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“Double Shot” hauls in top catch in Buds and Suds Fishing Tournament

The closing ceremony and celebration
Source: Press release

Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — A total of 15 boats gathered for three days of fishing during the annual Buds and Suds Fishing Tournament, held Tuesday, Nov. 22 to Friday, Nov. 24.

The boats included 4 from Apia, 1 from Manu'a, and 10 from American Samoa who vied for victory in seven categories: Marlin, Sailfish, Yellowfin tuna, Dogtooth tuna, Masi Masi, Wahoo, and Miscellaneous. The competition was fierce, and anglers displayed exceptional skill and strategy to secure their places in each category.

The total weight of fish brought in over the three days reached an impressive 7,337 pounds, highlighting the abundance of marine life in the waters surrounding American Samoa. This not only underscores the significance of sustainable fishing practices in the region but also emphasizes the thriving marine ecosystem.

Fishermen Ben, Jerome, and Captain Taualapapa Will Sword on Mumua with their beautiful catch during the annual Buds and Suds Fishing Tournament, held Tuesday, Nov. 22 to Friday, Nov. 24. [courtesy photo]

Participants and spectators alike had the opportunity to witness amazing fish brought to the weigh pole at the Malaloa Dock daily. Captains and anglers from American Samoa, Manu’a, and Apia competitively tackled each day to be the number one boat of the tournament.

At the end of the tournament Double Shot, captained by Russ Cox, emerged as the overall champion, bringing in a total of 1,601 pounds of fish over the three days and this secured their place at the top of the tournament.

The biggest fish, a 268-pound Marlin reeled in by angler Jason Pritchard on the vessel Bella's Pride II, captained by Geoffrey from Apia secured them 1st place for Marlin.

The 1st place Marlin, weighing in at 268.6 pounds was caught by Jason Pritchard on Bella’s Pride II, one of the Apia boats, captained by Geoffrey Clark, during the annual Buds and Suds Fishing Tournament, held Tuesday, Nov. 22 to Friday, Nov. 24. [courtesy photo]

In addition to the competition, the tournament served as a platform for fostering camaraderie and strengthening the bonds within the fishing community between the two Samoas.

As the boats return to their respective harbors, the Buds and Suds Fishing Tournament leaves a lasting impression on the participants and the community.

The youngest angler of the tournament, 15-year-old Michael lands a 136-pound marlin on Thanksgiving Day securing 3rd place in the tournament for that species. He fishes on Fua II, captained by Vaughan Simpson, one of the four boats from Apia that participated in the 3-day annual Buds and Suds Fishing Tournament, held Tuesday, Nov. 22 to Friday, Nov. 24. [courtesy photo]

With the continued support of sponsors and the enthusiasm of participants, the Buds and Suds Fishing Tournament was able to complete its seventh year successfully here in American Samoa.

The success of the Buds and Suds Fishing Tournament would not have been possible without the generous support of its sponsors. Their commitment to promoting marine activities and fostering community engagement was evident throughout the event, contributing to its overall success.

Team Manu’a member Clint caught the 1st place winning Masi on the 1st day of the tournament. Clint fishes on Mumbo based out of Manu’a, captained by Calvin, during the annual Buds and Suds Fishing Tournament, held Tuesday, Nov. 22 to Friday, Nov. 24. [courtesy photo]

Major sponsors were Sopac, American Samoa Visitors Bureau, Department of Marine and Wildlife Services, Samoa Maritime, Pago Marine Charters, Pago Print Shop, Sepp’s Paint Shop, Swire Shipping, Tool Shop, Harbor Maritime, Industrial Gases, Blue Sky, Marine Patrol, Manua’s, Bella’s Pride II, Accords Collision and Pacific Energy.