The reason why I wrote my book to help any athlete that’s wants to upgrade their game:
When I was six years old, I had two of my fingertips cut of in an accident which ended my baseball pitching career. I then tried golf and bowling. I had way more fun bowling. My average kept getting higher because I was consistent at hitting my target. At the end of junior leagues, I was averaging around 173. I would cash in three of the four events in most every city tournament until I averaged 189. I finally took a few lessons and it helped me to average 200. It seemed like I was stuck there because no one ever talked about the mental game. There were few books on it, and having a positive attitude only took me so far. I went to the book store and got a few books on the mental game.
After getting help for my mental game from these books, I was now averaging over 210. I never had more fun at bowling than I do now. Being over 210 helped me win more money in pot games as well as my team getting into the playoffs. Who would have thought that a book on tennis, would be a big help for bowling? As I continued to become better because of my mental game, the book stores started to stock mental game books. I now have over 200 books for various sports, books on the mental game, motivational books and inspirational books. I’d read only the chapters that would help my game. You can check out my library here.
Right after I retired, I realized that I had much of the book on my computer. While I was a secretary for the Traveling Masters league 20 years ago, I wrote a Mental Momentums section in the weekly newsletter. You can see one of the newsletters here. It had a quote and I would add a few things to help bowlers think about the subject, to help their game. I had several come to me to say they liked the section and that it’s helping their game. Since I never had a great physical game, I now know that the mental game impacts why some athletes become winners and then become champions. Once I got the league online with its own website, I wrote a several articles on factors about the mental game which are on this website.
The last few seasons, I’ve seen bowlers and golfers self-destruct because of their mental game. As I began my book, I was thinking about all the mental game books I read. I wanted something that was different, where athletes who just wanted to have more fun and improve their scores, could do so. I wanted a book that any athlete could relate to me being another pretty good athlete. Most mental game books are written by a PhD, and jumped from subject to subject. I made a list of factors years ago and have 345 in my book. I have never seen any book cover as many factors that are in my book. Obviously, not all factors will influence a match but athletes should be aware of them. Only a few books are workbooks in trying to help you. Some books don’t use actual experiences to help your game. I also never have seen any book that takes you on a step by step approach to improve your mental game, using actual experiences and tips to gain more knowledge.
Planning, practice and keeping a log book are just the start to improving. Dedication, Motivation and setting goals keep you on track. Pre-shot routine, post-shot evaluations and visualization must happen every time to be consistent. Achieving goals, challenges, experience and persistence will help your success. I just quickly went through ways to step up your game. My book gives you 31 days to work on your game to climb to a higher level while learning how to get to the zone. Athletes learn more from practice, watching and reading. Actual competition is where athletes learn adjusting techniques based on their sport and realize how important the mental game is. I give actual competition experience from bowling and golf, which can help other athletes in any sport.
Knowledge is power and is what separates champions from other athletes. Knowing what to try and when to try it, comes from experience. They are very few shortcuts for experience. My book can help you with a few shortcuts along the way. The one main factor that needs to happen from here on, is having fun, not quitting, putting mistakes behind you and keeping your head screwed on. Those athletes that love their sport, put in the work and show it while competing, are the ones getting into Hall of Fames.
I just felt it was time for a non-professional with championships in two different sports, to share knowledge and experience using the mental game. The mental game involves focusing on what you can control and for the shot or play that’s in front of you. Over thinking or over analyzing can get you into trouble. Trial and error is best for practice, but sometimes needs to be done in a match. Most athletes should be able to get to the zone before 31 days. Practice along with consistency is needed to being able to travel there. Practice helps with repeating great shots while consistency is focusing on hitting your attended target. You’ll have to put in some work to get to the zone. Developing a solid pre-shot routine that is dependable must happen to get zoned in. I hope you’ll enjoy reading my book and learning several things. Scoring better makes it more fun. Achieving success will make it real. Being in the zone, makes it real fun. See you in the zone.
NOTE: My accident before I started bowling limited my scoring abilities early in my career. Add the fact that there wasn’t huge prize funds on the PBA tour, I really had no desire to turn pro. Even though I wasn’t interested in turning pro, I tested the waters in a few regionals. My book isn’t about getting athletes to turn pro, it’s about mental toughness and being able to compete at higher levels. Once you climb a level, you can decide if you want to be a professional. I understand that not everyone will want to be a pro for various reasons. But competing at a higher level and having fun is what my book is about. It’s also that in some sports, the better you are, there’s more opportunities to win money. If winning money and having fun isn’t you, maybe you should have stayed up there in Mars. In my book I have 58 actual situations which may help you on the journey to the zone. I’ve also included ten individuals that helped me win championships in both bowling and golf. These moments are highlighted from cover to cover in my book.
The path to excellence started at the early age of 6 with little league baseball. During an accident, he lost 2 finger tips on his throwing hand that ended his baseball career. Tried golf but had to carry his clubs. He shot 160 for 9 holes. Alan’s mom said “You’re not quitting. Never give up.” Alan shot 130 the next day. At least he improved”!! His mom took him bowling and he stopped chasing balls at least for 10 years and it wasn’t long before shooting higher than his 9 hole golf scores. He then started his bowling career bowling in the junior leagues. Alan won three All events titles over 5 years just before bowling with the adults, a singles title, a doubles title and a team title in the Tucson city junior tournaments. Not too bad for a bowler with a slight handicap. It was the start of bigger and better things for the sport he fell in love with.
