Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Denver jammers fly high to edge Charm City, 268-141

Denver’s Mile High Roller Dolls and Charm City (Baltimore) Roller Girls kicked off the Women’s Flat Track Derby Association’s Championship Tournament on Friday, Nov. 2, 2012, with the first bout of the weekend. 

Denver posted a 9-3 season heading into the tournament with a loss to Oly in the Western Region Playoff to earn the second seed. Charm’s 8-4 record included losses to East Region rivals Montreal, Philly and 2011 champions, Gotham, and edged London Rollergirls by 24 points to earn the third seed from the East.

Denver jammers Heather Juska (303) and Sandrine Rangeon (24) sprinted to a 24-0 lead after Charm City’s IM Pain (1618) was boxed for a Cut Major, and the Mile High team capitalized by earning lead, gaining points and calling the jam, keeping Pain in the penalty box through the third jam.

The penalty luck looked to swing in Charm’s favor after Julie Adams (19) would be penalized for a Cut Major, as Crowella Devil (101) managed to pick up 14 points before being boxed for a Forearm Major, thanks to Denver’s front three-wall of Suzie Long (831), Ariel Quicley (1982), and Krisana Barrett (28) working hard to counter Charm’s passive offense, to Adams’s 9 points..

Charm’s front wall contained Denver’s Rangeon to 2 points in the 5th jam, utilizing what was called a Ladder, a front-wall that bridged every 9 or 10 feet to allow the blockers to continue blocking the opposing jammer.

Charm and Denver traded 4-point jams, before Charm called a Team Time Out at 21:21, the score 39-18 in favor of Denver.

Adams would earn Lead Jammer quickly in Jam 8, but was boxed on a Cut Major 30 seconds into the jam, while Pain picked up 25 points before Adams would be released from the penalty box, and earned an additional 9 points after Adams’ release, for a 34-8 point swing in Charm’s favor.

An Official Time Out stops the clock at 18:50 in the first half, the score now favoring Charm 47-52 on the back of Pain’s monster jam.

Jam Eight began with Denver players Quicley and Deirdre Sage (5) and Charm players Battery Operated (2AA) and Free Radical (8) in the box, for a two-on-two pack. Charm took the back two-wall defending against Rangeon, as DeVil snuck through to the front to push the No Pack call. DeVil was called for an Illegal Procedure minor at the start of the jam, which was later upgraded to a Major 14 seconds into the jam giving Denver the advantage. Denver’s Rangeon earned 4-5-5-5-5-4 jam before time was called to DeVil’s lone score pass of 4 points, putting Mile High back in the lead, 75-56.

Denver was on a mission to lock the game down before the half, earning Lead Jammer 14 times in 16 jams, with a distinct 78-11 point swing, simply by getting LJ, earning points and calling the jam off.

The scoring drought continued in the second half for Charm, held to 11 points in the first 15 minutes as Mile High stretched their lead to 224-84.

A determined Baltimore team refused to give up and managed to edge point swings in their favor thanks to Denver penalties. Pain scored 24 points in the jam 16 of the second half on a Rangeon penalty. In jam 18 Holden Grudges (63) scored 19 points after Adams was boxed for a Lowblock Major, notching the score at 229-130.

With less than six minutes to go, Charm’s Jam Ref, the Shoveler, makes an unpopular point reporting, awarding Allie B Back (T2) zero points, as the crowd lets him know how they feel with a chorus of boos.

Charm never put up much of a threat against Denver as time wound down, and the mental errors hurt Baltimore. Lining up in the 23rd jam of the second half, Charm’s Battery took an Intentional Fourth Minor, shortening the pack to dangerous proportions after her bench failed to field a blocker, leaving only two defenders against Mile High’s Adams.

With Denver holding a monsterous lead over the team in yellow, Shaina Serelson earned lead, picked up 4-5-5-5 and successfully called the jam after DeVil was boxed for a Cut Major, ending the bout 268-141. The Mile High win pitted Denver against the No. 1 seed from the North Central, Windy City, during the second round bouts on Saturday.