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By Mark N. Schieldrop/Independent Staff Writer

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</td> </tr> </tbody></table> NARRAGANSETT —

Maybe it’s beginner’s luck, but on Saturday, Meagan Griffin, who recently moved to Bonnet Shores, landed a huge, 48-inch long striped bass during her first attempt at surfcasting.

“I recently moved to Bonnet, right by the beach, and I wanted to go surfcasting,” Griffin said. “My boyfriend brought over a couple of poles and we caught about a dozen bluefish. Just at about sunset, we decided to give it one more go and then head in and that’s when I landed the big one.”

The fish didn’t put up much of a struggle. Compared to the bluefish she had been landing all day, the striper gave no indication of its size as she reeled it in. But once it was pulled into the waves, Griffin’s boyfriend, Tommy Thompson, yelped with glee, dove into the waves and dragged the fish out.

“He was like, ‘oh my God, oh my God’ and when he pulled it out he was shaking, he was so excited,” Griffin said. “He said it was the biggest fish he’s seen.”

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They didn’t have a scale nearby, but fishermen and biologists pegged the fish’s weight at about 50 pounds.

A recent graduate of the University of Rhode Island, Griffin, 23, is now employed with the state Department of Environmental Management’s Division of Fish and Wildlife. She normally works with deer and waterfowl, so working with fish “is a little new to me,” Griffin said.

Her colleagues with Fish and Wildlife were amazed to see the photos of Griffin lugging the big striper, and, Griffin suspects, fairly jealous. Many surfcasters fish for years before landing such a large striper.

“Maybe I should retire now,” Griffin joked. “I might not see a fish like this again.”

Somehow, even with just a 20-pound test line and a lure that ended up being snapped, Griffin managed to catch the fish.

“She should have snapped the line, but she didn’t,” Griffin said.

She used a nine-foot Penn surfcaster pole and a knucklehead topper to make the catch from the shore. The fish was remarkably close to the shore and when Griffin and Thompson arrived, they saw schools of baitfish nearby and some baitfish dead on the beach - an indication that the bluefish were chasing them in and that the fishing might be good.

For now, the striper will remain in Griffin’s freezer, providing some cheap eats during the winter. Already, they’ve cooked up two meals and Griffin said the meat is “delicious.”

“I was just saying that I wanted to catch food for the winter and then I go out and caught this massive fish. It’s amazing,” Griffin said.

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Wow! Lucky fish!

Er, I mean, lucky lady, great catch!

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WOW that is a great story!! Gota be happy with that catch!! I would be happy catching a striped bass half that size on my trip over:happy7:

cheers

Brandon...

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Got to love them northern girls! You know what the Beach Boys sang about!

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That's a great catch for a very young lady!

Hope it encourages her to learn about protecting the resources...

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