Alan won the Tucson Bowling city doubles tournament in 1976. He was very good at putting when Putt Putt was open. In 1979, he won an Amateur Putting Association tournament with 24 under par for 54 holes. He was elected league secretary for two seasons and was a tournament director before Iceland Bowl closed. He kept statistics that no other secretary ever did. This is where he got the nickname “Mr. Stats”. From 1999 to 2002 Alan finish in the top 20 season average twice in the Tucson Bowling Association. During 1988 to 1992 serving in the Army, Alan held one of the top two averages on the post he was serving at. He received the A.B.C. award of merit for the 1989-90 season while over in Germany. The Pirmasens Zeibrucken Bowling Association’s Bowler of the year was held April 1990, where Alan beat the other 11 “top” bowlers that season averaging 208 on a reverse blocked center for the win. He won the 12 game Challenge tournament on July 4th, 1996, shooting 390 his final two games and averaging 223.4 for the day.
He was the secretary for the Miller Lite Traveling Masters league for over nine seasons. His last full season being secretary, organized the sweeper for the 24 teams having over $8200 in prize money for the three games in 2004. He had a website for the league which won a national award and was the biggest website for any league in the U.S.A. He held an ABC record for the highest scores without an honor score having 297 and 799. Over 3 years later he shot his first of fifteen 300 games and later recorded an 807. He was the first to shoot a ‘Varapapa 300’ on a sport pattern shooting a TBA sport pattern record of 290 in 2003 at Camino Seco Bowl.
He holds perfection in two sports, 15 perfect 300 games in bowling and a hole in one in golf. The hole in one happened during the Memorial Day tournament in Las Vegas in 2009 on the first shot of the day. I didn’t need a putter on my first hole. Alan was honored in 2011 for organizing one of the best scratch leagues in Tucson and his achievements bowling by Tucson Tribute and Honor. His dream finally came true winning the Tucson Senior Masters in 2014. Alan just bowled his 26th USBC National tournament and averaged over 190. In 2018, he won the FIG Golf Club Championship to become a 2 sport Champion.
The following are achievements and special events that the author has in his scrap book for bowling and awards from around the house. Even though some of these events may seem insignificant for some, each one was a learning experience to help with situations that occurred later his career. With the injury to his bowling fingers before starting his bowling career, accomplishing a few things showed he never gave up. But to have a resume of this many triumphs shows his dedication to the sport he loved and continued on his path to excellence and able to record his name in the record books. All of his 300 games won’t be listed and some events that are listed, will show how he remained competitive and challenged himself to become better. These events are what helped shape his fun filled career and obviously are the ones that meant the most of his 50 years. Remember that he had no coaching until after he averaged over 190 when he was 28 years old, and then averaged 210 the very next season. Raising your average 20 pins after he was at 190, showed he had the ability to do great things. Even with most of his accomplishments are at the local level, several achievements happened because he was willing to test his skills at even higher levels. He didn’t let his stroker mentality diminish his quest to seek new experiences to become a more complete bowler. There will be several who may have already achieved more, but there are many who wished they could have achieved half of what is listed here. The author believes that the challenges you face will make you better, the fun you have while competing will keep you coming back for more and the memories from your achievements will you focus in future competition.
The coaching in both the physical and mental games is just one reason why, continued success happens to pro athletes and why they continue to seek outside help. Even if you’re not planning to turn pro, seeking help to get more desired results, should help you have more fun with your sport reap the rewards from becoming a better well rounded athlete. This is one of the overlooked factor when wanting to remain competitive to win the league championship. The two hour trip to get qualified assistance could be the best experience during your career. Is getting in the playoffs more often worth a few hours of your time and spending less money than on some of your equipment? It’s not this author’s first rodeo and he knows the value of help as opposed to trying to do it by yourself. Be smart so situations won’t kick you in the ass. It’s not always the best player that will win as the author has been the underdog many times over and came out with the victory. Confidence, some coaching and just happy to be able to compete, can conquer opponents! Another reminder that any opponent should be respected has there is always a chance it is their day. If you trained, have a solid mental game, make smart decisions before, during and after any competition, it could be the day you’ll remember for the rest of your life.
Photos of some of his accomplishments are on this website and are only part of the successes during his career. When someone has been rewarded over 200 awards over a lifetime, no matter how small the event may seem, the events that took some work to reach a positive outcome are the ones that have a lasting treasure for the future. Any successful event gets you closer to your career’s vision and should never be overlooked as meaningless. Any event and the way you handled the situation, can be worth the price of gold and the reason why you become more successful in your career. For those athletes that finally reach their goal, it may not always be about what the goal was, but the way they worked at it, so they can finally say, “I did it.” Everything you did to get there finally paid off. This is what sports is, doing something that many thought you wouldn’t be able to accomplish. It feels good to prove them wrong.
AJBC: The 12 years of bowling in junior leagues showed he had some talent before turning 18. Receiving these awards as a kid is why the author was hooked and fell in love with bowling. That very first season, his team came in second place and he received a specially made patch for perfect attendance. It only got better after that. He won five league championships, beat his coaches three times, bowled the league’s highest game, shot a 600 series, had most improved average, threw a game with all spares and was robbed when he had 3 splits in a row. He won seven City tournament titles with three being City All Events (’67, ’70 and ’71 for three out of five years) and two others are for City Doubles. His highest average in juniors was a 164 and the 600 patch showed he bowled 100 pins over his normal for that week.
ABC and the 1970’s:
Oct. ’73, The author was taking classes at the community college, when he walked into Keglers Lanes and found several bowlers involved in pot games. Mondays at 9:30 A.M. every week. It was a way several seniors to stay competitive. One of the desk personnel called Alan a “fish” as he was donating his dollars at first. Within six months, he was the shark and now winning three out of four weeks.
