■ BY MARCY SHORTUSE
With 39 releases in three hours’ time recorded in the 2018 annual “Howl at the Moon” tarpon tournament last Saturday night, May 5, it was Capt. Waylon Mills and his anglers Michael Graci, Lindsey Graci, Stuart Lewis and Tanner Lewis who took home the big prize money of $5,400 with four releases.
A five-way tie for second (each boat had three releases) ended with the Faithful team (Capt. Matt Coleman and anglers Alex Young, Liz Woodroffe, Matt Young and Melissa Steyer) taking home the $3,600 prize money.
Third place, or last fish released, was taken by the “Night Cap” gang (anglers JB Baldwin, Brandon Digman, Thomas Bethel and Price Whitman) and Capt. Dan Stickley for $2,000.
The average release time for the tournament was seven minutes. Your complete release list is as follows:
Boat Name Release
“MISS SARAH” 3
“TRACY LYNN” 3
“HEY, MOMA!” 3
“BOCA BLUE” 3
“JILL MARIE” 2
“MISS AUBREY” 2
“PHIL JACK” 2
“DÉJÀ VU” 1
“OUTTA LINE” 1
“LAST DRIFT” 1
Total Releases 31
First-place winners in this year’s‘Howl at the Moon’Tarpon Tournament held last Saturday night in Boca Grande Pass were the team on the Blaze. Standing for the awards were Michael and Lindsey Graci, Stuart Lewis, presenter Capt. Sandy Melvin in the background, Capt. Waylon Mills and Tanner Lewis. Top right, Stuart fought the first of four of that night’s tarpon.
Second-place winners of the Faithful II: Liz Woodroffe, Capt. Matt Coleman, Matt Young, Melissa Steyer and Alex Young.
Third-place (last tarpon caught and released) winners were on the Nightcap, including JB Baldwin, Brandon Digman, Thomas Bethel and Price Whitman.
Bottom photos show the Boca Blue hook-up with Sam Shrader in the chair and an angler on the Casuarina with a hook-up late in the night.
Photos by Daniel