Our Family


Capt. Igor Zgodic and mate Nick Zammarelli operate out of Newport, Rhode Island on a 32’ Sailfish named The Bee.

Both their love for fishing began at the age of 10; Igor fishing lakes and ponds in Canada and Nick doing the same locally in Rhode Island. What began as recreational largemouth and smallmouth bass fishing as kids, eventually turned into a passion for targeting large striped bass from Narragansett Bay to Block Island.

Living in New England and having one of the best pelagic fisheries in the world, it was inevitable that the two would eventually get lured out to the tuna grounds. After a few trips on friend’s boats fishing for these beasts, the duo quickly developed their obsession for making offshore runs chasing bluefin/yellowfin tuna. The rest would be history. Now, The Bee almost exclusively leaves the dock to chase the thrill of fighting tuna.

It wasn’t until recently that Nick and Igor decided to hunt these monsters on light tackle. For them, trolling and fighting these fish on big rods and heavy reels just wasn’t their speed - they wanted to feel the unique connection to the fish that light tackle gear offers.

After the 2022 season, they decided to put the trolling gear away for good and focus solely on jig and pop. In 2023, the Reel Z squad specialized in jig/pop and their best season yet. When you have days quadrupled up jigging bluefins, or you feel like your arms are about to fall off from hooking 10+ yellowfins on poppers, that’s when the light tackle addiction really begins and this team hasn’t looked back.

Reel Z was formed as a play on words because their last names both begin with Z, Zammarelli and Zgodic. What began as an Instagram page to highlight and share their catches has turned into a family and a world of opportunity. Throughout the summer, you’ll see friends/family/clients showcased on the Reel Z instagram page holding up their personal best fish, typically with a UVT lure hanging from the fish’s mouth aboard The Bee!

Reel Z is proud and excited to be part of the UVT family and its future endeavors.