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There are plenty of light tackle anglers out there.

The challenge of catching fish with smaller gear or line is greater when you're trying to reel in the big fish.

A few anglers take it a step further - trying to turn their passion into a world line-class record.

Few are better at it than Virginia Beach dentist Julie Ball.

Ball, an area representative to the International Game Fish Association, said she had 12 world line-class records to her credit.

She now can say 13.

Ball finally met another goal two weeks ago, tackling a 74-pound cobia on 20-pound test line to set the women's record for that line class.

Twenty-pound line doesn't sound like light tackle, but it is when it's spooled on a spinning rod and you're fighting a big cobia.

"I've had my eye on that record for about three years," Ball said. "But it's always been something - a buoy or pilings or something - so it never ever worked out."

Things fell into place nicely on this trip, though.

Ball was fishing with Jason Legg and Capt. Rudy Lavasseur - a pair of accomplished sight-casters (meaning they look for fish to cast to).

Ball said she was getting a drink when she noticed that the two men had quit talking before shouting to her: "Julie, this one is your record."

Ball dropped her iced tea, grabbed her rod and spotted the fish the two were talking about. She begged for the fish to "please eat, please eat" after making her first cast.

It did - instantly going on a line-peeling run right at the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel.

Ball and her crew were able to turn the fish, which got close enough to the boat where they almost had a chance to gaff and land it.

The cobia, though, skirted off, sounded, then settled in for a grueling fight.

After 1 hour and 40 minutes of back and forth, Ball had her record - which turned out to be about 3 1/2 pounds heavier than the existing mark.

Ball said she now wants to set her sights on several flyrod world records.

"I've been so busy lately with work and IGFA stuff that I haven't been fishing as much as usual," she said. "So I really want to make my trips count now."

Lee Tolliver, (757) 222-5844, lee.tolliver@pilotonline.com

Source: Hamptonroads.com

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drives a nice free Excursion to. The perfect woman, good looking, fishs like a pro, and is a dentist. The down side is she is MARRIED!!!!. LOL. Great job Julie.

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