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Statesboro man catches 85-pound fish
Carl Powell, Bobby Williams and Eloise Clay, all of Statesboro, pose Friday morning, Nov. 2, with an 85 lb. black drum that Williams caught with Clay's help near Richmond Hill. - photo by JAKE HALLMAN/Staff


Video interview with the fishermen

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       It started with a nibble, and ended 25 minutes later with 85 pounds of fish on a bank.
    Statesboro’s Bobby Williams caught a massive black drum while saltwater fishing near Fort McAllister in Richmond Hill Friday morning.
    “I’ve never in my life seen anything that big,” he said.
    His fishing partner, friend Eloise Clay, said as soon as the fish took the bait — “half a shrimp,” she explained — it took off.
    “He was trying to pull me in the water, but I had that drag set right,” Williams said. “He had me wore down pretty good.”
    It took nearly a half-hour of fighting with the fish (and two people) to get it on dry land. The fight took its toll on the fisherman and his catch.
    “The fish was so tired, he just laid on his side,” Clay said.    
    Clay and Williams were amazed that such a huge fish was landed with tiny tackle. Aside from the half-shrimp cut bait, Williams’ gear was a small rod and reel, 25-pound test line and a small Eagle Claw hook — the kind of rig that typically pulls in much smaller fish in local ponds and streams.
    The pair has been fishing in the Richmond Hill area for 10 years, and usually catches fish like spotted-tail bass or drum that are only about 20 inches long and top out at around five pounds.
    Clay said they didn’t know if they’d eat the massive black drum. The world record for the species, usually found on in-shore coastal waters in the Eastern U.S., is a 115-pound monster caught in Delaware.

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