to 333 pounds, and was worth $10,250 for second. Trevor
Bogert’s Stacy Ann was third at 264 pounds for $6,600. There was an unusual tie
for fourth and $1,450 each as Caitlin Taylor’s weight of 221 pounds on Saturday
was almost identical (a half-pound more) to the weight at Clarks, but On The
Edge gained 4 1/2 pounds Sunday. That could be the result of something falling
out of the stomach between weigh-ins as both scales were certified.

The striped bass bite in shallow waters at the
back of Raritan Bay died out on the weekend just as I finally was able to get
my son, who mated for me before moving to Florida for school and work, out with
Capt. Hans Kaspersetz on Sheri Berri from Baker’s Marina on the Bay in
Highlands. Mike, who recently moved back from Miami, is an Ironman whose
weekends are usually devoted to triathlons. Fortunately, he hooked a 36-incher
on a live bunker — his first striper in many years. Kaspersetz and Tony D’Anna
each caught a smaller bass while I settled for a bluefish release.

Capt. Ken Gallop had fellow policemen and friends
from the sportfishing business aboard his Big Kid from Brielle Yacht Club on
Tuesday as we picked away at sea bass on the Sea Girt and Axel Carlsen reefs.
The group included Fisherman Advertising Manager John De Bona and Dave Baldwin
of Brick; Tony Arcabascio of Tony Maja
Fishing Products in Bayville; Brett Penedos, North Brunswick; Chris Piazza,
South Plainfield; and Walt Dudley of Bayville. The hottest bite occured as the
engines were started for the return and we were using the clam scraps mate
Chuck Proto of Brick hadn’t cleaned off the board. We ended up with a good catch of sea bass
that included some knuckleheads, plus ling and even a keeper fluke on clam. I
was surprised by a legal cod in just 80 feet on the Carlsen Reef, and we also
caught blackfish, an ocean pout, a small conger, and bergalls.

The Canyon Runner from Clarks Landing is offering
a great opportunity to active duty military or retired veterans with their
fifth annual free canyon trip. There are only four spots open for the trip that
will leave on July 3 for the overnighter. Call Adam La Rosa at 732 272-4445 for
information. The Canyon Runner fleet got up to eight bigeye tuna for the season
this week, and trolled 150 yellowfins during the last four trips.

Michael Criscola of Fair Haven won the most
releases division of the prestigeous Gold Cup Tarpon Fly Fishing Tournament at
Islamorada in the Florida Keys while fishing with Capt.Paul Tejera. That
five-day contest involves 35 elite anglers, and all tarpon are released though
the largest are “weighed” by using measurements and the formula to
determine the overall winner.      


Criscola’s father, Frank and Uncle Tony were
trolling on Frank’s Crisdel from Brielle Yacht Club yesterday at Shrewsbury
Rocks when Capt. George Steller put them into 16 stripers up to 20 pounds and
only one bluefish in three hours. Capt. Chris De Stefano of Wall was aboard,
and noted that they stopped off the Red Church on the way back to catch fluke
of 4 and 4 1/2 pounds plus two other keepers.
He was also aboard on Monday when the bass catch included a 40-and-35-pounder
along with a dozen of the recently scarce blues

The Sandy Hook Bay Anglers
32nd two-day Fluke Tournament will be contested July 13-14 out of Atlantic
Highlands Municipal Marina. Call 732 787-4008 or visit

Doormats are starting to
show up. Paul Papadotas of Iselin boated a 12.52-pounder from Wild Reels,
skippered by Paul Kessler of Colonia, during the recent Woodbridge Mayor’s
Fluke Tournament. A 12.52-pounder hit a clam being fished for stripers off
Sandy Hook by Morgan Neff from Pa. last week from Capt. Carl DiMenna’s Wet
Dreams out of Baker’s in Highlands — and that was Neff’s first fluke!

Capt. Rob Semkewyc of the
Sea Hunter from Atlantic Highlands said he had some tough fluking during the
full moon currents, but is back into many keepers among the shorts now.  

Tom Paglioroli got a late
report of fine catch-and-release fishing for brown sharks up to 65 pounds from
dusk into the dark at Great Bay’s Grassy Channel.

Bruce Vitale of Piscataway
and Al Marantz from Clarksburg had fluke limits up to 4 pounds on Wednesday
while fishing off Long Branch with Capt. Pat Rogers on Ginger from Neptune.

Brielle Tackle reports that
Tom Noll of Howell had a near-record 7-pound ling plus 30 more while fishing on
the Paramount from Brielle. Bobby
Hankins from Howell fished local wrecks from his boat for three 4-pound sea

Capt. Joe Bogan of Jamaica
II from Brielle says anglers fishing small bucktails tipped with squid strips
have been doing best with fluke. Kenny Slocum of Ewing had a 6-pounder and
three other keepers.

Fred Reinger of Wall won
last week’s Spring Lake Live Liners Fluke Tournament with a 6 3/4-pounder.

The Raritan Bay Anglers Club
members fluke tournament on Sunday was won by Nick Devereaux’s 6.15-pounder on
Matt Trainia’s Dirty Mary II. The Morning Dew crew from Perth Amboy was
second. The club’s 23rd annual Charity
Fluke Tournament will be run on July 13, with $11,220 in prize money based on a
field of 200 boats. The entry fee is $100. Call 732 283-0290 for

Capt. Russ Binns fished Mako
Mania with his Mar-Lin from from Toms River in Chicken Canyon and the Glory
Hole. He released a 150-pound thresher shark the first day, and a thresher
twice that size the next day.

Capt. John Kolias said he
finally got good drifting conditions Sunday morning, and Bob Centamore was able
to top his catch by jigging a fluke close to 6 pounds plus a 4-pounder from
Reel Fun out of Twin Lights Marina in Highlands.

Though bluefishing wasn’t
good aboard the Sea Devil from Point Pleasant on Tuesday, Josh Musseaum of
Livingston was delighted with his 6-pound fluke.  

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