Mar ’74, City Doubles tournament was one pin away from winning with 1214. ’73-’74, Won a Junior Adult league after throwing a 264 game, 100 pins over his highest junior average.
Apr ’75, He was bowling Color Pins and was drawn for the $724 Double Cross, where he threw the double to collect the pot.
Mar ’76, Took home the hardware in the City tournament with a 1261 in Doubles, his only title in many City tournaments.
May ’78, He helped his team by throwing 630 in the AZ State tournament in the team event, as Choo Choo’s finished in 4th place shooting the second highest scratch score with 3065 for a handicapped 3384, and the team winning $750. Oct ’78, He records his first of over 100 700 series with 715, due to shooting a 276 the final game leaving him a bucket away from a 300.
Apr ’79, Bowling with two friends from High School, he added 656 to help his team sweep both halves of the season winning 75% of all points in the scratch Tucson Bowl Classic league. He also won his other league, an employee league for Village Inn Pancake House throwing his highest average to date with a 185.
Note: The ‘70’s set the pace, as he was learning to deal with some pressure situations and was close to achieving a few great scores. Dealing with money and pot games gave Alan a different perspective for bowling, giving him more confidence even in losing situations. Knees knocking knowing that one strike was worth $724 after throwing a Brooklyn, carried a high hit and was proof, that even bowlers that have a 170 average, can do amazing things. The experience and learning can’t be taken away by any competitor, they are what make athletes stronger.
The 1980’s: Apr ’80, He broke through the 800 barrier in no-tap, an 801 and high series for the week in Golden Pins weekly no-tap tournament.
Nov & Dec ’80, He qualified with 618 finishing with 436 and then backed up qualifying excellence, winning the title shooting 899, throwing 717 for the last three games, in the Sportsman Fund Charity Singles Classic tournament.
Jan ’81, He finished on league tossing 16 strikes of the last 20 shots for 491 and totaled 656 for the night. In Color Pins, he finally threw the first 10 strikes in a game, then missed the head pin leaving the 1-2-4 for a 286 game. May ’81, He averaged 271 no-tap to take home second place money after an 844 qualifying score. He continued to improve this season and now has averaged 190 for his first time. While practicing, he was able to go off the sheet shooting 290 and stringing 14 strikes for a ‘Varipapa’ 300. He tried to win a spot to bowl in the Tucson PBA Open and after eight games, averaged 200 even, missed cashing by 30 pins. Jun ’81, He had the only 800 for the week without a 300 game in the no-tap tournament, throwing 298, 298 and 290 for 886. The very next week in no-tap, shot 290 when it mattered the most, the final game to finally win no-tap and cash in six consecutive weeks. Aug ’81, Took his first bowling lesson from Andy Clark Sr., owner of a pro shop, to help shoot higher consistent scores. Sep ’81, One of his rewards because of his lesson, was during the pot games era. Winning over $100 for four pot games was a huge confidence builder because of the several Hall of Fame bowlers that showed up, but it was even bigger averaging 232 with a 929 set and sweeping all four pots. Nov ’81, His Friday league team was just warming up, shooting a scratch 3249 with having an 1100 games, helping with his 649. Dec ’81, He finished the week shooting the new league high game with 289 and was the first time starting two games with the front eight strikes in the same night.
Feb ’82, Bowling at 9 A.M. in the team event on Sunday for the City tournament with some great bowlers on the squad, he threw the highest series of the squad with 669, and finished with a 252 game. Bowling in just his second City Masters tournament, he qualified for the final spot with 832 and his first ever finals. The double elimination match play finals used two game totals to advance to the next round. He made it to the fourth round and he was bowling Hall of Fame member Dewey Yoho. Dewey started with the first nine to shoot 277 while Alan had the last five for 269. He started the next game with an 8-10 split and the late four bagger wouldn’t be enough. Dewey threw the final five for 236 to total 513 to Alan’s 486. It was the highest match during the finals and the highest losing score. 7th place against the best in the city in just the second time bowling shows he’s up for challenges and capable of holding his own. Mar ’82, One week late as it turned out. His Friday team with Hall of Fame member Al Davis who threw 800 even, finalized the evening with 3380 scratch after a team set the city record for series two days earlier with their 3385. The team had their highest game to finish the night with 1199 and Alan helped with a 247 third game shooting 679. Apr ’82,He was bowling well when he finally won a Pro-Am spot with his 934 in the trio league. The six week average climbed to 216.8. May ’82, With the way the Friday team was bowling, it wasn’t a surprise that they won an entry to the National Team tournament in Las Vegas. Their opening game of 1187 scratch meant they just needed to bowl their average the last two games to be Vegas bound. Alan threw 649 to help secure the trip. On the final week of league, he finished the night with a 268 to throw a 653 to average 211 and his first average over 210! During one weekend, he averaged 235.7 for eight games in the Scratch Doubles tournament with 962 and 924 to cash in 4th and 5th place. His improvement showed in bowling the Pro Sweeper and attempting to win a spot in the Tucson PBA Open. He was 104 over and his first cash in any Pro Sweeper, tied for 14th place. With a 267 for his second game, he was able to win $139 from side pots. A day later, bowling pot games against a Hall of Famer, John Menche, wasn’t as profitable losing $40 after 14 games of bowling. He did average 213 against one of the greatest pot game bowlers in Tucson. What really was profitable was bowling the weekly no-tap tournaments. Starting in the month of May was when he lined his pockets with cash, winning back-to-back twice and one second for five of six weeks being in the top two. Three of the four victories was due to him throwing a 300. Jun ’82, During the summer, there are always more weekly events and scratch a King of the Hill will test your skills against Tucson’s best bowlers. After shooting the high qualifying score with a clean set of 718, he battled to the very final game, only to lose to the King Skip Sansone, and take home second place money. Jul ’82, The very day that history should have been recorded, because Glenn Allison shot his 900, Alan was busy shooting a clean set of 1011 in a doubles league and the first time for back-to-back clean series bowling eight games. Three days later he was asked to sub in a league and threw 773 for his new career high series, bowling with Hall of Famer Ken Hosp. He had a nine bagger the second game throwing 277 after starting the first game with the opening eight strikes. One night during a no-tap tournament, he qualified with the only 800, throwing 28 no-tap strikes in a row after leaving a 7-10 split the opening frame. The 10th frame of the third game repeated the opener with another 7-10. Aug. ’82,Bowling in the Singles Classic which is six games of qualifying before the marathon finals of 16 games, five of the six during qualifying were above 210 and made the cut being 94 over. The grind out of bowling 16 games in the finals was a huge learning experience as it was round robin match play and a late 259 game kept him from the top ten. Nov ’82, He shot 228, 258 and 278 in pot games for 761 and his first ever 900 series no-tap getting tapped seven times.
