Outdoors

Ashton Bond shines at Spraberry-Schankin Memorial Tournament

JOHN FITZHUGH/SUN HERALD 
 Ashton Bond of Pass Christian holds his 6.52-pound speckled trout at the Sprayberry-Schankin Memorial Speckled Trout tournament at Jones Park in Gulfport on Sunday May 22, 2016.
JOHN FITZHUGH/SUN HERALD Ashton Bond of Pass Christian holds his 6.52-pound speckled trout at the Sprayberry-Schankin Memorial Speckled Trout tournament at Jones Park in Gulfport on Sunday May 22, 2016. SUN HERALD

GULFPORT - Ashton Bond felt something good would happen during his first time fishing at the Spraberry-Schankin Memorial Speckled Trout World Tournament.

Bond recorded a large speckled trout of 6.52 pounds to win the speckled trout division and $10,000. John Cuevas placed second with a trout of 6.14 pounds.Darryl Kinsey's six pound trout was third.

Robbie Busby won the children's division with a speckled trout weighing 3.82 pounds, just over a half-pound better than Gar Boswell's catch of 3.30 pounds. Cayden Busby was third with a catch of 2.84 pounds.

For most of the day Troy Helwig stood atop the cobia board with a 19.44-pound cobia. However, with about five minutes left before weighing ended, the fishing boat Steel Slinger weighed in, knocking Helwig down to third. Derrick Saucier more than doubled Helwigs fish with a cobia weighing in at 42.44 pounds. Saucier's fishing partner Jarrod Davis, though, brought in the heaviest cobia at 48.14 pounds.

Christie Sutton took first place honors in the flounder category with a catch of 2.90 pounds. Donald Bosarge brought in the second-heaviest flounder at 2.50 pounds, better than the third-place flounder caught by Nathan Peyton of 2.36 pounds.

Jonathan Linton won the redfish category with a catch of 33.38 pounds. David Saucier's redfish weighed 33 pounds. Michael Griffith was third with a fish of 28.08 pounds.

Darryl Kinsey was the sole entry in the calcutta category, with a catch of 27.34 pounds.

Bond, a Pass Christian resident, fished tournament bass at Southern Miss, winning a tournament in 2010, his only other previous tournament victory. He caught his winning speckled trout close to the Gulfport Harbor.

"The fish waited until midday before starting to bite," Bond said. "It was tough fishing out there."

Davis, a Pascagoula angler, felt Friday's rain put anglers late into the Gulf.

"They had some storms Friday that pushed the wind on the Gulf up to 60 mph," Davis said. "It's not safe to be out there. I've been caught out with winds that bad and it's just not fun."

According to tournament organizer Johnny Rea, 112 anglers entered the tournament with over 30 children and about 20 sponsors.

"It's been great fishing," Rea said.

The yearly tournament is held in memory of Raymond Schankin and Dr. Chris Spraberry. Tournament organizers donate $5,000 each to an endowment at Jackson's University Medical Center in Spraberry's name and the Raymond Schankin Golden Eagle scholarship fund at Southern Miss.In addition to donating all the fish entered in the tournament to the Gulf Coast Research Lab, tournament organizers donate $2,000 to the lab.

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