BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A Washington County woman has set a new muskellunge (muskie) nontidal state fishing record, according to the Maryland Department of Natural Resources.

Tessa Cosens, 26, caught the fish, which was 32.5 pounds, 49 inches long and had a 24-inch girth, May 6 along the banks of the upper Potomac River in Washington County.

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A relative newcomer to muskie fishing, Cosens – who is several months pregnant and had been feeling under the weather – snagged her record catch after a 15-minute struggle.

“All the guys around me stopped fishing and looked at me,” Cosens told DNR officials. “There is no other fish that fights like a muskie.”

Muskies are one of the largest freshwater fish in the state. Cosens’ catch broke the previous Maryland record of 31.75 pounds, set by Kenneth Files in 2011.

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To help determine the age of the fish, Cosens is donating a sample of the muskie’s scales and cleithrum – a large bone above the gills – to DNR for further analysis.

DNR maintains state records for sport fish in four divisions – Atlantic, Chesapeake, Nontidal and Invasive – and awards plaques to anglers who achieve record catches. Fish caught from privately-owned, fee-fishing waters are not eligible for record consideration.

Anglers reporting a potential record catch should call 443-569-1381 or 410-260-8325. The fish should be immersed in ice water to preserve its weight until it can be checked, confirmed and certified by the department.

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