Randy Sterling, Sr. of Key West was the grand champion angler with his 44.8-pound bull aboard the Reel Conch for $10,000.

Hosted by Lower Keys Chamber of Commerce

The Lower Keys Chamber of Commerce hosted the 18th Annual Big Pine and Lower Keys Dolphin Tournament June 10-12 with 165 anglers fishing aboard 65 boats.

The captain’s meeting, weigh-ins and awards banquet all took place at Boondocks’ Grille, Draft House & Miniature Golf. Sponsorships from Boondocks Grille, Draft House & Miniature Golf, Cudjoe Sales Fishermen’s Warehouse, Royal Plus, Twin Peaks Insurance, Bishop & Rosasco & Company, Big Pine Key Motel, Centennial Bank, Sea Center, Mi Casa Mexican Restaurant, AT & T the Real Yellow Pages, Florida-Keys.com, and the News-Barometer contributed prizes, raffle items, auction items and giveaways presented during the tournament. This year the tournament featured over $40,000 in cash and prizes and guaranteed a $10,000 cash for First Place.

Weigh Master Capt. Dave Wiley and assistants Noel Kartman, Steve Miller and Dan Iarrobino weighed in 65 Dolphin – many in the 20 to 30-pound class – as well as five Tuna and six Wahoo.

Next year’s tournament is scheduled for June 8-10, 2012.

Randy Sterling, Sr. of Key West was the grand champion angler with his 44.8-pound bull aboard the Reel Conch for $10,000.

Open Division

1st Randy Sterling Sr. Key West 44.80 $10,000 Reel Conch

2nd Wayne Burri, Big Pine Key 41.05 $ 2,000 Doubled Up

3rd Darren Threlkeld, Ramrod Key 35.40 $ 1,000 Strike Force

4th Joe Yarborough, Tampa 33.60 $ 500 On The Fly

FIN-NOR SLD 25 Combo and FIN-NOR SLD 20 Combo’s sponsored by Cudjoe Sales Fishermen’s Warehouse and Trophies were awarded to:

Taylor Williams of Venice, Fl. was the top youth angler with this 22.05-pound dolphin landed aboard the Sand Shaker.

Youth Division

1st Taylor Williams, Venice, Fl. 22.05 Sand Shaker

2nd Grant Messenger, Thompson 21.90 Gas Passer

3rd Jayce Howell, Naples, Fl. 20.95 Gator Done

The top female angler was Nicole Batnaru of Summerland with this 30.85-pound cow she landed aboard the Step Lively.

Top Lady Angler

Nicole Butnaru, Summerland Key, Fl 30.85 $500 Step Lively


Special Awards

SHIMANO SPHEROS/TEREZ COMBOS donated by Cudjoe Sales Fishermen’s Warehouse were awarded to Donnie Roberts of Marathon Florida fishing aboard the It’s On for catching a 15-pound Tuna and to Misty Matthews of Lake Placid, Florida fishing aboard the Reel Lite for bringing in a 22-pound Wahoo.



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