Sabotage and trickery was the name of the game at the Port Bay Hunting and Fishing Club’s fly-fishing tournament this past weekend near Rockport.
Team captain David Sams competed with his daughter, Mimi, who was fishing her first saltwater tournament.
The father/daughter pair were part of the Matagorda Mafia team, which was rounded out by Capt. Scott Sommerlatte, aka “The Boss.”
According to David, spreading false information was the name of the game to keep other contestants guessing.
“There was some disinformation flowing around about who was going to catch what, or fish where, and how big of fish were being caught,” he said. “It went so far that some anglers were talking about fishing in the surf or the ocean, and people were talking about how they had all these redfish staked out — the real plans were kept secret.”
When the teams weren’t busy trying to trick each other, some nice fish were being caught.
At the 5:30 a.m. start of the tournament, the team went straight to the lights at the end of the pier by the camp. They caught three trout there, and proceeded to jump up and down and stomp their feet before they left to scare any other fish away from the spot.
After reeling in the trout, the Matagorda Mafia team drove to Seadrift to a new fishing spot. On the way, they noticed something yellow flash by their windshield. They later came to find out that another team had placed a banana peel under the windshield wipers for bad luck. The bad luck didn’t last long, though — David hooked the winning redfish on the first cast.
Later, Mimi caught her first redfish on a fly.
The four categories up for grabs were redfish, trout, flounder and black drum. Matagorda Mafia won the redfish category with the biggest overall fish caught during the tournament, while Chris and Julie Williams, of Team Chyaa, won the black drum and trout categories. None of the teams caught a flounder.
David said the joking and trash talking was good-natured and made the tournament unique and interesting.
“It’s super, super laid back and just all for fun,” he said.