Early Saturday morning, Alexis Aratari surprised herself by killing her first buck -- and then surprised herself further when she discovered that it was a 10-point deer.
"It was really shocking," she says. "My heart was going about a mile a minute."
The feat, which is impressive for anyone of any age, was even more incredible in Alexis's case due to the fact that she has only been hunting for two years.
"It's really rare to have girl hunters, especially teenagers, get that big of a buck," the 16-year-old explains. "So it was really lucky that my first buck was a 10-pointer. It was beginner's luck."
Alexis, who goes out hunting every day during the season, says that she spotted the buck at around 8:30 Saturday morning. When she shot at it with her bow, it dropped right away. Her father, Mike Aratari, who was in a tree on the other side of the field, had seen the buck earlier and hoped that she would get it.
"We both thought it was just a six- or eight-pointer," Alexis said. "When he heard the shot, he yelled for me to stay up in the tree and he looked at it and told me it was a 10-pointer. I couldn't believe it."
"Now he says he has to try to top it," she laughs. "He's been hunting for 20 years, and he's only gotten two 10-pointers."
Hunting is clearly in Alexis's blood. Along with her father, her uncle and aunt also enjoy the pastime.
"All my family is really proud," she says. "We sent them all pictures, and my uncle in Florida has been telling everyone about it."
So what exactly will become of the massive buck?
"We're sending it to get mounted, and we're going to put it up on the wall next to my dad's 10-pointer," she says with a grin.