Jan ’83, An action match of $10, $10 and $20 against a very good bowler, Alan kept the pressure on his opponent by shooting 899 for the two sets and went home with $80 more in his pocket. May ’83, Another respectable showing trying to win a spot to bowl in Tucson’s PBA Tucson Open. He missed cashing by 12 pins, shooting 158 over for an average of 219 and finishing with 190 and 199.
Mar ’84, The night that will show his ability to repeat great shots came in the trio league when he had a 289, leaving a ten pin the second game and started the fourth game with another ten bagger leaving an eight pin. After missing two chances at a 300, Dewey Yoho told him that your day is coming. The Monday night league with 48 teams was the biggest league ever for Tucson and his team claimed a Roll-Off spot by winning the 3rd quarter. Huge game changer. He had side bets every week against Hall of Famer John Menche and had lost $445 to him up to the position round. John walks over to him to say, “Congratulations, now you’ll win enough to be able to pay me.” Apr ’84,When you realize that challenges only make you a better athlete, competing in national events will indicate how ready you are. Alan bowled his first of 26 ABC Nationals and threw 597 in Reno, NV’s singles event to make him want to come back for more. May ’84, Alan came up with a Roll-Off game plan for the Monday night league, which is in the notes that follows. The team was having so much fun in the Roll-Offs, that they had almost no opens for the six games. After game five, Alan’s team finally took over the lead and didn’t look back. Alan led the team with his 689 and three other bowlers on the team were over 600. They won their division by 75 pins because they bonded as a team and worked on improving their game after securing a spot in the Roll-Offs. They went against a very good team for the title and the magic from yesterday disappeared. The big money was winning the division and an extra $300 for the team that won the league. The team won $9700 for the season, so each team member received $1940. After paying $525 in weekly fees, that would make a profit of $1415. Jun ’84, The High Roller tournament is a huge mega buck event as its just match play. After winning their division for the Monday league, Alan’s four team members put up $100 to split the winnings, while he had to put in the rest, $600. Alan in the first round match was even with his opponent until he slid by a 4 pin in the 7th frame. He would lose by five pins with a 185. Dec ’84, One week after his 30th birthday, Alan would bowl pot games after bowling color pins against John Cook and Dewey Yoho, two Hall of Famers and the greatest local bowlers. In his 6th game of 8, perfection happened, at least on the telescore. His first 300 game in competition. A great achievement against great bowlers averaging 238 for his eight games.
Feb ’85, Bowling in Tucson’s most published league sponsored by the newspaper, the Citizen Classic posted the scores every week. In a low scoring week at Copa Bowl, Alan threw the week’s high set with 826 to get his photo in the paper. Apr ’85, During the five months for Nationals, Bowlers Journal host’s a side tournament and he tried his skill at Tulsa, OK. His 1006 for the five games rewarded him with an instant refund for his entry fee, needing a 990. May ’85, he was asked to bowl an international tournament in Nogales, AZ and won the tournament. (The trophy with the miller can.) He had some great help from teammates John Cook and PBA Hall of Famer, Larry Laub.
Jan ’86, Brunswick was hosting a Tournament of Champions for all its weekly no-tap winners. Alan finished third to win $175 just by showing up. Later in the month, he starts the Citizen Classic with a 278 game to claim another high for the week shooting 909. Mar ’86, the minor accomplishments keep coming and during the Citizen Classic at Keglers Lanes, Alan left the almost non makeable 7-10 split on lane 8. It was a lane where pins were ricochet from the back and end up on the pin deck. After he released the ball, he ran towards the bowler’s area and sure enough, the 10 pin bounced out of the back to takeout the 7 pin. Those watching weren’t surprised that it happened, they were surprised he ran the shot out. Bowling pot games there paid off on this lucky deflection as it occurred more often on this lane than other lanes. This conversion will happen one more time in his career. Jun ’86, In his third National, he broke into the top 100 scores in the singles event for the entire tournament shooting 690, eventually ending up tied for 102nd place out of thousands of bowlers. With the great finish, he shot 1861 for all-events to cash in the tournament for $568.47. Alan who was on a high after singles, bowled the Bowlers Journal Doubles event and shot 653 with a 267 opening game. More money, more money and being a scratch tournament means, less pressure as the handicap can’t beat you, you can only beat yourself.
