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Champion Team StriperSurf
The Beating On The Beach 2004

New Jersey Angler Magazine
Classic Surf Fishing Tournament
by Bob D'Amico
Team SS Captain Bob DeLeonard
The 2004 Champion Team StriperSurf Roster
Captain Bob DeLeonard
Honorary Captains Ning Byl, Mike Coppa, Marty Buzas

Frank N - Joe Laniewski - DanS - Leigh - Team Riverfisher - Laurie - Enby - Ning - Operator - Ragman - Surfcoastie - Bolt - BilleH! - 04281 - John M Sr - John M Jr - Ferret - Donnie - Trainman - Walter M - Pocono-Bob - Team SilverFox - mrwoodwork - Team Blues (Sonny, Yong, Alex & Michael Lee) - Pony Killer - Don - KHE C-F Team - Joeturse - Pat - Bob - LBI-47 - DMGotti


eam StriperSurf triumphed over Team Barner on Saturday 22 May 2004 during the NJ Angler Magazine 3rd Annual Classic Surf Fishing Tournament at Island Beach State Park. While Island Beach is our "home turf" what pleases me the most is the vital contribution made by team members that were unfamiliar with IBSP as well as the diversity of our team. We had surfcasting "pros" like Bob DeLeonard, Joe Laniewski, Operator, Ken of "KHE C-F Team," Riverfisher, SilverFox, DanS and Ferret, three women, Leigh, Denise and Laurie, many real newcomers to IBSP, plus two young men, Alex and Michael Lee entered in the Youth Division.

Click to EnlargeThanks to Bob DeLeonard we had a pre-tournament strategy meeting that was catered by Enby and his wife Ning which left us "stuffed to the gills" (see menu below) and finally meet eachother face to face. The sign up for Team StriperSurf enabled us to pre-determine each person's familiarity with IBSP and direct people to pre-determined strategic locations. In fact we had the park covered from Two Bit Road in the north, south to the jetty at Barnegat Inlet. While we were nervous that our only experienced kayak fisherman had to cancel at the last minute, our concern was unfounded since no one from the Kayak Division weighed in a fish.

The majority of Team StriperSurf members took fish during the tournament. We set up a cellphone and CB network with Pat Leahy's son-in-law Chris as our "G2" recording catches so we would avoid killing fish unnecessarily. Many fish owe their lives to the network. Thanks to the skill, knowledge and experience of Bob DeLeonard who took the number one and number five fish. He shared his previously undisclosed "sweet spot" with five other team members. Bob directed Mr and Mrs "Riverfisher" to the southern edge of the "spot" and enabled Laurie to land her first ever striped bass, a 8.37 pound beauty that fell for a chunk of ultra fresh "Fish Picker" bunker. That was our number four fish but it sure looked at least two pounds bigger than its official weight. Even though one one or more Team Bearner members interdicted Bob's location, it was too late. All our fish were taken within 90 minutes of the start of the tournament, after 10:00 AM no one was even taking "slot fish."

Walter M and FrankN walked onto the northern beaches, culling fish as they independently worked the shoreline and delivered our second and third heaviest fish. Gillikins was fully covered as well as the far southern beaches but these areas were only yielding "slot fish." Both Walter and Frank were new to IBSP but proved their resourcefullness and skill when the chips were down.

Missed chances: Ferret was into a cocktail and taylor blue blitz at the jetty around 6:30 AM. Since he was looking for a trophy sized bluefish he tossed back numerous fish in the plus five pound category. If he had kept two, he would have won both second and third places in the Bluefish category! Ken Ewers son, Kenny of "KHE C-F Team" was not on the Team StriperSurf roster but he did win 3rd Place overall in the Youth Division with an 8-1/2 pound bass. Next year we want the entire KHE C-F Team on the roster! Andrew "Surfcoastie" beached a 10 pound black drum on Gillikins. In 2005 there must be a Drum category added to the tournament!

At the official weigh in we ended up culling fish. Granted they were the infamous NJ "Slot" bass but catches posted by SilverFox, Ragman and others dropped off the board as the weigh in progressed. Imagine our amazement when we realized that Team Barner wasn't able to bring more than four bass to the scales! The total difference between the two teams was 11.7 pounds or 34% more weight by Team StriperSurf.

Team StriperSurf Team SS
Weights
Team Barner
Weights
Bob DeLeonard 11.05 10.36
Walter M 9.84 9.17
Frank N 8.80 8.68
Laurie "Riverfisher" 8.37 6.32
Bob DeLeonard 7.37 No Fish
Total Weight 46.23 34.53

Very special thanks to Enby (Neal) for providing us with eight, yes 8 bushels of live clams as a gift to the team. He arranged to get the clams fresh off the boats and hauled them down to Seaside Park. I think Enby and Ning's day started around 3:00 AM on Friday! Marty "Fish Picker" Buzas was also up early on Friday, he was called out to dive on a boat that had run aground in south Jersey and then went out to catch us the freshest bunker and herring in New Jersey. Both Joe and I were in contact with him while he was still onboard his boat, F/V Eileen B with our bait. He then then drove 160 miles roundtrip to deliver it to Seaside Park! Now there's a man who takes his appointment as Honorary Team Captain very seriously!

Thanks also to Ron Reddington, the publisher of BassBarn.com for enthusiastically agreeing to the Team vs Team challenge, Steve "Nightstrikes" George for captaining Team Barner and especially to Darren Dorris and Bill Donovan, the publisher of New Jersey Angler Magazine for their hard work, enthusiasm and top rate organization. Everything was First Class!

Team StriperSurf Pre-Tournament Strategy Meeting "Menu"
Provided through the generosity and hard work of Neal (Enby) & Ning Byl
  • Crab Dip and Assorted Crackers: Shredded Crab Meat/Golds Red Cap Horseradish/Ketchup/Lemon
  • Tomato and Onion Salad: Vine & Holland Tomatoes Cubed/Diced Vidalia Onions/Olive Oil & Balsamic Vinegar
  • Chick Pea Salad: Chick Peas/Diced Green Onions/Seasonings & Olive Oil & Balsamic Vinegar
  • Baked Ziti: Ziti Pasta/Vegetable & Italian Herb Pasta Sauce/Ricotta - Mozzarella & Parmesan Frommagio
  • Meatballs: Ground Top Round Beef or Ground Turkey
  • Sausage/Peppers & Onions: Sweet Italian Sausage/Roasted Onions & Peppers/Tomato Sauce
  • Chinese Vegetable Dumplings: Ning's Special Blend of Parcooked Vegetables/Hand Made Wraps/Boiled & Sauce Dipped
  • Ambrosia Salad: Fruit Cocktail/Pineapple/Sour Cream/Grated Coconut & Mini Marshmallows
  • Assorted Rolls
Ning's Vegetable Dumplings Rule!

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