Mississippi Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo finishes up in style

The Mississippi Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo  wrapped up it's 54th annual tournament on Sunday July 7, 2002.  Officials are saying  this is the best year ever.

This year the 5-day event included the Southern Kingfish Association's Fourth of July Kingfish Classic.  The pairing was a tremendous success.

When the scales at Rice Pavillion closed on Sunday the leaders in the various catagories were:

Tarpon: Taylor Butterworth, Pass Christian, 109 pounds

Grouper: Jeff Williams, Slidell, 89 pounds, 12 ounces

Amberjack: Steve Braun, Ocean Springs, 51 pounds, 14 ounces.

Tuna: Chad Irby, Biloxi, 53 pounds, 14 ounces

Green trout: Robert Gordon, Woolmarket, 9 pounds, 8 ounces

Catfish: Matt Hollis, Poplarvile, 34 pounds, 4 ounces

Shellcracker perch: Brentley Strickland, Woolmarket, 1 pound

Bass Shootout

1. Richard Ladner, Kiln, 5 pounds, 4 ounces ($825)

2. Don Haley, Gulfport, 5 pounds ($495)

3. Brent Ladner, McHenry, 4 pounds, 11 ounces ($330)

Note: 26 fishermen participated in the one-day Bass Shootout

Rodeo awards

Most unusual fish: Jeff Williams, Slidell, horse eye jack

Sport Fisherman: Charles Hilbun of Lucedale,

Billy Meadows: R.J. Garrett of Ocean Springs

King Fisherman: Jeff Williams of Slidell

Queen Fisherette: Sherry Deschamp of Gulfport

Freshwater King Fisherman: Brentley Strickland of Perkinston

Freshwater Queen Fisherette: Tracy Gates of Perkinston

Rodeo stats

Total number of anglers weighing fish: 448

Total fish weighed: 937

Total weight of fish weighed: 13,194 pounds, 3 ounces.