Note: The 80’s so far, were about repeating great shots and having more fun than your opponent. Alan still was learning as his confidence kept growing. The many challenges he faced, shaped his career as he realized that working on his game and getting some help, paid off many times over. After his first lesson in ’81, coming out ahead in pot games happened more than half the time, his ability to shoot more consistent higher scores was now a reality due to throwing more strikes and getting his spares. His ability to handle most situations without working on his mental game during the 80’s, showed his determination to climb to the next level. Alan still had a few lessons to learn when he lost $610 over the season to Menche in the 48 team league and is was a valuable lesson that paid off in the Roll-Offs and for the future. Focus only on what you can do and not what your opponent is doing. When the Roll-Offs for the 48 team league were the eight teams left standing, the four teams each from the two divisions were each bowling on their own pair. It was six game totals with a break after three games. The top team from each division would then come back the next day for the league championship. The lesson he learned from his side bets with John would play a huge part in getting farther and making more money than most realized. Alan’s team had several advantages being the only team on the pair and drawing the high end pair. 1. The shot would be more consistent with only five bowlers instead often bowlers drying the lanes out. 2. Bowling on the end pair meant less scoreboard watching and more focused on how the team was doing. 3. Set a steady pace so the team could keep a better rhythm for higher scores as the pair to the right was empty. 4. More team unity and better for motivating each other. And 5. Alan had a game plan which would decide why his team won the division and be bowling for the title. He told his team to clap, make noise and run some shots out, no matter the outcome of the shot. It was the second game when the clapping and noise was a little louder because his team was bowling well, that other members from the other teams in the same division started walking over to the pair to see what the commotion was all about. Not only was the team bowling great, but now members of the other teams are more focused on how good Alan’s team was doing than focusing on their own team’s effort. After the first three games, Alan’s team was sitting in second place and 25 pins from advancing to the championship. Alan told his team to keep up the good work. The final three games were even louder as the team wanted a shot at winning the league. Alan started to run shot out as they were on the end pair with no bowling to the right of their pair. Their effort in the Roll-Offs won them, an amazing $9000 on top of point money. With two very good teams also in their division, nobody including a few on Alan’s team, expected the team win the division. This event shows that smart planning along with executing that plan can show that teams working together can accomplish even greater achievements. Making the Roll-Offs made this league, a once in a lifetime season. Because of the league having a “top heavy” prize fund, it lasted just one more season.
Because of not getting promoted at work, Alan decided to enlist in the Army and served from Sep ’88 to Sep ’92. The military seemed to have more tournaments than time to bowl every one of them.
Jan ’89, Alan was stationed in Alabama, records his highest triplicate with 204. Mar ’89, He shot the highest set of the season for the league with 690 and this helped him secure the high average for the season with a 202.6. Oct ’89, His two years overseas in Germany got off to a great start as he had success in a few tournaments. Some tournaments with many being no-tap were guaranteeing $1000 for first place, but Alan saw an ad for $2000 guaranteed first place for no-tap when he first got there. He had to ask around to get a ride to bowl the tournament or would have to rent a car to go. Offering 10% of the winnings and paying for gas, it was the lucky third person who said yes. The no-tap in Mainz had a huge showing because of $2K on top. His first three in the books was an 836 on games of 278, 278 and 280. He bowled a second time to shoot 746. The 836 was six pins from the high series for the tournament and won $1000 for second place. The 746 cashed for $45, a $20 profit to pay for gas money. He paid his ride $150 and still cleared $800 in the first Germany tournament. Nov ’89, In a $500 first place no-tap tournament in Wuerzburg, Alan threw a 789 on games of 300, 279 and 210 to take home eighth place money of $300.
Feb ’90, A tournament at his “home” lanes of Pirmasens, had a crazy format. A 3-6-9 no-tap with women getting 8 pin no-tap and men getting 9 pin no-tap. Alan only bowled because he didn’t have to travel to get there. He shot 796 to receive 3rd place after the two women who beat him, both benefited from wide open splits to get rewarded a strike. Alan bowled a scratch four bowler traveling league that bowled eight games every other week. There was only six teams with the two Air Force teams being the top two. Alan’s team finished in third with help from him finishing in second for high individual average with 193, one pin from high average. His team managed to claim high game with 914 when Alan shot 263 at his home lanes and third highest individual game in the league. The Friday scratch league where he shot 654 was enough to win the PZBA Bowler of the Month for February. The post Roll-Offs were all Alan, as he started with 687 for the first three games of the 18, they would bowl over the weekend. He was the only bowler above 193 averaging an amazing 202 on a reverse blocked condition. Mar ’90, The TAACOM held their champions and picked the right partner as they won the Doubles event with 2437 with Alan throwing 1224 for the six games. The very next week was the Army Europe Championships with the top two bowlers for All-Events receiving a trip to Arizona to bowl in the All Army tournament. It would be a trip home paid by the Army. Talk about an incentive to bowl well. That first day being six games of team action, Alan burned the maples with 1340, averaging 223 to help his team take the title with 4608. The first day secured his trip back home as he finished second in All-Events averaging over 202 for the 18 games. The All Army tournament was uneventful as he could only shoot a high game of 214 for the 24 games. There was a ton of oil and a lot of over/under reaction. 25 splits which is one each game, killed any chance of advancing to the All Military tournament. The chance to see friends and his mom made the trip more enjoyable. May ’90, His 193 average was high average in the PZBA. Hannau was the site for the European Masters where the top 16 in All-Events for the 18 games bowled were invited. Alan made the finals qualifying second and with more oil for the final day’s stepladder event, Alan finished in 3rd shooting 176 to 196 winning $600. Sep ’90, The PZBA held its annual Bowler of the year tournament for the 12 bowlers of the month, Alan was the only bowler to average 200 to win the title.
