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South Texas Trophies
LEIGHTON A. WIER
And perhaps he had -- until Nov. 27 last year, that is. That's when Wier found himself looking at a familiar deer with a big set of antlers.
Despite the buck's headgear, Wier wasn't sure if he should pull the trigger on the whitetail, a deer easily recognizable because of a distinctive feature that the deer-hunting dentist described as a "brown streak that ran all the way through his belly.
"I've been watching this deer for several years, actually," he explained. "From our videos, you could go back and find him all the way back to when he was a fawn. I had followed him all the way up to last year when he was 7 1/2 years old."
Thinking that the deer might only score in the mid-160s, Wier studied it carefully, his .308 Winchester Model 70 nearby. Finally, after careful deliberation in the clear South Texas dawn, the hunter decided that it was high time to take this buck.
"When the sun finally got up, I could see through my scope and I waited for him to turn," Wier said. "When he got into position, I shot and I dropped him like a sack of potatoes. He never moved."
A few moments later, Wier was on the move toward a buck that most hunters can only dream of taking. "I've had so many disappointments when I've walked up on bucks before, but this one didn't have any ground shrinkage. He looked pretty darn good. I didn't realize how good he was, I guess, until we took him into the barn and weighed him. He field-dressed at 188 pounds!"
In fact, the deer proved to be not only the heaviest buck ever tagged on Wier's hunting property, but also the biggest-antlered whitetail ever harvested there, too. Needless to say, it didn't take Wier or his hunting buddies long to discover that fact with the aid of a tape measure.
"When I rough-scored him and got 180-something, I really thought I must have misadded," Wier said. "I went back and checked my figures and thought, 'My gosh -- this deer was more than we thought he was!'"
Indeed he was. Sporting an official TBGA score of 185 3/8 inches gross and 178 2/8 inches net, the Wier buck was good enough to rank as the fourth-best typical reported in Region 8 last year.
What will Wier do this fall for an encore as he hunts the La Salle property for the 23rd straight year?
"Realistically, I'll probably take a lot of video and pictures this year," he chuckled. "But if the right deer steps out, I'm available."
FRANK J. TILICEK III
This is exactly why Schulenberg resident Frank J. Tilicek III was sitting in a deer stand on Nov. 19, trying to help his nephew Darren Edner collect a management buck.
A veteran deer hunter, having hunted since the age of 10, the now-48-year-old Tilicek knew better than to leave his .270 Winchester behind; however, when it comes to deer hunting, you just never know.
"I had just gone to my stand and had my nephew with me and this deer just happened to come out," Tilicek recalled. "It was the first time I had seen him since the season before."
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