2017 B-Team Champs: Day 2

2017 B-Team Champs: Day 2 Photo credit: Phantom Photographics. facebook.com/PP8136

Day 2 of B-Team Champs had some interesting matchups with many close first halves that blew wide open for one team in the second half. Nonetheless, every jam was hard fought for either side, and every game was played intensely until the final whistle. #6 Denver Bruising Altitude pulled off a solid upset against #2 Gotham Wall Street Traitors, and #7 Angel City Rocket Queens continued to show that they came in a bit under-seeded as well.

Catch up on Day 1 and read on to see where the teams fall for placements on Sunday. Re-watch today’s games here.

G7: #3 Tampa Bruise Crew vs #9 Minnesota Nice: 271-97

After Minnesota Nice lost to #8 Arch Rival Saint Lunachix by three points first thing Friday, they kicked off Day 2 with a consolation game against #3 Tampa Bruise Crew. Having lost on their home turf yesterday to #6 Denver Bruising Altitude, Tampa seemed amped up to win their second game. Tampa’s tripod defense clung tightly to jammers and covered well laterally, allowing the fourth blocker to break off to play offense, bridge, or turn to brace. Minnesota also utilized a three-person braced formation, but fell victim to Tampa screens and was crippled by multiple penalties.

The first quarter of the game was messy all around with teams trading power jams and blockers to the box. Tampa took the game lead in the fourth jam after each had scored five points, but as they tried to inch away, Minnesota found opportunities to creep back and keep them at arm’s length. MNRG Nice jammers BiPolarBear and Moose Definitely had good a game against Arch the day before, but all four of their jammers struggled against the stalwart Tampa blockers. Also getting time in the star was Poysenberry Pie after receiving multiple star passes and being forced to keep skating during the many power jams.

Stella Knockout stood out in the Bruise Crew rotation with power and footwork, and today Tampa jammed Doctor Shock more often who danced along the edges of the track. They jammed up to five skaters which kept them fresh and ready to go. By the end of the first half, Tampa took a firm grip on the game and went into halftime with a 122-56 lead.

Tampa continued to pull away in the score while Minnesota kept things fun on the track. MNRG got particularly excited when they put Chocolate Pain out to jam who previously used her strength as a bracing blocker and seemed unstoppable as she powered through the pack, until receiving a track cut. Minnesota was able to get lead status and score in the second half, but Tampa kept putting the pressure on to call the jam, and even snuck in some points on late call offs.

By game’s 271-97 end, #3 Bruise Crew won another chance for themselves today against #7 Angel City Rocket Queens. #9 Minnesota Nice will play at 10 am again on Sunday for a chance to keep their 9th position against #10 Dallas Battalion of Doom.

G8: #10 Dallas Battalion of Doom vs #5 Atlanta Rumble B’s: 260-116

Yesterday both these teams took losses; the Rumble B’s lost to #4 Texas Firing Squad 233-99 and Battalion of Doom to #7 Angel City Rocket Queens 336-56. Atlanta’s Human Missile Crisis kicked off this consolation game by hopping out of the pack on one foot for lead status, a skill that would carry her through as one of their most successful jammers. Dallas earned two points in the second jam but then were held scoreless for the rest of the first ten minutes of the game. After that, the few lead statuses they could get were forced to end early with the Atlanta jammer speeding around to catch them.

Dallas was quick at turning around to play offense after the opposing jammer got out, but Atlanta was more proactive about it from the start. The footwork of the Rumble B blockers was also effective in trapping Dallas jammers, forcing them to stash or pass the star. Battalion of Doom skater Sweeping BOOTY was effective at leaning opposing jammers out of the pack but got pulled away from her blocking duties often with star passes. Collectively, the Dallas jammers were small and nimble but needed some more power to get through the braced Atlanta packs.

