The third annual Bay Bash Family Fishing Tournament on August 11 saw 187 anglers competing in 14 divisions including 10 different species of fish.
Sunny skies and calm seas prevailed as Ingram Bay Marina and the Northumberland Association of Progressive Stewardship (NAPS) partnered to produce the event to raise money for special needs children in the Northern Neck. The tournament was open to boats, kayak/canoe and shore/pier anglers.
“From contenders with triple 300 hp engines to pier fishermen, everyone had a blast and prize money was shared among a diversity of anglers,” said organizer Capt. Billy Pipkin.
In the Seigler Reels grand prize division, Pete Conway of Team Chesapeake Bank aboard the Ghost Bite amassed a whopping 79.38-inch total aggregate length composed of six different fish species including Spanish mackerel, blue, spot, croaker, speckled trout and whiting. Conway picked up key wins in whiting, 12.5 inches, and speckled trout, 14.25 inches, and scores with bluefish, Spanish mackerel and croaker. He also claimed the top sponsor team champion trophy for Chesapeake Bank.
Jason Morauske of Team Finsanity placed second overall with four species for an aggregate length of 55.25 inches. Maggie Hall of team Paper Doll took third with an aggregate length of 46.12 inches.
Jason Dunn with team Dunn-Rite Auto, aboard Bay Tripper, snagged the largest fish, a Spanish mackerel measuring 24.5 inches. He took first place in the open Spanish mackerel division.
The special angler team aboard the Main Street Pharmacy/Bay Restoration charter posted open division wins by Joe Gittinger of Cape Charles and Alex Mendoza of Woodbridge. Gittinger won with a 9.12-inch spot. Mendoza was second in whiting, Jeff Cogswell of Manassas took third in whiting and first overall in the special angler division.
Sarah Capp of Centreville and Lottsburg landed four species and the tie breaker to edge Tina Foster of Lil Bill, Kristen Perry of Top Seacret and Hall. All four ladies scored on four species.
The youth division featured a tight matchup among Madelyn McMichen with team Lil Bill from Little River, four species; Henry Tambellini of Kilmarnock, four species; Billy Shifflet with team Kraken of Weems, three species; and Maddox Morauske of Team Finsanity of Ingram Bay, three species.
The reigning “Queen of the Bay” champion, Christina “Sovereign” Simon of Reston crowned McMichen the new Bay Bash “Queen of the Western Bay.” For those in attendance, the young lady’s poignant and darling speech was quite memorable, said Pipkin.
Other winners in the open division included:
• Spot, second, K. Perry, Top Seacret, Wicomico Church; and third, J. Morauske, Finsansity, Ingram Bay.
• Croaker, first, David Price, canoe, Wherever I Put In; and second, Perry Austin, kayak, Goldvein Gunslingers.
• Bluefish, first, Ron Perry, Top Seacret, Wicomico Church; and second, Hall, Paper Doll, Virginia Beach.
• Spanish Mackerel, second, J. Morauske, Finsansity, Ingram Bay.
• Perch, first, Colin Saunders, kayak, Goldvein Gunslingers; and second, Price, canoe.
Rachel Clarke, along with Peyton and Parker Smith, all of White Stone, operated the Fish Dispatch Live Leaderboard and manned the “length in” tables on the dock, reported tournament volunteer Sawyer Smith.
Ross Shaffer, a high school junior from Fredericksburg, volunteered for community service credits through the special angler organization, handled the reports coming in live throughout the day by text and email.
The evening festivities included an awards ceremony, raffle, a bounce amusement and a concert by the Tom Euler Trio.
“The music was excellent,” said NAPS president Mike Ahart. “We had such great talent at this event.”