(Aug. 23, 2019) When Kristy Frashure was fighting a monster dolphin, she, her teammates and crew aboard Haulin N’ Ballin knew it was a big fish, but they never imagined it would be a new state record.
Last Friday, Frashure was participating in the 26th annual Capt. Steve Harman’s Poor Girls Open ladies-only fishing tournament with Breanna Hall, Jackie Davis, Tammy Bielot, Toni Johnson and Kristin Jezierski, who owns the boat with her husband, Aaron. Howard Lynch was the captain and the mates were Burro Gonzalez and Jose Luis Enriques.
Fishing in the Poor Man’s Canyon, lines were dropped at 8 a.m. and shortly after all the action happened.
“We caught the fish about 9:20 a.m., so it wasn’t too long after we put lines in,” Frashure said. “It just so happened we had two of them on at once so we let the angler [Davis] who had never been out before fish a little bit, then the big one got on the line and I just happened to be there and got handed the rod.”
Frashure battled the dolphin for what felt like an eternity, she said.
“As soon as it jumped the mates and the captain, they knew. They said, ‘that’s a monster. That’s amazing. That’s a winner,” she said.
“It jumped about six times,” Jezierski said.
Frashure fought the fish for about 23 minutes.
“[That’s] what they tell me,” she joked.
“It was terrible,” she said during the tournament awards banquet last Sunday at Harrison’s Harbor Watch at the inlet, now laughing after the fact. “It was extremely difficult. We had the leader five or six times then he just kept running back out. It was a hard fight.”
Frashure said no one on the boat had any idea how much it weighed, but once it was on board they could see it much better up close.
“We were guessing on the boat between 40, maybe a 60-pounder. Never did we imagine it would be 74 pounds,” she said. “It was just chaos [on the boat]. Everyone was ecstatic [and] jumping around.
“Of course, I was exhausted,” she continued. “We did have a little celebration. We had no idea it was that big, but it was definitely the biggest mahi we have ever seen.”
Lines were out of the water at 3:30 p.m. and then the group headed to Bahia Marina on 21st Street, bayside, to weigh their catch.
“As soon as they pulled it up and it said 74 pounds we all started screaming, [and were] super excited, but when they said it was a state record that’s really when the whole marina kind of exploded in cheer,” the 40-year-old nurse from Pasadena, Maryland, said.
The fish weighed in at 74.5 pounds.
A Maryland Department of Natural Resources biologist identified the species as common dolphinfish — Coryphaena hippurus — (also known as mahi mahi) and its official weight was certified by Bahia Marina.
Frashure’s catch topped Jeff Wright’s Atlantic Division record for common dolphinfish of 72.8 pounds, which was set just three weeks ago on July 28. The previous record had been held since 1985.
To now have a state record, Frashure said is “very exciting.”
“This is a great team, great owner, captain, mates, everybody. I’m just super excited to be on a great team,” she said. “And it couldn’t happened during a better tournament for breast cancer.”
Proceeds from the annual ladies-only tournament are donated to the American Cancer Society and earmarked for breast cancer research and program development.
Frashure’s state-record fish took top honors in the tournament’s dolphin division. She and her Haulin N’ Ballin teammates received $13,447.50.
This was the fourth year Frashure has participated in the Poor Girls Open. She also fishes in the Ocean City Marlin Club’s Heels & Reels ladies tournament.
Frashure said her family and children also enjoy fishing so she spends a good amount of time on the water.