LKT reels in big catches for anglers, researchers

Port Isabel-South Padre Press

There was a guardian angel out on the water with Rachel Franceschi and team Comin’ In Hot Saturday. She and her friends, who were participating in the 36th Annual Ladies Kingfish Tournament (LKT), believe that angel was her dad, Jim, who died in April.

Franceschi’s friends honored her late father by including him on their team shirts. “It says ‘Fishing For Jimberly,’” Franceschi said. “My dad, his name was Jim. I called him Jimberly,” she said.

It was a little luck from Jimberly that led to Franceschi catching the prize winning kingfish during the all-female fishing tournament. “I don’t bring anything in ever. Ever,” she said.

“I always thought I was bad luck, and I’m not competitive,” she added. But, with one last boat yet to arrive at the dock at Southpoint Marina in Port Isabel, it looked like the unlucky streak was broken. Franceschi’s 39.75 pound fish topped the leaderboard, which was marked on a dry erase board at the edge of the dock.

It only took about 10 minutes for the Brownsville native to reel in the winner, she said. “I thought it was nothing at first,” Franceschi said as her friends laughed.

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