After graduating in elementary school, Alcano didn't proceed to high school due to financial problems. He then opted to play pool for a living.
Alcano's recognitions in the Philippines began with his performances at the 2000 Rising Stars Tournament. By the final, he was highly favored to win the title, yet in the final match (a to 13), Alcano lost to Edgar Acaba by just a rack short, 13-12. Despite having a 12-7 advantage, Alcano missed while only three balls away. Acaba then returned to the table and won the needed 6 racks in a row to win the match and the title.
In 2002, Alcano began to make a name for himself, and began competing in major events in the US. He won five tournaments in the Joss Tour and was awarded Rookie of the Year for 2002 by azbilliards.com.
Coming in as an underdog, Alcano upset German Ralf Souquet in the finals, 17 to 11 at the 2006 WPA Men's World Nine-ball Championship. ESPN commentator Gerry Forsyth said, "the only way to stop Alcano is to put a rattlesnake in his pocket, then ask him for a match" about Alcano's performance. He thus became the second Filipino (excluding 2004 winner Alex Pagulayan, as he represented Canada at that time) to become World Champion in this event after Efren Reyes won the title in 1999. In the November 2006 tournament, Alcano had been on the brink of elimination in group play before taking advantage of a soft break. He won just 1 of 3 group matches and scraped through as the 64th and final seed. Alcano then defeated local favorite Reyes and defending champion Wu Chia-ching in the knockout stages, proceeding to the final. For winning the tournament, Alcano won US$100,000 which is the largest first prize ever won in the world nine-ball championship.
On 25 April 2008, Ronnie Alcano lost his title at the World 8-Ball Championships in Fujairah City, United Arab Emirates. Germany's Ralf Souquet won the $60,000 championship prize, 13-9 final score.
On 26 October 2008, Alcano lost to Mika Immonen in the $250,000 33rd US Open Nine-ball Championship, where 237 billiards players competed in Chesapeake, Virginia. Mika claimed the 13-7 victory against Alcano, who settled for $20,000.
During his early days of competing in the Philippines, Alcano was nicknamed "Calamba" which is a reference to his hometown in the country (see above). But when he started participating in US-based tournaments, some commentators mispronounced his last name as al-kay-no. Thus, the nickname "Volcano" was addressed.
|WPA World Nine-ball Champion
|WPA World Eight-ball Champion