CLEVELAND, OH — Despite #2 seed Kansas City Roller Warriors (#45) getting more overall penalties than #7 St. Chux Derby Chix (#54), their fresh legs gave them advantage over the Pack in Black who opened up the tournament at 10am. The sticky floor seemed to speed up the game at times, making play a bit loose and chaotic, while the grooves seemed to confuse jammers into cutting the track.
Kansas City’s strong 3 wall with one brace held strong throughout the 60 minutes, while St. Chux’s endurance began to suffer, holding them in at least a 40-point deficit throughout the second half, for a KCRW win 218-149.
Jedi Knight-n-Gale lined up for St. Chux first against Mary Lou Wretched, and gave Kansas City the first power jam when she cut the track. After a quick five points, the jam was called and Case Closed lined up for a power start.
The tides turned quickly as a double power jam for St. Chux let Jedi come out of the box, stick a shaky apex jump and continue around for a total of 20 points. She had scored over half her team’s points with 117 in their morning game, and was setting up for another big game just minutes in.
In the 4th jam, A P Leasure (Reptar) also took a turn in the penalty box, but was followed by Conner, making it a full 2-minute jam. The Roller Warrior defense really held on to allow Reptar to score 18 points, giving them the lead, 29-23.
The following three lead jam calls went to SCDC, helping them work their way up to a 1-point lead, which only went back to Kansas City after Case Close added four points in the following jam.
Riding the high of their win from the morning, St. Chux continued to lay on the intensity, which put the lead firmly back in their hands 44-33 with 15 minutes left in the period.
Penalties started to settle in on both sides, but left the Pack in Black more scattered when their jammer sat in the box with a back block, while JessiKaboom worked her way through for a 23-point jam. The recently graduated junior skater brought her team into the lead by 8 points, 56-48, despite letting Conner score four points on a late call off.
St. Chux seemed to favor the back wall, and would re-form there and let their jammer push their way out of the pack while they waited for the return of the opposing jammer. They also stayed passive during power jams while Kansas City tried to goat a blocker or send up an attacker.
SCDC also got a bit distracted at times, giving the jammer a quick pass through the pack, but when they caught the jammer, they were good at not getting pushed forward, and deadly at hitting out and running back. Kansas City’s revolving door of defense often swarmed the jammer, leading to many knockout-runbacks as well.
At the half, Kansas City had a modest lead at 110-85, while also leading in penalties. Jedi Knight-n-Gale’s high success rate at scoring was also becoming a downfall as she began to tire.
The second half was cleaner for Roller Warrior jammers, and they were able to pick up lead jammer status more often as well, which contributed to a steady increase in their lead. The first quarter of the second half saw many hit-it-and-quit jams for them, allowing St. Chux to only score 4 points over 8 jams. While individual SCDC blockers were stalwart positional blockers, KCRW utilized a braced 3-wall to nearly bring the jammer to a standstill.
With a 169-104 lead and 13 minutes left in the half, it seemed that maybe St. Chux was just too worn out for a comeback at this point. Jedi erased that notion with 29 points over two jams. With two of their main jammers out of playoffs after injuries this spring, their rotation just couldn’t pull through for an upset though, and Kansas City powered through to the end with a 69-point win.
The Roller Warriors kept all their skaters on the bench, while Whip L’Ash fouled out on St. Chux for the second time in one day. Kansas City’s points spread throughout four main jammers with Reptar leading at 65 points followed by Case Closed with 53 of their 218 total. Jedi Knight-n-gale however was the main work horse for SCDC, earning 114 of their 149 points.
Kansas City moves onto the semi-final round tomorrow at 8pm EDT against #6 Houston (#53), while St. Chux enters the consolation bracket for a 6pm EDT game.
Head over to our Cleveland Central page for more scores and recaps.