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Marianna Monster is highest-grossing typical

Stan Sims of Marianna, Florida finished #6 in the “Buck of the Year” contest with the #5 highest-scoring typical killed during the 2009-10 season, taken on Jan. 9, 2010 on his family farm in Jackson County.

Stan’s 11-point Panhandle monster amassed the highest gross score (total antler length and mass) out of all typical bucks taken last season (154-1/8 inches). That gross score (before deductions for differences between the two antlers and abnormal points) beat out the gross scores of the #1 (153-3/8), #2 (153-5/8) and #3 (153-3/8) typical bucks.

A missing G3 on the right antler accounted for a 7-5/8-inch deduction and cost Sims a much higher net score than his final 138-5/8, which was lowered 10-7/8 inches for differences between the two antlers and another 4-5/8 inches for two abnormal points.

Sims described his hunt this way: “It all started at daylight on Saturday morning. I helped my wife into her stand and walked back to mine. When I started up the tree with my climber everything began to go wrong.

“When I finally got up the tree and got ready to sit down, the top part of my climber slid about two feet down the tree. By the time I got my gun pulled up it was good daylight and the wind started to blow right in my face. By this time I am thinking I should have stayed home.

“It was about 7 a.m. when I heard something behind me. As I turned to look, there he stood about 10 or 15 yards to my right. When I looked down, there was a doe right under me, so I tried watching her to keep my heart from racing.

“They stayed there for about 10 minutes and he started grunting at her and stomping his foot. Then they started to move. He got about 25 yards from me, when I started to bring my gun up and the ghillie suit I was wearing got hung on my climber, stopping me from raising my right arm up.

“I made one quick snatch to free my arm and drew down on him. My scope was on 9 power, so all I saw was a brown blur. I knew I didn’t have time to try to turn it down to 3, so I pulled my head back away from the scope, pulled the trigger, and away he ran.

Thinking I had missed, I climbed down the tree, mad as I could be at myself for not checking my scope first. As I made my way to where he had been standing, all I found was a pile of white hair. My heart sank! But, I never leave without looking really good, so I kept on walking. There was a blood trail! And from the look of the blood, I knew he wasn’t far, so I squatted down to look under some limbs, and there he was!

The biggest buck of my life! I was as happy as a kid on Christmas Day!

Sims’ buck had 23-6/8 and 24-5/8-inch main beams and near 5-inch circumferences at the base. The tip-to-tip spread was 10-5/8 inches and the inside spread measured 19-2/8 inches.