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Captain's Focus

There were lots of anglers on Ocean County beaches today after the reports of big stripers being hooked there Saturday. However, John Green, whose sources indicated that there was no blitz on Saturday, said he only heard of a small bass being caught today. At Seaside Park, Grumpy's Tackle only had a few weigh-ins from Saturday -- topped by a 41-inch, 28.20-pounder beached by Daryl Crisconi on an SP Minnow. The others were a 40-inch, 20.45-pounder on clam; a 31-inch, 10.45-pounder on an SP Minnow; and a 30-inch, 10.4-pounder on a shad. Betty & Nick's did have a Sunday morning weigh-in as a local angler beached a 13-pounder on an SP Minnow. There was also a report from a group in Island Beach State Park that had caught seven short stripers and saw a 33-incher hooked by another fisherman. Jay Amberg reported from Sea Girt that the water there this morning was a mild 53 degrees in a large swell with a 15-to-20-mph southwest wind. Air temperatures in the mid-60s brought out anglers, but there were no fish reports. Amberg noted that the Belmar party boat fleet sailed this morning, but I couldn't find any reports this evening. The beautiful weather isn't expected to last as gusty east winds are in the forecast. Capt. Vinnie Vetere risked losing his record of not being shut out any day this year by making one more trip with Katfish Charters from Great Kills. With the N.Y. striped bass season closed, he fished N.J. waters at Ellis Island with bunker to catch a 23-pound striper that was brought into a New Jersey marina to keep everything legal. Vetere has only had to pay off on his striper guarantee twice in six years. The Sea Hunter has officially pulled the plug on their striper season out of Atlantic Highlands.

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