After Atlanta led 131-44 at the half, Human Missile Crises kicked off the second half with a 24-point jam. Dallas held better when all blockers were on defense, but their walls sometimes crumbled with Atlanta busting up the middle. Dallas jammers relied more on their agility to move the pack side to side and look for openings along the edges of the track, but Atlanta’s Koko was often there for that vital catch at the top of the pack.

The #5 Atlanta Rumble B’s 260-116 win earned them a second game on the same day against #8 Arch Rival Saint Lunachix. #10 Dallas Battalion of Doom will face #9 Minnesota Nice first thing Sunday for a shot at 9th place.

G9: #1 Rose City Axles of Annihilation vs #4 Texas Firing Squad: 195-107

The Axles of Annihilation beat the Saint Lunachix on Friday 401-77 and met up with the Firing Squad today who beat the #5 Atlanta Rumble B’s 233-99 to get this far. This semifinal was a game of two very different halves. Rose City got the first four points by Beyond Thunderdame, who had nearly impeccable lead status numbers, and as Rose continued to get their jammer out first, Texas was usually close behind keeping the jams low-scoring. After Lil Bratney earned lead and attempted to jump the apex though, she earned a track cut instead, and the pivot-turned jammer Legal Knieval powered through for 22 points for Texas to close the gap to 36-29.

Photo credit: Ken LeBleu

Photo credit: Ken LeBleu

For the rest of the first half, the Firing Squad kept the pressure on and kept inching up the score until they took over the lead 63-59 with 7 minutes left in the period. Grace Lightning had an excellent game jamming against Atlanta on Friday, but Alley Oops and Thugs Bunny followed up with great edge work and consistency today. Rose City left just enough space at the edges for Texas to sneak through and gave up multiple power jams that allowed the Firing Squad to use their effective swarming offense to help their jammer. By halftime, the Axles of Annihilation regained the lead, but only was ahead by 11 points.

Unfortunately for Texas, Alley Oops sat in the box at the end of the half, providing Rose City a power start to begin the second period. AoA seemed to take stock of their weaknesses at the half because they turned it around in the second 30 minutes and took away any momentum Texas had. They locked into the jammers with nearly immovable tripods, forcing Texas to try and stash or pass the star. Mia Palau also proved to be a one-skater wall at times, and Rose City could block well with any number of combinations in the pack.

Points were fewer and far between for Texas in the second half, only scoring 35, and Rose City ultimately won 195-107. The #1 Axles of Annihilation confirmed their spot in the final game Sunday against #6 Denver Bruising Altitude while the #4 Firing Squad will play #2 Gotham Wall Street Traitors for 3rd Place.

G10: #7 Angel City Rocket Queens vs #3 Tampa Bruise Crew: 286-87

The Bruise Crew played first thing today against #9 Minnesota Nice and won 271-97 after their loss to #6 Denver the day before. The Rocket Queens went 1-1 Friday, with their 203-150 loss to #2 Gotham bringing them to the consolation bracket. The Rocket Queens consistently picked up lead status to start the game with the Bruise Crew consistently passing the star to force the call off. Splatypus’s awareness was on point, going from one on one against the Angel City jammer to turning around to grab the star.

Blue Storm’s speed helped her catch packs and duck around to score points for Tampa, and Angel City’s Whiskey Von Sweets gave up a few power jams early on, both of which helped Tampa nearly tie up the score. They kept Angel City scoreless for six jams and got within two points, forcing the Rocket Queens to call a timeout with 15:18 on the clock in the first half. Tampa continued to take advantage of open lanes along the edges of the track and power jam opportunities and went into halftime trailing Angel City 88-56.

Much like the previous game, things turned around in the second half, and Angel City took control. Slow, precise blocking by the Rocket Queens covered the gaps in the pack and allowed their jammers to put up many high scoring jams. As they pushed their lead, their goal became scoring as many points as possible while getting as much time off the clock as they could. Tampa grabbed some momentum late in the game with a few lead statuses, but they could only add 31 points to their first-half total and fell to Angel City 286-87.

