Storm Match Up Hybrid Bowling Ball Review

The Hybrid is the Best Match Up…

Storm Match Up Hybrid Bowling Ball

First Impressions
Ball reaction bears clear resemblance to the Match Up family but the Hybrid cover offers a touch more smoothness.

Our Testers:
Tamer Elbaga (Lefty)
RPM: 380 rpm
PAP: 5 & 3/8 up
Average Speed: 18 mph (at release)
Axis tilt: low
Axis rotation: medium
Test Equipment: 14 Pounds
Layout: 65 x 5 x 40
Intent: Medium/longer roll with a quicker transition at the breakpoint

Sean Jensen (Righty)
Style: High Rev
RPM: 475 rpm
PAP: 4 3/4; 3/8 up
Average Speed: 19 mph (at release)
Axis tilt: low
Axis rotation: medium
Test Equipment: 14 Pounds
Layout: 45 x 5.5 x 90
Intent: Medium roll with a slow transition at the breakpoint

Bryan Hoffman (Righty)
Style: Higher Tilt Stroker
RPM: 280 rpm
PAP: 4 1/4 & 1/8 down
Average Speed: 18 mph (at release)
Axis tilt: high
Axis rotation: medium
Test Equipment: 15 Pounds

Thanks to Greg Bickta and Perfect Aim Pro Shop for drilling our equipment.
Thanks to Limerick Bowl in Limerick, PA.

Buy the Storm Match Up Hybrid at PerfactAimBowling.com.

“Keep in mind that coverstock accounts for 70% of ball reaction, but the core creates the dynamic shape of the reaction. Your driller will alter the shape to suit your game.”

Test Pattern:
THS: 40ft, 26ml
Sport: 42ft, 24 ml, 2.67:1 ratio

Value
9/10
The whole Match Up series offers very good bang for the buck. It’s cheap entry into a very reliable r2s cover with a simple core. I don’t think you can ask for much more except the Show Off outdid everybody from a value perspective.

Specs
The Storm Match Up Hybrid uses the Stinger 2.0 core inside the polished R2S Hybrid Reactive cover stock.
15 pound = RG of 2.57, diff of .035
14 pound = RG of 2.58, diff of .036

Overall
8.5/10

This again is a quite simple formula leading to a very understandable ball reaction. The Match Up Hybrid offers great performance for the money. Perhaps this is too much performance for an entry level bowler but it is what it is. In terms of ball reaction, it’s simple really. Ball is clean as you would expect from this polished hybrid. Core doesn’t have massive torque but between the medium strength of the cover and core, they combine for a readable snappy reaction. On house shot it was easy to throw. House shots narrow the usable part of the lane due to the shape but this ball is obviously a clear step down from the Intense we tested alongside. Easy to get this ball to the spot and it makes a relatively strong move off the friction.
I had zero problem using this ball on this shot. Put up against the pearl version, it’s hard to distinguish a large variation. However watch closely and the pearl is a touch later and snappier. The Hybrid seems to have a touch more blend and smoothness, but just a touch.

Sean can get much deeper with his rev rate. He plays right around the 4th arrow out to 5 or 6. The ball is just about skid/flip for him. Balls with clean but high response to friction added to a higher RG tends to lead to this type of reaction. Lots of energy storage and a kind of explosiveness when hitting the dry boards plus a loping core yields the skid/flip. This is the kind of ball Sean would use when the shot is really broken down and he just wants to throw it fast and away from the headpin, knowing it will snap back. That’s where these low end ball excel. While he could use this ball on fresh as he is, he has no reason to since his bag is full of strong pearl asyms that just have a heavier roll.

Bryan is up next. He quickly found a home going up 8 to about 6. He found it pretty easy to strike and stay in the pocket. With this lower end ball, he straddles the oil/friction line. He can leak it into the friction and get lots of drive through the pins. He can tug it a couple of boards into the oil and the ball still carries. Again, that’s where this lower end ball works well for Bryan’s style staying close to the friction. He also used his marvel pearl just to get a comparison. The more rolly core had a little more drive than the less torquey stinger 2.0 core. The Marvel Pearl didn’t need to see tons of friction to punch harder through the pins.

We also had an opportunity to test it on a burn squad sport pattern. I kept it in OOB finish and found a line about 20 to 8 or so. Due to the flippy and less torquey nature of the Match Up Hybrid, it was actually easier to throw than the Intense on the burn. Length is not an issue and the flippy nature actually gave me some room at the breakpoint where I can be a little more comfortable getting outside 10 on this 42ft pattern.
Bryan was next and he found a good slot 16 to 10. With this ball, he could miss in to 12 and still hold pocket.

In terms of miss room, it depends on the bowler and pattern. For me, I can miss to the friction on the house shot and it comes driving back hard. I can also miss in and the ball sits. Sean has to watch misses in as they may not hold. For Bryan, missing out and he risks not making it back on the house shot. For me on the sport shot, it still shows it’s skid/flippy nature and as such missing in is exaggerated. The ball just flips too hard. But as mentioned, missing out is much better for me. Still I’d rather be using a Marvel Pearl as it has more control at the breakpoint. Bryan’s miss room isn’t huge but more balanced in and out on the sport shot.

Final Thoughts
The Match Up Hybrid offers great performance for the money. It is easily a nice ball for beginners starting to understand ball reaction as well as a nice step-down for those with experience and an arsenal. In the end, if I had to pick one from the Match Up line to recommend, it is the Hybrid. You get the best of both worlds and can make it what you want in that range. If you have higher revs or slower speed, you will likely be able to use this ball on most house shots unless it’s typically higher volume.

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