posted on March 17, 2013 15:01
By Mike Handley
Had 14-year-old Sabrina Nisly's tennis practice not been canceled because of the rain on Sept. 13, she might have ended her first-ever deer season with a big fat "love."
But rain it did. And because her father, Joe, decided a few raindrops never hurt anybody, Sabrina wound up winning the world cup of deer hunting.
About 5 p.m. that day, father and daughter went to a quarter-section of land where they'd erected an 18-foot-tall double ladder stand in August. The stand leans against a straight elm beside a creek that splits 160 acres of CRP. The 75-yard-wide strip of trees is a main travel corridor for deer filtering out of the CRP to the neighbor's bean field across the road and to the south.
Joe dropped Sabrina off on the road, at the creek, so she could walk to the stand while he drove on to the corner of the property to park well away from the crossing. He then walked in and joined her.
The rain lessened to a drizzle, and then stopped altogether about 6:30. Not long afterward, they spotted a couple of does wafting through the trees.
About 7:30, Joe saw a nice 8-pointer at 200 yards, pointed it out, and then told his daughter to get ready.
"I was thinking, 'Okay, this is the PERFECT deer for Sabrina,'" he said.
When Sabrina turned to look and raise her rifle, she spotted a second and much larger buck about 30 yards behind the 4x4.
After much twisting, aiming and re-aiming, Sabrina finally was able to acquire the big buck in her sights and squeeze the trigger. She also managed a follow-up shot when the fleeing deer stopped after running 15 yards.
"I'd planned to wait awhile before getting down, but I just couldn't do it," Joe said. "I had to know ... We had to know."
The buck ran only 60 yards before collapsing.
At 191 3/8 inches (BTR composite score), Sabrina's isn't the largest buck felled during the 2012 youth season in Kansas, but it's definitely one of the finest. The rest of her story will appear in RACK magazine this fall.