The postman always rings twice.
For Keith Parrott, a University of Kentucky junior out of North Laurel High School, that familiar movie title was good news when he received packages on two days late last week.
The postman's first delivery came wrapped in a large, plain envelope.
As he began to open, "I really didn't have any idea what it was," he said. "Then I realized halfway what it was, and it was like opening a Christmas present or something. I started ripping into it. I finally got. I thought it was pretty cool."
"It" was his copy of Trap & Field, the official magazine of the Amateur Trapshooting Association. On the cover was his photo, hailing his win in the ATA's Grand American Handicap event.
Two days later came his "Super Bowl-style" championship ring.
Parrott, 20, won his title in the 112th Grand American World Trapshooting Tournament in August at Sparta, Ill.
Competing against 2,275 others, Parrott tied Randy Buhr of Washington, Mo., by shooting 100-for-100.
In a shootoff, Parrott went 25-for-25, while Buhr was 22-for-25.
"Really, you're trying not to think about (a perfect round) too hard because, once you start thinking about it, that's when you start missing," said Parrott, 20. "Even though it doesn't seem like it, shotgun shooting is a lot more mental really than it is physical. There's a physical aspect but you really, really have to be focused and make sure you're doing the same thing over and over. Especially with trap, more than any of the other shotgun sports. It's all about precision and doing the same thing exactly the same way over and over and over again."
A Trap & Field description notes that shooters fire at clay targets (approximately 4¼ inches in diameter and 1 1/8-inch in height) launched at varying angles. In singles, shooters fire from the 16-yard line, one target at a time. In doubles, also shot from the 16, two targets are released at the same time. In handicap — Parrott's title event — shooters are assigned a firing line from 19 to 27 yards, based on averages and ability, and fire at one target at a time.
Parrott won from the 21½ -yard line. Buhr shot from the 27.
During the school year, Parrott practices with the club-sport UK shotgun team each Thursday at the Blue Grass Sportsman's League in Wilmore.
Charlie Becknell, president of the Blue Grass Trap Division of BGSL, thought Parrott would "have a chance" in the Grand American, "but you have to be lucky."
"The odds of that are actually quite small because you know it's going to take either 99 or 100 straight to do it, and the margin of error is just so small that you just have to have 'one of those days' to do it."
A mechanical engineering major, Parrott plans to apply for dental school. His father, Wayne, is a dentist.
Growing up in London, Keith started squirrel-hunting at 8 or 9 with his late grandfather, Edison.
Keith, who competed in track and cross country at North Laurel, has been shooting registered trap since 2008. He has been in serious competition for about two years, since joining the UK team.
"I think it's a real feather in the cap for Blue Grass Sportsman's League," Becknell said of Parrott's success. "And I think it's a real eye-opener for the University of Kentucky skeet and trap team."
BGSL lets area college students shoot at member prices and helps the UK team hold a couple of shoots each year. The UK Invitational, scheduled for the weekend of Nov. 5, is expected to draw 100-to-400 participants.
Wayne and Keith's brother, Kevin, also excels in trap. Kevin, a second-year resident in internal medicine at Duke University, was an eight-time all-American during his undergraduate days at UK.
Keith says his greatest asset as a shooter is neither his eye nor his feel but, rather, "having Kevin and Dad to tell me what I'm doing wrong."
He's not doing much wrong now but, in the past, had a tendency to shoot too fast.
"I kind of calmed down a whole lot now," he said. "I'm pretty mechanical and smooth."
And, as any postman would agree, he's pretty good.