TUCSON, AZ- Des Moines United and Arizona met up in the consolation bracket on the second day of D1 Playoffs in Tucson because they couldn’t control their penalties the day before. Des Moines seemed to have recovered a bit more from their setback, possibly returning after shaking off their playoff debut jitters, and Arizona dug a hole early on with 9 jammer penalties in the first half.
Their defense seemed on in the first half however, keeping United from running away from the game, and AZRD finally seemed to take charge with scoring late in the second half. With Des Moines United’s cooler and calmer game, they kept all 14 skaters on the bench for 60 minutes this time, and finished with the win, 209-140.
For the first jam of the second day, Arizona sent Luz Chaos on the track, their highest point scorer from yesterday with 71 of their 171 total points. She was able to pick up the first lead and 2 points for AZRD, but a late call off allowed Lolo Gunz to pick up 2 points as well. Je NE Sais Quoi and R2DEATH2 escaped at nearly the same time following that, forcing Je NE Sais Quoi to call it off right away.
United got their first power jam of many in jam 3, as Carbomb-Ya picked up the first of many cuts. EnerGEEzer Bunny was already around for her first 5 points by the time Cabomb-Ya sat, and put up just one more grand slam while Cannibelle Corpose and HFace Kila locked down Arizona’s defense.
Des Moines continued to pick up points over the next few jams, even while Arizona picked up a second lead call. With 8 minutes gone, Arizona gave up another power jam, this time R2DEATH2 took a seat, and Lolo lined up for a power start, earning another 10 power jam points for United. Another power jam followed that, but AZRD did a good job killing the penalty and keeping Je NE Sais Quoi to just 5 points, bringing the score to 36-6.
Luz Chaos picked up only the third lead call for Arizona and sped around quickly for four points and R2DEATH2 followed up with 3 more points. AZRD held a three jammer rotation thus far, but then put Deja Deja Vu on the line next, but she sat with the 4th jammer penalty of the game. The jam went a full 2 minutes however, as Je NE Sais Quoi gave Arizona their own power jam, but Des Moines remained on top with a 13-5 jam, bringing the total to 49-22 a quarter way through the game.
Arizona held strong, quick-recycling defense when they had all four on the floor, forcing United jammers to push and work for their passes. Bunny was held to just 5 points on a power jam while HFace went 1 on 1 with her backwards, ultimately forcing a star pass. Possibly because of this, they too mixed up their 3-jammer rotation by entering Vyolent GriMm. She was able to put up 9 more points with the help of a power jam, and her blocker’s swarming offense. Lolli Pop Ya was often the pivot seen sweeping AZRD blockers off their feet.
Arizona saw a bit of headway late in the half when the teams traded power jams, and R2Death2 returned from the box to add 15 points to their total. That progress was nearly erased however, as she sat with her second cut, allowing Je Ne Sais Quoi to add 13 for Des Moines. She seemed to constantly be on the track during these jammer penalties, and in the last jam of the half, she went on to score 30 points while R2DEATH2 came and went to the box 2 more times.
At the break Des Moines United held the lead 123-70, with their lead cushioned by power jam points. The game would have likely been neck and neck otherwise, but Arizona committed 14 jammer penalties and 63 total the day before, it seemed to follow them into this game as well. United typically carries the penalty curse as well, but was a bit more well-behaved today.
The second half started slow for Arizona, as they could only score 3 points over 12 jams. United returned to their 3-jammers again, while Arizona threw Rammz and Loco Lena into the rotation. Lolli Pop Ya entered the rotation later on, when Lolo Gunz received a power jam, but immediately called it, seemingly to set it up for Lolli. United has many skaters in their roster who have jammer on their resume, so they are able to put almost anyone in the star if necessary.
It was 189-77 when Luz Chaos finally ended United’s run speeding through the pack for lead and four points before most people could blink. As their top scorer, she put up most of her points in the last quarter of the game, breaking through United walls like a game of Red Rover, and using her infamous transition jump to score a total of 67.
Arizona picked up 13 of the last 15 jams, staging a valiant comeback, but it was too little too late for the locals, as Des Moines United’s first half lead kept them from trouble when they only scored 19 points in the last 15 minute of the game. Arizona blockers seemed rejuniviated during this time, as stalwart blockers Choke ya latte, Ginger Reeking Havoc and Loco Lena barely budged with their braced, rotating defense.
With the 208-140 win, Des Moines will advance to take on #7 Terminal City (#27) at 4pm (PDT) later today. Arizona will get an early game, aiming for 9th place against the winner of Game 8.
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