May ’91, For the second straight season, Alan held the highest season’s average with 194 bowling in the scratch trio league and was enough to win the league championship. He made a trip to Frankfurt for the Golden Ball tournament and shot 460 the final two games in the early bird sweeper to miss cashing by a single stick. Jun ’91, The No-Tap Eliminator happened every other week and Alan finally won back-to-back tournaments winning one of every four tournaments while over in Germany. Oct ’91, ABC gave Alan its Award of Merit for the 90-91 season as he shot not one but two 691 for the highest series in the association. On his way back to the states, Alan stopped in Maryland and tried his luck at duck pins. His 3rd game of 106, gave him 231 for the three, showed he differently would need practice if he continued this sport. Dec ’91, The Ft. Ord championships saw him average the only 200 when he shot 2473 for first place in All-Events to win $240. In the Monterey City Tournament, Alan recorded 280 for a Varipapa 300 on a 15 bagger finishing with 714 in the team event.
Note: Alan’s consistence of hitting around the pocket and picking up the majority of spares, is just one reason he not only had success in the service, but also profited from the many tournaments he bowled in. Centers in Germany were very different and many Army post centers including his “home” center of Pirmasens, had a reverse block due to not putting enough oil on the lanes. Bowlers would then dry out the inside of the lanes and the one to the eight board was where the oil was. All adjustments had to be opposite of what you normally expected. No-tap tournaments are not about carrying strikes, they’re about consistency of hitting the pocket. Alan has a two inch binder for his bowling league and tournament highlights, while in the service for just his four years.
The rest of the 1990’s: Jan ’93, This 300 game in practice would show that he was warming up for bigger and better things in the future. While serving in the Air Force reserve and his unit helping with the great flood of St. Louis, Alan was able to visit the International Bowling Museum & Hall of Fame before it moved to Texas. Dec ’93, When things don’t seem to work out the way you’d like, accept it as a learning experience and work to expect better results in the future. A lot bowlers were surprised when Alan left an 8-10 split in the 11th of the third game, and he missed the 10 pin to shoot 799. Everyone asked why he didn’t shoot for the 8 pin to get his 800 series. Alan explains that he didn’t know he needed one pin for his 800 after his 257 opening game. The miss was a rare miss of the 10 pin, and would still be inspiration for the future. The 799 would also set up his ABC record over three years later. Things sometimes happen for a reason and can make you a stronger athlete because of the determination.
Apr ’95, In his fifth ABC national tournament bowling in the brand new stadium in Reno, NV, Alan threw his first all 600 set with a 1864 All-Events.
Jul ’96, Alan missed another opportunity at a ring when he shot a 297 leaving the 3-6-10. This was his first time with the front 11 after five times of opening with a 10 bagger. It was one step closer to a ring. This also created an ABC record for highest sanctioned scores without being rewarded a ring. He held the record for just over three years. It‘s just another event to add motivation to be more successful. Two weeks later, Alan bowled in The Challenge to win the 12 gamer for $500. Alan won the first game high game pot with 257 and backed it up with 266 to just miss another game pot. His 163 fifth game knocked him out of the top spot, but he came back with 236 the next game. After 10 games, he had a 36 pin lead and Alan’s goal was 400 for the final two games. He shot 413 gave him 281 over to average 223 for all 12 games and making this tournament his biggest win so far, as 96 bowlers showed up. Aug ’96, Alan was elected secretary/ treasurer of the Tucson Bowl Masters which became the Traveling Masters. Alan helped create the greatest league ever by promoting the league like no other secretary has ever done. In three seasons, the league doubled in size from 12 to the maximum of 24. Go to Traveling Masters section on this website to learn more. Dec ’96, Bowling in a Green Valley Lanes league, Alan won the Bowler of the Month when he shot 290 for a 794.
Feb ’97, Alan was taking his hot hand in the Traveling Masters league to record a clean set at the lowest scoring center to claim his 8th high on the pair out of 11 weeks in the scratch traveling league. In May, he helped his team win the league championship with his 645.
Jun ’98, While he was bowling ABC nationals in Reno, NV, the Reno Hilton Hotel and Casino had a 100 foot lane you could throw a few shots on. There was very little oil on the lane, but bowling four shots on the world’s longest bowling lane was more about doing something unique while also having fun.
Feb 15 ’99, The Traveling Masters league Alan is secretary of, is now available for the whole world to see on the world wide web. Alan uploaded 15 pages including statistics and newsletter as well as a mental game article he wrote. May 3 ’99, The website for the Traveling Masters won the All-Star website of the month after only being online for around ten weeks. WOW!! Who says promoting your league won’t get you noticed? Winning the award showed that all the work Alan did for the league was being noticed by others outside the league. Sep ’99, As it would turn out, Alan shoots a 265 and a Varipapa 300 to show that bigger and better things were just around the corner. Nov 5 ’99, Six weeks later in another league, Alan was finally able to see some of his work come to light as he threw his first sanctioned 300 of 12 and shot 738 for the three games.
NOTE:The finish of the millennium was just the start of some great things. As you just read, there are many memorable moments before Alan turned 45 for the start of 2K. The computer scare were headlines while he shot his first 300 in league, but buckle up as the ride keeps getting better and you don’t want to be thrown off yet.
