I checked my email last Friday (Feb 22, 2019) and there was some USBC Marketing on it. Besides the fact of bowling in a league on Friday nights, I felt compelled to open the email because the caption read “Storm Ball Exceeds Your Average Challenge (2 Ways To Win A Storm Ball)”. Who has two thumbs, likes good challenges, and especially loves free stuff? Well I.
They offered two ways to win the Storm Crux Prime, a ball valued at $ 175:
- Enter the “Storm Ball Beat Your Average” challenge on the XBowling website at the cost of a $ 10 entry fee. After entering, you must exceed your average by more than 30 pins in ALL THREE GAMES in the league. If you complete it, you need to validate your scores by entering them into the app and submitting a photo of an official photo of a printed score sheet from your bowling center. Oh, and do it before March 5.
- Enter a drawing by sending a handwritten postcard to XBowling. 3 winners of the contest will be chosen.
I figured that since I was going bowling that night, I would invest the $ 10 in the XBowling app and do my best. The best part is that it was very easy. I put the $ 10 into my XBowling account with a debit card, pretty standard. Then I used the $ 10 I deposited to enter the contest. It was at this point that I discovered that XBowling was much more than the Storm Ball challenge that got me there.
Beyond the special Storm Ball challenge, you may be able to enter other contests, including but not limited to:
- Strike pot: 1 player challenge in which you try to match the strikes on your scorecard with the scorecard that XBowling gives you for the challenge. The challenge has different levels of difficulty based on the bowler’s average, just as one should expect. The entry fee and prize vary from contest to contest. An example is a $ 500 entry reward of $ 1.
- Head 2 Head: Challenge for 2 players where you face another player in a series of 3 games. Very clear. An example is a $ 10 entry fee with a payout of $ 17 for the winner in the showdown. So obviously XBowling is taking home a piece of the cake. They have to pay their bills too, you know.
- Supports: I’m sure they have a variety of bracket competitions, but the one I’ve seen the most is an 8 person bracket challenge. According to the rules of this challenge, “if a tie occurs in the first or second round, both players advance. If there is a tie in the final round for first place, the total prize is divided equally. If there is a tie in the final round for second place, the second place prize is divided evenly. ” With a $ 6 entry fee, there’s a good chance you can walk away with just a few bucks!
So after all my exam of the XBowling app, I participated in the Storm Ball Challenge and the Strike Pot Challenge. If I’m honest, with my 167 GPA, I felt both were equally difficult to get into, but that turned out to be false.
The thing about the Strike Pot Challenge is that if you miss just one of your strikes, you’re done and the pressure is gone. When I play bowling, I always do my best. I’m not one of those “sandbags”, okay? But, I definitely felt more pressure and was laser-focused when I went up to those particular frames that I had to match the XBowling scorecard. The Storm Ball Challenge was a different kind of monster that required consistency from start to finish in three games.
Something must have gotten into me that night because I broke my ass. In Game 1, I hit the first frame, saved the second, and then made five shots in a row. I’ve probably only done it four or five times in my life. At the time, I had more than 30 pins above my bag average for that game, but I opened the eighth frame. The spare in the ninth put me over the top, and two strikes in the 10th were the icing on the cake for a really good 231 (64 above my average). The second game was not so easy.
When I started with two strikes and a spare, I felt pretty good. The open frame in the room kind of scared me. It took me eight frames before opening in Game 1, so hitting my pin build didn’t feel right. I picked up with a spare and a strike. But another devastating open box in the seventh REALLY worried me. From this point on, I knew I had to get a turkey to get the 30+ pins above my average. A spare in the eighth kept me alive, but I still needed that damn devourer. Somehow I managed to get it out of my hat with one strike in the ninth and two more in the final frame. I ended up sneaking off with a 202 (35 pins above my average). Do not misunderstand; that’s a really good game. But, it hardly helped me beat the chance to win a $ 10 bowling ball! The third game in the series let me know that the ball was almost in the bag.
I got into Game 3 with a spare, followed by two strikes, another nine spare, and then three more strikes. In that moment, I knew I had it. My ball was reacting perfectly at the end of the lane, landing right in the pocket. Pins were exploding everywhere. I finished the game with a solid 225 (58 pins above my average).
The grand total came with a zero run of 658, my second highest run ever. In the second week of the season I launched a 667, which let me know that this challenge was not completely out of my reach. When it was all over, he still couldn’t believe he had. I had dropped my bowling ball when I returned and forgot to take my things from the bench in the bowling area! I requested my impression and submitted my scores, still wondering if this challenge was legitimate or not. After the presentation, I received an email the following Tuesday informing me that he had done so.
So, let this story be the one to let you know that this XBowling thing is real. I look forward to getting my new ball and potentially giving it a shot at city and state tournaments. I’ll be sure to post a little update when I get it, and maybe do a little refresher on the ball, how it differs from my old ball, and let you know how I like it. I mean, it’s practically free, so I’m going to love it no matter what!
Last but not least, feel free to use my referral code / link when signing up for your account so you can get some referral dollars. Simply register from this link or use the code KYLER16 when registering.
I hope that some people will see this story and are encouraged to try to win some cash and other prizes with XBowling. I know I’m looking forward to going out again this Friday to do the same. Good luck everyone and good bowling!