POTW: Damaraquis “Butch” Williams

Published 10:05 pm Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Damaraquis “Butch” Williams should consider officially changing his nickname. Maybe he could try “Big Shot” or “Iceman.” Or maybe he could go with “Cash” because it’s always reliable and good anywhere.

And over the last week, Williams has been nothing short of reliable and good from anywhere.

The Sweet Water senior made his presence known last week in the first round of the AHSAA Class 1A, Area 5 tournament. After helping to lead his team past A.L. Johnson in the play-in game Tuesday, Williams put on an absolute show Friday against top-seeded host Linden.

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The Bulldog point guard hung up double-digit point totals in the first half and emerged from the locker room with a mission in the third quarter. Just seconds into the game’s third period, Williams brought the ball down the floor, headed for the top of the arc, took a few steps to the left and drained a three.

In the fourth quarter, after Linden had closed the gap to three points, it was Williams who drove the lane, absorbed the defensive contact and knocked down the free throws.

By night’s end, he had 23 points and a starring role in Sweet Water’s upset script.

Then came Monday night. The Bulldogs were one win away from winning their first area title and needed a complete game in order to topple Sunshine.

Enter Williams. He set the tone from the outset, burying triples early in the first quarter to counter the three-point barrage of Sunshine’s John May. Then he stayed ready for the rest of the night; popping shots from the outside, knifing through the lane and knocking down free throws. His 15 well-timed points were good enough to lead the Bulldogs in scoring and put the finishing touches on his claim to the tournament MVP.

But the most impressive part of Williams, who has been on the varsity squad since the seventh grade, is his demeanor. It never changes. No matter what the situation, Williams’ expression tells of a cool intensity that is always enough to get the job done.

Call him “Damaraquis” or “Butch” or whatever else. But make no mistake, Williams deserves to be called “Player of the Week.”