Williams Lake bowler Larry Andrews made history Thursday, Oct. 13 when he threw 12 strikes in a row for a perfect 450-point game at Cariboo Bowl.
In Cariboo Bowl’s 57-year existence, just two perfect games have been pitched.
“I’ve been bowling since I was five years old,” Andrews told the Tribune. “It took me 60 years to get a perfect game and it was friggin’ awesome and nice to share it with everybody (at the bowling alley). Everybody was supportive as could be.”
Coming into his regular Thursday Night Bowling League, Andrews said he hadn’t been happy with his scores to date.
As the strikes began piling up, Andrews’ mind started thinking: what if?
“After seven strikes I started to get a little nervous — getting sweaty palms and thinking: ‘I’ve got to do something to calm myself down,’ so I had a little talk with myself.”
One of his top fellow lakecity bowlers, Kevin McAlpine, came to mind and Andrews said he thought to himself: how would Kevin handle this?
“He’s just a really aggressive bowler. I thought if Kevin was doing this, would he just stay as aggressive as could be?” Andrews said. “I just went up there and said: ‘throw it like Kevin would’ and it calmed me down and let me stay in the groove.”
After nine strikes in nine frames, Andrews remained calm while thinking about the possibility of a perfect game.
“The last three (strikes) were kind of in a fog,” he said. “There was just so much support there from everybody and from management.”
Unbeknownst to Andrews at the time of the game, he’ll now be receiving $1,000 from Cariboo Bowl, along with a prize pack from the B.C. Five Pin Bowling Association.
“I didn’t know that and I’m glad I didn’t because I would have choked,” Andrews said.
In Canada, only 10 to 20 perfect games are bowled throughout the nation per year.
“I’m feeling pretty special,” he said.
The last time a perfect game was thrown at Cariboo Bowl was eight years ago by Morgan Mailhiot. Two years ago, Andrews also bowled a 400 game — his highest prior to his 450-point game.
“I’m always boring my co-worker with stories about bowling and I was about to leave Thursday night and he says: ‘hey, you’re bowling tonight?’ And I said: ‘yeah and I’m not happy with my Thursday night bowling and I’m not happy with my average and he actually said: ‘you’ll have a story in the morning.'”