By Jim Henry
Globe Sports Editor
David Dalton made a slight adjustment on the approach, and the move proved to be nothing short of perfect.
Dalton, 65, rolled a 300 game during the Monday Seniors League at Bowl East. All 12 balls were solidly in the 1-3 pocket.
“I moved over a couple of boards after the first game,” he said. “I had the right speed on the ball. That’s the big thing, speed and control and carrying the 10 pin.”
The 300 was No. 6 for Dalton in his career and first in three years.
“I hadn’t shot one in a while, and it does get a little tougher when you get older,” he said. “I was a little bit nervous this time around.”
In the 10th frame, “I was nervous on just the first ball,” he said. “Once you get the 10th, it seems like the other two come easy. To me, the 10th one is always the hardest to get.”
Dalton carries a 205 average in the Seniors League and a 210 in the Tuesday night league. He’s carried over a 200 average for almost 30 years.
Dalton started bowling when he was 13 years old and living in the San Diego area.
“They had a midnight special until 2 in the morning, and you could bowl as much as you could for a quarter a game,” he said. “That’s the way I got started. The year after I was in the ninth grade, they brought a bowling class into school for ninth graders. I was thinking why couldn’t they have done that sooner.
“After I got older, I got drafted into the military, and I didn’t start league play until after I got out.”
Dalton’s first 300 came in Joplin at Plaza-Bowlarama, and his next two came six months apart when he was bowling in Carthage. The last three 300s have been at Bowl East.
His lone 800 series was an 811 at the Flower Box Lanes on the square in Neosho. He rolled a 287 in the middle game, getting the front 10 strikes before pulling the 11th ball and getting a split.
“It was an eight-lane house and in a travel league,” he said. “It was two men and two women on a team, and I bowled with my brother, his girlfriend and my wife. So my wife and brother got to see my only 800.
“I’m still looking for the second one. Maybe I’ll get it, maybe not. The closest I’ve come was 787 in the Seniors League last year.”