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Double Drop Buck Killed On Newton Water Authority Hunt

Bryan Lackey said that before shooting his 170-inch buck, he missed one bigger—twice!

Craig James | September 27, 2022

Bryan Lackey, of Covington, with a double drop-tine buck killed on Newton County’s Water Authority hunt.

Around 1:30 p.m. on Sept. 15, Bryan Lackey, of Covington, was perched overlooking a 75-acre soybean field with high hopes a big buck would cross his path. 

“I was participating in the annual Newton County Water Authority Hunt, and since I had killed the biggest doe on last year’s hunt, I got first pick on the area I wanted and the dates I wanted,” said Bryan.

The soybeans stood around 2 1/2 feet high in the field, except in the back left corner of the field where Bryan had decided to climb.

“They had it mowed down back there, the deer sign was just crazy,” said Bryan.

Around 3 p.m., deer began to enter the field, including a really nice 10-pointer that came to within 15 yards of Bryan’s location. Despite it being a good deer, Bryan decided to pass.

“The buck I was waiting for was one a bunch of us local folks know as Chandelier. He’s a massive deer, probably near 200 inches of horns on his head,” said Bryan.

As luck would have it, Chandelier entered the field around 6:15 and closed to within 51 yards. Bryan carefully aimed and let a bolt fly from his crossbow. The results were less than Bryan had hoped for, as he’d missed the massive buck.

“He took off into the woodline, and then came back out five minutes later. I took another shot and missed again. I sat there in disbelief, not believing I’d missed a second time,” said Bryan.

After five or so minutes, Bryan was getting ready to stand up, when he saw three bucks approaching the field, one of which was a giant 10-point, double-drop tine buck. Focused on the task at hand, Bryan waited patiently for the drop-tine monster to close in.

“There was a limb blocking me from getting a shot, so I sat there telling myself to be patient and wait for him to give me a good look. As soon as he cleared the limb, I let him hold the arrow.”

The deer took off, obviously hit good, running approximately 70 yards along the edge of the field before crashing into the woodline.

“I don’t usually get too worked up when I’m hunting, but when I saw him go down, I let out a Ric Flair, ‘Wooooo’ right there in the stand. I was pumped up.”

The buck was green-scored by a friend of Bryan’s at nearly 170 inches.

The buck has an impressive 24-inch inside spread and 27 1/2-inch main beams. The deer’s drop tines stretched the tape to 8 1/2 and 6 inches. Sadly, Bryan wasn’t an active GON subscriber at the time of the kill.

“My nephew, Travis Lackey, actually killed the biggest doe on this year’s hunt, so we will get the first pick of our area again next year. If Chandelier makes it through to next season, we’re gonna get him, and you can bet we’ll be current on our GON subscription,” Bryan said with a laugh.

Quota archery deer hunts on Newton County Water Authority lands are for Newton County residents only and are done on a quota-draw system.

Newton County Best Bucks Of All-Time

Rank Score Name Year County Method Photo
1 184 Gene Almand 1966 Newton Gun View 
2 180 3/8 David Moon 1972 Newton Gun View 
3 172 7/8 Bill Shirley Jr. 1967 Newton Gun
4 197 3/8 (NT) R.H. Bumbalough 1969 Newton Gun View 
5 168 1/8 Johnny Stewart 1967 Newton Gun View 
6 165 1/8 Travis Sherlock 2011 Newton Gun View 
7 163 James Sullivan 1969 Newton Gun
8 160 Junior Ellis 1986 Newton Gun
9 182 4/8 (NT) Charles Cline 2000 Newton Gun
10 158 4/8 Bud Cronan 1969 Newton Gun

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