D1M: #2 Texas tramples #10 Rocky Mountain, 391-32

D1M: #2 Texas tramples #10 Rocky Mountain, 391-32 Photo credit Matthew Becker

MONTRÉAL, QC – #10 seed Rocky Mountain’s slim 155-151 win against #7 Kallio in the morning pitted the 5280 Fight Club against a fresh #2 seed Texas team. From opposite ends of the bracket, this meant that the #38 WFTDA ranked RMRG was taking on the #6-ranked Texacutioners, and unfortunately for Rocky, this rankings gap showed in the score.

Holding them scoreless for nearly the entire first half, Texas’s consistent lead status and onslaught of scoring was interrupted in the final minutes of the game when Fiona Grapple finally got Rocky Mountain on the board with three points. With a more successful second half, they were able to add in a few more scoring jams, but Texas took a dominate win, 391-32.

The game started with Texas taking the front defensive spot in a braced 3-wall while Rocky started with a quad formation that lost Fifi Nomenon on the outside line. Fifi fought through the pack for a quick four points with Rocky’s Havoc forcing the call off. Following that however, Texas poured on the points with 18 points by Olivia Shootin’ John and 30 by Freight Train which brought the score to 52-o just five minutes into the game.

Next, Texas missed a lead status call when Nicki Ticki Timebomb sat in the box with a back block, but her teammates ensured a penalty kill by putting Dickie, who had received a star pass, in the box as well. During the regular season, Rocky Mountain passed the star in 14.43% of their jams, and this trend continued while their jammers struggled against the formidable Texas defense. In efforts to spring their jammer, Rocky often got distracted or split up while trying to play offense, but helped stop the bleeding many times with completed star passes.

It wasn’t enough however, as Texas hit the century mark 15 minutes into the game while Rocky Mountain was still at zero points. With two jams under her belt, Freight Train had already tallied 55 points at this point for Texas, and went on to be top scorer with 145. Olivia Shootin’ John ended the game with 108 points, and Texas also utilized Bloody Mary, Fifi Nomenon and Nicki Ticki Timebomb which gave Hauss the Boss the night off.

On the Texas blocker front, Smarty Pants and Peacewar traded off pivot duties and were strong directors in the pack. They were highly successful with a braced triangle which allowed skaters such as Trauma to play offense. Their defense worked well through the chaos of Rocky’s defenders who were often split up while switching between offense and defense.

Photo credit Matthew Becker

Photo credit Matthew Becker

Nicki Ticki Timebomb took lead status in the final jam of the first half, and after a minute and a half, Rocky Mountain’s jammer finally got out of the pack after Sweetie Ramone passed the star to Fiona Grapple. Things nearly went as they had previously, Rocky’s jammer came around the track putting pressure on Texas to call it off, but Nicki tumbled into a low block while trying to call it off, allowing Fiona Grapple to sneak in three points before the clock expired and brought the score to 220-3 at the half.

That small victory carried them into the second half where Havoc picked up Rocky Mountain’s first lead status of the game with the help of a power start and was able to add nine more points. After three more by Wild E Coyote, Rocky Mountain brought their total to 15, but Texas was still adding points in grand slams and sat at 242.

Havoc ended up with two lead statuses in this game and scored 21 points while Wild E Coyote had eight points and one lead status. Sweetie Ramone and Harper Bizarre also took turns jamming, but weren’t able to put a dent in the score. Fiona Grapple and Dickie guest starred as jammers since they took pivot duty in a star pass heavy game.

Photo credit Matthew Becker

Photo credit Matthew Becker

Rocky Mountain struggled most with the powerful jamming of Freight Train, but they still had many strong defensive moments with braced formations and a strong sense of pack definition. They often took hold of speed control and tried to skate away from points, or attempt to cause a no pack situation from the start of the jam. Assaultin’ Pepa always made herself useful- by attacking the opposing wall or hustling to the front to catch a jammer.

Rocky Mountain was able to have a stronger second half, but they still couldn’t extinguish Texas’s extensive jammer rotation while having a shorter, less experienced line-up themselves. Texas showed up strong for their first game of the weekend, and with a 391-32 win, they will advance to play Bay Area on Saturday. This loss puts Rocky Mountain in the consolation bracket with a chance to work towards fifth place.

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