Houma veterinarian Dr. Bill Marcello left the Louisiana Sportsman Show shortly before the Big Buck Contest winners were announced Sunday afternoon, but he ended up receiving an exciting phone call on his way home.

Marcello’s name was drawn from all adult participants in the contest, and he won the brand new Yamaha 350 Grizzly grand prize. 

Big buck entries were up from last year, and Dave Moreland, retired Deer Program leader and contest coordinator, said this year’s show — which was hosted by the state chapter of the Quality Deer Management Association — featured lots of solid deer.

“It was good. Louisiana had lots of deer that will make the state recognition program, and Mississippi had some that will make the Magnolia Records,” Moreland said. “The out-of-state bow category was exceptional, because most of them will make Pope & Young — or at least come close. Most all of the deer entered were typicals, and we had one big non-typical Mississippi buck.”

That big non-typical belonged to Susie Taylor of Ridgeland, Miss., whose wall-hanger measured 185 ⅛ inches and qualified for Boone & Crockett recognition.  

But Garrett Smith’s 171 ⅝-inch typical Tensas buck qualified for the B&C all-time record book, Moreland said.

In a random drawing from among the eight category winners, Doug Champagne received a special QDMA edition Weatherby .270 WIN with a Leupold scope from the South Louisiana Branch of the QDMA. 

In a random drawing from all Youth Division participants, Bricen Templet received a $250 Bowie’s Outfitters gift card also donated by the South Louisiana Branch of QDMA.

Smith’s big Tensas buck also earned him a 27-quart Orca cooler from Spillway Sportsman in Port Allen for having the highest-scoring Louisiana buck in the show.

The complete list of category winners, their scores and kill locations are:

 Louisiana - Gun Division

1)  Garrett Smith — 171 ⅝ inches, typical (Tensas Parish) 

2)  Dennis Bell — 152 ⅞ inches, typical (West Feliciana Parish)

3)  Chris Landry — 152 ⅝, typical (Pointe Coupee Parish)

Louisiana - Bow Division

1)  Brody Parker — 160 ⅝ inches, typical (Rapides Parish)

2) Damien Leonard — 154 inches, typical (Avoyelles Parish)

3) Roland F. Dugas Jr. — 150 ⅛ inches, typical (Avoyelles Parish)

Mississippi - Gun Division

1)  Susie Taylor — 185 ⅛ inches, non-typical (Jefferson County)  

2)  Chris Bourque — 148 6/8 inches, typical (Lincoln County)

3)  Austin Ber — 142 ⅞ inches, typical (Wilkinson County)

Mississippi - Bow Division

1)  Doug Champagne — 121 6/8 inches, typical (Madison County)

Out-of-State — Gun Division

1)  Gavin Housend — 147 4/8 inches, typical (Oklahoma)

2)  Stacey Butler — 137 ⅛ inches, typical (Texas)

3)  Shannon Housend — 131 2/8 inches, typical (Texas)

Out-of-State - Bow Division

1)  Thomas Gibbens — 160 2/8 inches, typical (Indiana)

2)  Brandon Harris — 157 4/8 inches, typical (Ohio)

3)  Dana Wall — 155 ⅞ inches, typical (Kansas)

Youth Division

1)  Trey Tate — 169 ⅞ inches, typical (Kansas)

2)  Lane Dudley — 138 2/8 inches, typical (Texas)

3)  Broles Beatty — 136 4/8 inches, typical (West Feliciana Parish)

Muzzleloader/Crossbow Division

1)  Michael Taylor — 157 inches, typical (Mississippi) 

2)  Noldon Dominique Jr. — 147 ⅛ inches, typical (Missouri)

3)  Darrel Dorsey — 149 2/8 inches, non-typical (Tensas Parish)