Jovi Theriot was a little battered and bruised Saturday morning after getting pounded in the surf for more than five hours on Elmer’s Island— including several encounters with the business end of his topwater’s treble hooks — but he was happy with a day that yielded four huge speckled trout all in the 4- to 6-pound range.

Competition for space was tough and there were lots of people surf-fishing, but Theriot said the key was moving out just a little further and fishing between the breakers. It wasn’t necessarily easy, but he thought it was worth it.

“It was real rough Saturday. We went a little bit further than everybody else,” said Theriot, 24, of Lockport. “It was kind of hard to stand it was so rough. But in between the wave breaks, they were all right there.

“We could have gone out there with live shrimp and easily caught our limit. But to catch those bigger ones, you had to resemble that mullet out there because that’s what the big ones were after.”

Last weekend, Jared Pennison and Bradley Matte had success in the surf on Elmer's Island using suspended twitchbaits. Theriot said he caught the big trout Saturday with red and white MirrOmullet topwater lures.

“There were a lot of mullet out there,” he said. “That red and white MirrOmullet resembles that dying mullet on the surface.”

Theriot, who was fishing with 40-pound braid and a 15-pound mono leader, said he went out with eight topwater lures, but came back with only two.

“I was tying straight to the braid and kept breaking off,” he said. “Then I switched to the mono leader and we started catching. We might have had ten bites all morning, but every bite we had was a real big trout. 

“We caught four, all between 4 and 6 pounds.”

Standing in belly-deep water, he would let the first wave hit him and then cast in front of the next breaker. He only had 20 to 30 seconds to work the lure before getting hit again.

“You had to cast in between those bigger waves,” he said. “Once that other wave would come, that was pretty much your window.”

With no net, Theriot said he would try to head back toward the beach with a fish on the line.

“That was the hardest part. You had to try to work them into more shallow water, because it was almost impossible with all those treble hooks,” he said. “I’m more full of treble hook holes in my hands and arms than anything. I got caught once in the arm. They were thrashing all over.”

Even though it was rough deeper in the surf, Theriot thought moving away from the crowds was key.

“I think they had so many people, the trout were staying away from that,” he said. “Those bigger trout are smart — they know when there’s a bunch of fishermen. They’re trying to get away from that.”

Action wasn’t exactly fast and furious Saturday, but the quality of the fish was impressive.

“We weren’t getting that many bites, but the bites we were getting were huge trout,” he said. “We spent all morning and we got beat up, and we only got about ten bites. 

“But it was worth it to me for those four fish.”