The 2K’s will show that the mental game is a must or your game is a bust. May ’00, The 1999 to 2000 season showed he had stepped up and ready for more. He finished for the first time in Tucson’s top 20 averages with a 219 average and tied for 14th. Less than six months later after his first 300 in league, Alan throws his second sanctioned 300 in a summer league at a different center.
May ’01, The first season the Traveling Masters voted on an All-Star team, Alan finished fourth in votes and his third being on the All-Star team out of five seasons. Jun ’01, Sometimes those side tournaments for ABC nationals can be profitable and this trip to Reno, NV was no exception. Alan bowled in the 40 Frame game tournament and the 40th frame for Bingo, Bango, Bongo he finished with, gave him the Big Whammy and the final six strikes for a cash on the spot payout of $250. It was his biggest payday hitting the Big Whammy of the four that he will hit. After his slow start in team event shooting 466, he took a lesson from Carol Norman on Lane 81 at the bowling stadium. The prize money he won from cashing in the tournament and from bracket cashing easily paid for the lesson when he shot 596 and 599 for doubles and singles. Just averaging 199 for those six games gave Alan a $300 profit in bracket winnings. Who said coaches were underrated? Sep ’91, The 299 game shows that that lesson in nationals was a huge help in getting his game back on track as he closed out league with a 557 with a Varipapa 300 and throwing a 15 bagger.
Mar ’02, Alan qualified 3rd in the TBA Masters shooting 929 for the four games. This would make the 6th time that he qualified for the double elimination finals of the 16 he has bowled in, but it is the highest he has qualified with. Apr ’02, Alan wanted to challenge himself by bowling in his first PBA regional tournament. Well he didn’t burn the place down with a high of 185 for his first five games. He settled down and averaged 199 for his final five games. This shows that any challenge will have lessons to learn from if you keep your head in the game. May ’02, The 2001 to 2002 season was the first season, Alan averaged over 220 in any league, and for the second time in three years made the top 20 average list for his 222 and tied for 15th. Jun ’02, The trip to bowl nationals in Montana was one of the most memorable of them all. His mom was also making the trip to see the USA and he showed some of his skills bowling a 653 in singles for a 1754 All-Events total. Just before he left to go to Yellowstone National Park, he recorded four aces in the Bowler’s Journal tournament, an 1111 for five games for an instant on the spot refund. Nationals isn’t always about bowling, it was the adventure to see the country and seeing Mt. Rushmore and relatives at Yellowstone made the trip more enjoyable. Nov ’02, Throwing 18 of 20 strikes usually shows you’re repeating great shots, but his 751 with a 278 game showed that Alan had the hot hand in the Traveling Masters league with back-to-back 750 or better series and won the bowler of the month in the league.
Feb ’03, This year was one of the biggest in Alan’s career. Throwing a 279 the second game after finishing with the last six, he carried 22 of 24 strikes to give a wakeup call for what will happen. Mar ’03, Can you believe that mental game coach who was helping the University of Arizona was willing to help a bowler? Beth Haggerty told me that helping me was also going to be a learning experience for her. With the mental game slightly different for several sports, bowling and golf are more hand-eye coordination and being able to repeat shots under self-induced pressure and also have no defense. I can’t quite remember how I found out about her, either from the local paper or through the U of A. I just knew my game could be better with a few ideas for my mental game. The first session of six was more about my goals and how to work to make them a reality. Visualizing each shot before you execute was also a huge difference. These two ideas would help me in almost every situation. The second session was about keeping a log book and grading each shot on my metal focus to show that each shot you take has no relationship to any other shot. As you’ll see, the log book is one of the reasons Alan has accomplished many goals. Because of his injury to his bowling hand at five years old, he had to develop a strong mental game to achieve some great results. (It’s just that most of my highlights happened after he was 40 years old. Who said you can’t get better with age?) Apr ’03, A week after the second session of seeing Beth, Alan was able to grab one of his career goals by finally shooting his first sanctioned 800. He threw a stair step 268, 269 and 270 and finishing it was due to getting some help. This would actually be the only 800 for the first three games of his entire career, but he has over 30 770 or better series and several 800’s for the last three games of sanctioned competition. May ’03, This would be the first nationals of him bowling with Colin and by far one of the most profitable. Knoxville, TN was the 100th ABC national tournament and Alan shooting 672 in team event would create $960 in bracket winnings spending only $200. The team had an 1105 game to get a key chain from ABC. He would finish up with an 1857 all-events. Jul ’03, One of the great bowling coaches was coming to Tucson, John Jowdy would hold a clinic and his main comment, keep follow through soft was more about not forcing the ball to make things happen. Clinics are good except that you may not get enough one-on-one instructions to make a huge difference. Things in sports sometimes happen at the right time for a reason, even though you may not be thinking it was the right time. Oct ’03, After a mental and physical lesson earlier this year, it didn’t surprise many when Alan recorded a TBA record on a sport pattern with his 290 he shot to open the evening. This was the first sport league in Tucson and Alan after a bucket to start, threw the next 12 strikes for a Varipapa 300.
Mar ’04, The 300 game was part of the longest string he has ever thrown, a 20 bagger. Jul ’04, The Challenge tournament was one of the few on a sport pattern and Alan finished in third place out of 64 bowlers averaging 196 for the eight games of qualifying. He shot 222 to lose by two sticks and a shot of winning.
