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SUCK CREEK, Tenn. (WATE) – A Tennessee fisherman nearly broke a 22-year state record when he reeled in a 103-pound catfish over the weekend.

The Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency posted the story of Hamilton County resident David Anderson’s battle to reel in the behemoth catfish on the bank of Suck Creek on Nickajack Reservoir.

The post says Anderson asked his friends to go fishing around 9 p.m. on Saturday, none accepted. Just before midnight, his fishing pole was ripped from its stronghold and he went on Facebook live to document his hour-long fight to reel in the catfish.

After securing the fish by rope for the night, a certified scale was brought in the following morning to confirm the fish’s weight: 103 pounds. The record for the biggest catfish caught in Tennessee is held by Robert E. Lewis on the Cumberland River in 1998.

The catfish was released back into Nickajack Reservoir after the weight was recorded and photos were taken.

“At this point, I just wanted to let it go. You just don’t see them this big and I was concerned,” Anderson told TWRA.

“This is more than just a big fish. This near record fish illustrates the potential for many of our reservoirs across the state. Tennessee offers great fishing opportunities and we hope people are enjoying these resources.”

TWRA Region III Reservoir Biologist Mike Jolley

Anderson told TWRA he has been fishing for 38 years and shares his passion with his nine-year-old son, Avery.

“If you want your kids to talk with you, take them fishing. Fishing opens another door of communication for families and kids. It brings friends and families closer together,” Anderson said.