First timer’s luck, plus a lot of talent, earned Keep It Reel the Best Boat win at the Golden Hook Fishing Club’s 10th annual Guy/Gal ‘Reel’ Challenge held September 26 and 27 off St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands.
Two days of fishing—the first day with all gal anglers and the second with just the guys—produced nine wahoo weighing a whopping 217.7 pounds aboard Keep It Reel, more than twice the weight the other boats caught on both days.
“This is the first time we fished this tournament and it was a lot of fun,” said Captain Adam Adcock, who helmed the 29-foot Century, Keep It Reel, and has charter-fished with Captain Carl Holley for the past year and a half.
Sunny skies and nearly flat seas made perfect conditions for the women to go fishing first. Adcock skippered the Keep It Reel, one of seven boats entered in the tournament, to a spot about 16 miles northeast of the island.
“We were out fishing earlier in the week and I had a good idea of where to go,” he explained. “The problem is, the first two places I had in mind produced no bites. Nothing. We were scared to death. There was just one other spot left to try and we headed there.”
Three other boats were already on the spot when the Keep It Reel team arrived. But, while they weren’t catching, Adcock’s anglers were. In fact, they hooked up a triple-header. Kiana Adcock and Allison Wilson reeled in a wahoo apiece. After Adcock put the gaff in his wife’s fish, she reached back, grabbed the rod and reeled in the second of the triple-header.
Adcock trolled about 45 minutes after that when another bite came to his wife’s line. She reeled in a hefty 36.3-pound wahoo.
“We weren’t sure how the rest of the fleet was doing,” Adcock said, “but this seemed like a good size fish, and we caught a 12-pound kingfish later in the day that added to our total weight. So, our fingers were crossed.”
Back at the weigh station in Christiansted, Keep It Reel brought 116.8 pounds of fish to the scale, while Leisure Lady came in second with 28.8 pounds and Anam Cara third with 23.9 pounds. Kiana Adcock’s wahoo was indeed the largest fish of the day, followed by fellow angler Alison Wilson’s 29.5-pounder and Diana Freas-Lutz’s 28.8-pound wahoo from aboard Leisure Lady in third.
It was the guys’ turn to fish the next day. “It was a little rougher,” said Adcock, “Two to four foot seas. We went to the same spot where we got the triple and just worked it all day. In the end, we caught four wahoo spread throughout the day.”
Keep It Reel’s Guy Day tally proved 100.9 pounds, compared to second place boat Maragata, with 43.3 pounds, and third place finisher, Two Fer Sure, with 32.2 pounds. Two Fer Sure angler Edward Beach did reel in the largest wahoo of the day—a 32.2-pounder, while Keep It Reel anglers Jim Smith and Lance Wilson caught the second and third largest fish, 28 and 26.5 pounds, respectively.
“The guys won by just 6.9 pounds,” in the final tally, said scorer Richard Mackay. “That’s two years in a row for the guys. It’s all tied up now with the guys winning five times and the gals winning five times.”