Crystal Lake resident catches potential record-breaking rock bass

Crystal Lake's Jacob Caso holds his record-breaking rock bass.

Jacob Caso figured he’d throw in one last cast.

The Crystal Lake resident, 25, and his wife Jess, 35, had gone out near the dam at Wonder Lake on Sunday night. After not catching anything noteworthy, it started to rain, so Jacob decided to give it one last shot.

When his bobber went under water, he knew he was dealing with a different fish. He ended up catching a two-pound rock bass, an Illinois record.

“I realized that I have a monster here,” Jacob said.

The two weren’t sure what kind of fish it was and Jacob wanted to throw it back, but Jess said they should hold on to it. Once they sent some photos to friends and did some research online, they learned the fish was a rock bass and that the record in Illinois was one pound, 10 ounces set in 1987 by George Nielson.

For the fish to be certified, it will need to be weighed on a certified scale and witnessed by an Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) representative, who will also need to see pictures. Jacob will need to sign some forms and send them to Springfield after.

The couple plans to send over videos and photos to the IDNR to verify the record and they will mount the fish to remember the battle it gave.

“That’s how good he is at fishing,” Jess said. “He’s like ‘I got something but it’s fighting me different.’ It wasn’t a common fish and he knew that before he got it out of the water.”