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Williams rolls two 300s in two weeks

Charles Williams, 34, bowled his second 300 game in two weeks Thursday during Commercial League play. There have been only seven perfect games at Red Carpet Lanes in 40 years. (The Vicksburg Post/MELANIE DUNCAN)

[02/01/01] Lightning doesn’t strike twice, but Charles Williams does. Actually, Williams struck 12 times Thursday night.

Two weeks after bowling his first perfect game, Williams rolled another 300 on Thursday during Commercial League play at Red Carpet Lanes.

It was the seventh 300 game in the 40-plus-year history of Red Carpet Lanes, the fifth in the last two years and the third in four months.

“It’s like a miracle,” said Williams, who joined Todd Scallions (1996, 1999) as the only bowlers to roll two 300 games at Red Carpet Lanes.

“The first time, people were saying to me they’ve been bowling for so long and had never done it, and I’ve been fortunate enough to bowl two of them in (two) weeks. That’s amazing to me,” said Williams, a 34-year-old table games dealer at Ameristar casino.

John Magruder, owner of Red Carpet Lanes, said he’s never seen anything like Williams’ feat.

“With higher-caliber bowlers (I have), but never with somebody who carries a 185 average,” Magruder said.

After he rolled his first perfect game on Jan. 11, Williams said co-workers and teammates kept asking him when he was going to get the next one.

They didn’t have to wait long.

“The first game, I just came out striking and (opponents) were saying, The only way you’re going to beat us is if you continue to strike. And my teammates said, You go on and do that, and we’ll catch up with you later,’ ” Williams said with a laugh.

The joking with his opponents and teammates helped to loosen things up, Williams said. During the first perfect game, people stayed away, trying not to jinx him. This time, people swarmed him the entire time.

Obviously, it didn’t hurt.

Williams had only one wobbly strike, in the fifth frame, and he started his next game with three straight strikes. He finished with a 709 series, the first time he’s broken the 700-mark for a three-game set.

“It was actually a little easier (than the first one). I didn’t get nervous a whole lot,” Williams said. “After I bowled the 300, I turned around and bowled three more in a row. So the next game they were saying, Well here he goes again.’ Pop asked me if I was ready to bowl a 900 (series), and I said Well, let me get through this second one and then I’ll let you know.’ ”

So now that he’s making a habit of perfection, when will Williams get the hat trick?

“I hope next Thursday,” Williams said with a laugh. “Because my ball is really going strong. People ask what I’m doing different, and I’m saying my approach towards the foul line is what’s making it happen …. I’m not second-guessing myself anymore. I’m seeing exactly what I need to do, and things are working out for me.”