Team Ratch-It wins Johnny Baldwin Halloween Shootout
LAHAINA – The tenth annual Johnny Baldwin Halloween Shootout had 62 boats entered in the one-day event held in memory of Kenny Takashima.
The Ratch-It from Kula took first place with a 193.8-pound blue marlin by Scott Alexander. He was fishing with Captains Scott and Rodney Texeira.
Captain Scott mentioned when leaving out of Kahului that they like fishing the North Shore of Molokai, so they decided to head in that direction. They were trolling the 500-fathom ledge off Wailau Valley when they had a blind strike on the long rigger position.
The fish grabbed the Seaducer “Uncle Bob” lure and took off running. It pulled a half-spool of 100-test line from the 80-class reel, never showing itself. Rodney cleared the lines as Scott sat on the gunnel and started fighting the fish.
The fish stayed near the surface, so Captain Scott kept the boat up-swell, idle ahead to neutral, and let Scott muscle the fish in. Scott thought it was a big ono at first. He never saw any splashes, but said, “I got to be weak. I no can reel this thing in.” He figured he would see some bill action on the surface, but he saw nothing.
They knew it was big, so Rodney set up the fly-gaff in case. Scott was hoping it was one big ahi. They never knew what they had until they got it to the boat a half-hour later.
When it came to leader, Scott left the helm and grabbed the line. Rodney took over driving. Since Scott was fighting the fish from the starboard gunnel, he was right there to gaff.
Once they got the marlin in the boat, it went nuts, thrashing around the backdeck, tearing up everything, until Scott could get it subdued. Their winning Shootout marlin was worth $52,700 to the team.
The Upena II from Molokai landed the second largest qualifying fish, and largest ahi, weighing a 153.2-pound yellowfin by Jonah Kaholoaa. He was fishing with his dad, Kilii, brother Makana and Capt. Porter Hodgins.
Porter likes to fish the North Shore of Molokai every chance he can get, when the weather is nice. He always fishes there when it comes to tournaments, and it has paid off for him. He had heard that N-Buoy off the northeast end of Molokai had fish, but a lot of sharks and small tunas. There had been a 350-pound blue caught in the area the day before.
Porter headed 18-20-miles outside Halawa Valley located on the east end of Molokai. They worked the area all day, finally spotting a bird pile with porpoise in it around 2 p.m. The birds were moving, so on the first pass, they got a double strike, getting a tuna around 140 pounds.
Porter managed to find the birds again and caught up with them. They had another double ahi strike, losing both fish. The one they had to leader looked to be at least 200 pounds.
They put three lines out and caught back up with the birds. They had a triple strike and got two ahi, one around 140 pounds, and the 153.2-pounder. Porter mentioned that they were kind of lucky to be there when the birds and porpoise came through.
Jonah and Makana fought their ahi from the side gunnels, using the “Portugue Pump” on 130-class reels and 130-test line. Porter kept the boat pretty much in neutral, using the swell to try to bring the tunas up faster. It took the boys about 30 minutes to haul in each fish, with dad Kilii leadering and Porter gaffing.
The team won $4,680 for the second largest qualifying fish and $3,690 for the largest ahi.
The Finest Kind out of Lahaina Harbor boated a 143.5-pound blue marlin by Brian Wilson. He was fishing with Capt. Dave Hudson. Their fish paid out $7,020 in the $300 sidebet.
The Maggie Joe from Oahu landed a 118.6-pound blue marlin by Mitch Tanaka. He was fishing with Capt. Mike DeRego. Their fish paid out $5,850 in the $500 sidebet.
The Glen Boy from Pukalani weighed the largest mahi at 38.9 pounds by Captain Glen Santos. His fish was worth $4,410. There were no qualifying ono.