FIRST FISH OF THE DAY WINS LISA CRONK THE DERBY CROWN

Lisa Cronk – Women’s Derby Queen 2020

VALDEZ, Alaska – Well over 400 lady anglers hit the waters out of Valdez Saturday in hopes of catching the largest silver salmon and bringing home the coveted Valdez Women’s Silver Salmon Derby crown. At the end of the day, it was Lisa Cronk of Valdez who captured the crown and she was more excited about the title and pink bathrobe than the prize money. “I am, well, tired but besides being tired I am ecstatic. I have dreamt about sitting in that throne and it’s just mind-blowing” Cronk said. The theme of this year’s Women’s Derby was “Namaste Safe”. In an effort to mitigate large crowds, derby organizers did not hold opening and closing ceremonies at the Civic Center and limited numbers at weigh-in by limiting winners to top three fish and encouraging only those with a fish big enough to get on the leader board to weigh in.

When asked what it meant to have an outlet like fishing this year, Cronk responded “It was really important. We love to be outside. During the pandemic with everything going on we really relied on our boat …a lot to get out of the house, to be together as a family. We started off the season with a lot of shrimping and we get to end it with what we love, we love to fish”. The fishing season might be over for Cronk as she’s a teacher going back to school, but fishing should be hot through the end of the derbies.

Cronk caught her silver salmon out by Glacier Entrance on a wiggle wart at a depth of about 150 feet. Cronk won $1,000 cash and $1,000 in prizes from Prospector Outfitters in addition to the tiara and bathrobe. Dezirae Wiley of Valdez took 2nd place in the Valdez Women’s Derby with a 12.58 pound silver she caught aboard her Dad’s boat and Nedra Buck of Valdez captured 3rd place with a 12.22 pound silver salmon she caught fishing with her daughter’s family.

This weekend silver salmon were schooled up out at Glacier Island and scattered throughout the about Sound. As August continues, silver salmon will move toward the narrows and into Port Valdez. Currently holding onto 2nd place overall in the silver salmon derby, Tom Hall reeled in a 12.70 pounder trolling at a depth of 60 feet. “It was a great fish; I thought it was a king at first and then we did a double take on it and there it was a silver,” said Hall. “I was like wow! We may be on the board!”

In the Valdez Halibut Derby, Jim Rothenbuhler of Salcha is still leading with the 201.2 pound halibut he caught June 23rd. Kenny Tussey of North Pole, Alaska is currently in 2nd place overall with a 193.4 pound halibut and Andy Eiman of Valdez is holding onto 3rd place right now with a 180.4 pound halibut.

Valdez Women’s Silver Salmon Derby WINNERS

1st        Lisa Cronk     Valdez, AK     13.20 lbs.    Aug 8     Private

2nd       Dezirae Wiley   Valdez, AK     12.58 lbs.   Aug 8     Dan Orion

3rd        Nedra Buck       Valdez, AK      12.22 lbs.  Aug 8    Private

Halibut Derby – Overall Leaders

1st        Jim Rothenbuhler      Salcha, AK   201.2 lbs.    June 23    The Bucketlist

2nd       Kenny Tussey     North Pole, AK     193.4 lbs.    July 5     Dan Orion

3rd        Andy Eiman        Valdez, AK            180.4 lbs.     July 18      Crista June

Halibut Derby – Weekly Winners

1st                Brett Nelson        Palmer, AK        115.0 lbs.         Aug 2               Dan Orion
2nd        Brett Nelson            Palmer, AK        91.6 lbs.           Aug 2               Dan Orion

Silver Derby – Overall Leaders

1st        Alisa Mac Innes     Tampa, FL              14.88 lbs.     Aug 7         Josie Whales
2nd        Michael Murphy      Delta Junction, AK       13.58 lbs.     Aug 4       Faithful   
3rd        Lisa Cronk                Valdez, AK           13.20 lbs.      Aug 8        Private

For more information on Valdez Fish Derbies, visit www.valdezfishderbies.com.