Apr ’05, Alan threw another 300 with the first 13 strikes and was a 10 pin from winning the $1158 Bowling for Bucks, but still won $58 for getting 12 of the 13 needed to win the full amount. Jun ’05, The Challenge was running a side tournament at the AZ State tournament. There were trios, doubles and singles action. Alan who was cashing in every event, decided to bowl the final squad as a single entry. He shot a 744 to win singles by 14 pins and cashed for the top prize instead of 4th place which was a difference of $200. Dec ’05, The New Year’s Eve No-tap was always fun but to win shooting 1164 made it more enjoyable and the only bowler to shoot above 1100 for the four games.
Jan ’06, While working away from home, Alan subbed in a league shooting 747 while throwing a 17 bagger and winning a case of Pepsi. May ’06, Nationals in Corpus Christi, TX was Alan’s second trip there and recorded his highest set for nationals rolling 693 in singles and giving him a 1834 All-events total. He bowled in the Senior Storm tournament where he won a Storm bowling ball.
Oct ’07, Alan went to Dallas for a Suzie Meneshaw clinic that had the great Norm Duke and bowling’s mental coach, Dean Hinitz there to give better insight into the game. Some of Norm’s ideas, he still uses today and his DVD is a must see. After the two day clinic, he visited the Int. Bowling Museum and Hall of Fame. He believed the one in St. Louis actually had better displays, but both locations were worth stopping for.
Jan ’08, On New Year’s day in the Challenge 12 game tournament, Alan shot a 300 in the seventh game.
Oct ’08, Moving to Las Vegas for work until the end of 2009, meant Alan had to find a league to bowl in. At South Point, he finished one week with 269 for a 762 set. Dec ’08, He bowled in a league with a friend that lived in Tucson years ago and they won the first half of the Monday night league at Suncoast. Jan ’09, The PBA was celebrating 50 years and Alan bowled 669 in the Pro-Am and collected a few signatures from some of the top 50 bowlers including Norm Duke. May ’09, They would earn a spot for the Coast-to-coast tournament by winning the Monday night league. Later in the month, Alan would shoot 289 in the NV State tournament in Mesquite. Jun ’09, The team got off to a slow start and missed the finals by 23 pins. But getting $120 per bowler was a nice bonus. South Point had a summer league with the nationals’ condition. Alan would shoot 802 for the four games to win an entry into the Southern Nevada Masters tournament. Oct ’09, Once again Alan is able to take advantage being a straight up the board player to take that free entry to earn $120 by finishing in 18th place.
NOTE: The 2000’s had some of his greatest accomplishments and this is after he turned 45 years old. Las Vegas was a great place to work because of the bowling, golf and concerts. The experience and knowledge from the game of bowling shows that he was never backing down from challenges that would help his game. “It is what you know that brings home championships.” The next 10 years will just a few highlights as you can’t expect someone over 55 to keep rewriting the record books.
The 2010’s: Mar ’11, Tucson Tribute and Honor felt that Alan’s job as secretary of the Vantage Miller Lite Traveling Masters made a statement and honored him. Nov ’11, Was another 300 game.
Mar ’12, Norm Duke and Wes Malot visited Tucson as the Next Level clinic was at Davis Monthan Air Base. Storm had a demo day, and Alan ‘test driving’ the Storm Hy Road threw the first 16 strikes with it and added 10 more
consecutive strikes for 26 of 27 being strikes. As it turns out, he won a bowling ball so he wanted the Hy Road. You’ll see why winning that ball paid off later. May ’12, This is the second time Alan has won back-to-back leagues, only this time there many more teams bowling.
Aug ’14, Alan decided to bowl a summer doubles league and with not missing one week of the 12, had the league’s highest average with his 232.2 including a 1042 set. Nov ’14, Alan’s career defining moment finally happened after a couple of incidents during the past two Tucson Metro’s Senior Masters. He went out averaged 244 for all 18 games to claim the title and the trophy with the huge eagle on top. The last three games were started with a 300 for a total of 803.
Apr ’15, Starting with a 202, Alan then went 280 and 300 for 782 with his longest string of 22 to close out the evening. May ’15, A somewhat short trip to El Paso, TX for nationals, had him finish in 37th place for the Super Senior Mulligan with a 675. The practice lanes at Cactus Bowl duplicated the shot and the reason for finishing this high.
Jun ’17, A no-tap summer league is great to keep you in shape till winter leagues start, because all you should try to do is hit the pocket. Well hitting the pocket, Alan had an actual 300 and very few knew it was all strikes and not a single tap. He was able to carry 23 straight for his career longest string of strikes.
Dec ’18, With a lead for the Men’s Club golf championship, Alan knew to keep his head in the game because of the wind and being a little chilly. Only one played gained on him, but it wasn’t enough as Alan now became a champion in two different sports.
Mar ’19, Alan decided it was time to share with others his knowledge, since he has several articles he has written on the mental game. To make The Path to Excellence more sellable, a rewrite for sports in general started. Apr ’19, He went to Las Vegas to bowl the Bowlers Journal tournament as the BJ has the doubles pattern and is kind of practice for nationals. He started with 257 due to being where practice happened, but crossing with others who were rev dominate made the last two games an adjustment fest and missed cashing. Aug ’19, The Path to Excellence is now being published and should be ready for sales by around September 2020. In his Saturday league that just changed centers as Golden Pina Lanes is now closed, Alan opens the league with his first ever 700, a 713.
Apr ’20, Website for book is online. Sep ’20, Alan received the only printed copy and due to back cover issues, will be redone before available for purchase. The Phantom Radio show invited me and on 9/23/20, the show is now online. And now is traveling to Ft. Huachuca to bowl a challenge league at 65 years of age to test his skills, thanks to Richard and Mike.
Photos will be added
Pg. 4: 9/24/20