Tournament Report – Topsail Inshore Challenge
The second event of the Fisherman’s Post Inshore Trail, the Topsail Inshore Challenge, took place on June 30, 2018. With a total of 59 boats fishing, winning came down to who could weigh in the heaviest aggregate of two red drum, with 1st place pulling in a guaranteed $2,000 thanks to DGS Real Estate & Landmark Sotheby’s.
Team “Lee Crisco” took home the overall top spot in the tournament, and they also won the Two Red Drum TWT with an aggregate of 14.41 lbs. “Spotting Tail” came in an incredibly close second place with a two-fish total of 14.39 lbs, and rounding out the top three was “ACC,” with 13.72 lbs.
Chris Lee and teammate Wayne Crisco, of “Lee Crisco,” had a strategy going into Saturday. “We know where the fish are,” Lee stated, so they stuck to the usual spots where they’ve had success in the past. Water conditions were pristine, and the duo had no problem reeling in some hefty reds.
“I’d say we caught a couple dozen,” Lee noted of their total catch throughout the day.
After finding and fishing some nice schools, the team found themselves pulling in mostly over-slot redfish, though they still managed to catch the two perfect reds that would win them the tournament.
“We started in Surf City but caught [the winners] between Wrightsville and Myrtle Grove in the ICW,” Lee said. The pair used live finger mullet to nab their winning fish.
In the Single Big Red Drum TWT, “Only Couches Pull Out” came in 1st thanks to a gorgeous 7.92 lb. red. “Spotting Tail” finished 2nd in this TWT, weighing in a 7.33 lb fish. The single biggest red drum of “Lee Crisco” went 7.30 lbs. and secured them the 3rd place spot.
Already the flounder king of the Inshore Tournament Trail, “Scales” saw victory again in the Single Big Flounder TWT with a doormat of an 8.85 lb. flattie. “Three Sticklands” finished in 2nd, weighing in a 6.87 lb. fish, and in 3rd place was “Yellow Brick,” who caught a 4.40 lb. flounder.
Prize money was also distributed to the top junior, lady, and senior anglers, as well as the top SeaTow member. Junior angler Justin Pacurari, of “Only Couches Pull Out,” sealed his 1st place spot with a 7.92 lb. red, while a 6.79 lb. redfish secured the top Lady and Senior Angler (Kristy and Tim Southerland) their victories. The SeaTow gift card went to “Spotting Tail” thanks to their 7.33 lb. red drum.
The Trail standings saw some big changes after Topsail. “Lee Crisco” was the only Trail team to place in the top 8 at the TIC, which helped them move from second into first place on the Trail Red Drum leaderboard and gave them a big lead on the rest of the competition with a total of 21.69 points. “Lunar Low,” who had held the first place spot after the Ocean Isle Inshore Challenge, is now in second with 13.16 points.
“Scales” dug into their first place spot on the Flounder side (and now have a strong lead of 15.6 points.), but “Three Stricklands,” previously in eighth place, moved all the way up to second with a current Trail total of 10.7 points. Their ascension pushed “Whatever’s Chewin’,” whose 2.93 lb. flounder at the TIC brought their point total to 8.15 points, down to third place.
The next 2018 Trail event will be the Wrightsville Beach Inshore Challenge, which will once again feature two divisions: Red Drum and Flounder. The WBIC will be held on Saturday, July 28, 2018, with weigh-ins at Wrightsville Beach Marina.
For a complete leaderboard of the Topsail Inshore Challenge, as well as more information on the WBIC and Inshore Trail, please visit www.FishermansPost.com.