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The crew of the Lisa Marie brought home a 66-pound mahi boated by 15-year-old Eddie Kelly for a tournament win and new club record at the Ocean City Marlin and Tuna Club over the Labor Day weekend.
By Jim Hutchinson, Jr.  |  September 4, 2018
Fifteen-year-old Eddie Kelly with the 56-inch, 66-pound monster mahi he boated aboard the Lisa Marie over the Labor Day weekend, what could be the largest mahi ever caught on rod and reel off the Jersey Coast.

On Sunday September 2, 2018 during the Ocean City Marlin and Tuna Club’s annual Labor Day fishing tournament, 15-year-old Eddie Kelly of Ocean City, NJ caught what might just be the largest mahi ever landed on rod and reel in the Garden State.

While fishing the canyons approximately 80 miles off the Jersey Shore aboard the Lisa Marie out of Ocean City, Kelly reeled in a 66-pound mahi that taped out to over 56 inches length, breaking the club record of 63 pounds.

Not only was that a new Ocean City Marlin and Tuna Club record, but the massive mahi would’ve also broken the New Jersey state record by 2 pounds, 13 ounces.

"Unfortunately, we did not go through the process to have it officially registered as the state record," said Ryan Gallagher, whose father Ron captained the Lisa Marie during the tournament.

Even without the state recognized honors, Eddie Kelly should appreciate the fact that he may have caught the largest mahi ever by a New Jersey angler along the Jersey Shore.

“I was really in shock, I had no idea it was going to be that big,” Kelly later told ABC News out of Philadelphia. A member of the crew of the 36-foot Jersey Cape named Lisa Marie, Kelly fought the fish for 45 minutes on 30-pound test line to help his crew capture first place in the Labor Day contest.

Gallagher said the crew was trolling for white marlin when the big mahi piled on the spread.

The longstanding state record for mahi (also called dolphin or dorado) of 63 pounds, 3 ounces is held by Scott Smith, Jr. for the big bull he caught in 1974 at the Baltimore Canyon.

More information on the New Jersey State Record Fish Program