Ohio Hunter Tags a New Women’s State-Record Crossbow Buck

Apart from one distant sighting last year, Trisha Lucius had only ever seen the buck on nighttime trail camera photos
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Courtesy of Trisha Lucius

When she settled into her blind on Oct. 8, Trisha Lucius knew the big buck was nearby. The giant deer she’d been hunting had reappeared on trail camera just the evening before.

“We knew the buck was on the farm for a couple years, but we only had photos of him at night,” Trisha tells Outdoor Life.

A giant buck in vvelvet on trail camera.
An August trail camera photo of the big buck in velvet. Courtesy of Trisha Lucius

Trisha, a factory worker who lives in Upper Sandusky, Ohio, has been hunting the small family farm in Wyandot County for a couple years with her husband, Brian. While hunting out of the same blind last year, Trisha spotted the big buck—nicknamed Brutus for his sheer size—hundreds of yards away in another field. She’d never seen him up close until this month.

Trisha and Brian had built the small box blind overlooking soybean fields and patchy timber, and that’s where Trisha was hunting when a doe appeared. Around 7 p.m., she spotted Brutus walking right toward her.

“He was coming from a bean field into the timber. He’d take three or four steps, stop, then move again,” Trisha says. “When he started walking [again], I was ready. [I was] expecting him to stop again so I could shoot.”

A woman holds up the antlers of a big buck on a concrete floor.
Trisha with her best buck to date. Courtesy of Trisha Lucius

The buck did just that, finally stopping at 20 yards and never taking his eyes off the doe in front of the blind. Trisha held behind the buck’s shoulder and squeezed the trigger.

“I heard the arrow hit him, and I saw his back legs kick up,” says Trisha. “The buck and doe each ran different ways, and I immediately called my husband and told him I shot Brutus.”

She thought she’d heard the buck crash, but she waited in the blind for about 45 minutes until Brian arrived with her brother, Michael Daring, in tow. She climbed out of the blind and the trio walked into the field together.

A woman scores a big set of whitetail antlers on a kitchen table.
Lori Hughes of Buckmasters of Ohio stands behind the massive antlers. Buckmasters of Ohio

“We had flashlights and found the arrow, but not much blood,” said Trisha. “Brian asked if he was sure I shot him [well] because we didn’t find much blood in the woods for about 20 yards. Then the blood trail got better and better, and we found the buck dead less than 100 yards from where my arrow hit him.”

Overjoyed, the three worked together to field dress the buck, then contacted Toby and Lori Hughes, an official scorer for Buckmasters of Ohio. Using the Buckmasters scoring system, which differs slightly from the more traditional Boone and Crockett Club scoring method (for one, Buckmasters does not put such a premium on symmetry). According to Lori Hughes, the buck has a standard 5×5 with a total of 17 points, heavy main beams measuring 28 inches long, and a spread of 20 4/8 inches.

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The buck’s total Buckmaster’s score of 210 inches qualifies it as the new No. 1 women’s crossbow buck in the Buckmaster’s record book, according to Hughes. The buck ranks as No. 4 overall in the irregular crossbow buck category.

“This is a buck of a lifetime!” Trisha wrote in a Facebook post the day after her hunt. “I would like to thank my husband Brian Lucius for getting me into hunting and showing me everything I need to know.”