#7 Rocket Queens will improve on their seeding either way when they play the #5 Atlanta Rumble B’s Sunday for 5th place while #3 Bruise Crew will fight for 7th in their last game against #8 Arch Rival Saint Lunachix.

G11: #5 Atlanta Rumble B’s vs #8 Arch Rival Saint Lunachix: 144-113

The Rumble B’s returned to the track after beating #10 Dallas Battalion of Doom earlier in the day by 144 points and faced the Saint Lunachix who went 1-1 Friday, winning against #9 Minnesota and losing to #1 Rose City. Psychokid D Freakout opened up the game with precise toe-stop work that led their three-jammer rotation to a 30-9 lead. Arch Rival’s controlled defense seemed to tame Atlanta’s Human Missile Crisis in the first half who was a clear lead point scorer in their previous games. Hermoine Danger helped even things out however as part of their four-jammer lineup.

The Rumble B’s hit a streak of lead statuses that catapulted them into the lead 44-36 with 14 minutes left in the first half. From here the Saint Lunachix trailed the B’s but kept creeping back towards them with power jam opportunities and quick offense that would release their jammer when they didn’t get out first. However, not scoring for ten minutes dug Arch Rival a bit of a hole and at the half they were down 93-56.

The previous games would have led one to think that one team would take charge and bring forth a predictable ending, but this game bucked the trend. Arch Rival dug in and started chipping away at Atlanta’s lead. Their braced three wall at the back of the jam start could fluidly transform into a tripod and then whoever broke off to bridge or play offense would turn around and play safety in case the jammer got out. Pegasass continued to play double duty as pivot, and SheKill Oneal laid some deadly hits to open up holes for their jammer as well. They brought it as close at seven points, but Atlanta continued to score.

With well-matched blockers in the pack between the two teams, it seemed that maybe the shorter jammer rotation for Arch Rival was starting to wear faster and it became a harder fight for lead status. With minutes left in the game, there was even a jam that went the full two minutes without a lead jammer awarded. It looked like Arch Rival was close enough to pull off an upset, but then a 19-point jam by Human Missile Crisis sealed their fate. Arch Rival used their timeout and official review to rest and put Kid out on the line, and as she nearly took the final lead status, a key knockout by Mad Villain at the front of the pack took down Kid while Turbo Royale earned lead status instead. Once the period clock expired, she called the jam and Atlanta won 144-113.

The #5 Rumble B’s will face #7 Angel City Rocket Queens for 5th place Sunday at 2pm while the #8 Saint Lunachix will see #3 Tampa Bruise Crew at noon for 7th place.

G12: #2 Gotham Wall Street Traitors vs #6 Denver Bruising Altitude: 205-100

The Wall Street Traitors earned the last game of the day two days in a row after they beat #7 Angel City Rocket Queens Friday 203-150. Bruising Altitude got to this semifinal by beating the Tampa hosts, 251-105. It started with just one point scored by Kate Sera Sera for Gotham, and then Denver responded with four points. The lead switched back and forth for the first ten minutes, but then a 5-point power jam for Denver tied it up at 20 with 18 minutes left in the first half. However, Bruising Altitude’s ability to cover the whole track with their tripod allowed them to offer consistent offense for their jammer, and they began to break away in the score.

Photo credit: Ken LeBleu

Photo credit: Ken LeBleu

Holding steady at 20 points for over ten minutes, Gotham’s jammers struggled against Denver’s defense and penalties all around didn’t help their cause. Denver did start to give up more power jams as halftime neared, but Gotham couldn’t put in enough work to erase their deficit. While Kate Sera Sera wasn’t picking up points as easily as the previous day, she still was able to move the pack where she wanted them to be and take the open lane that was left. At the break, Denver led 82-39, but with their jammer and two blockers in the box, Gotham was set up for a favorable power start in the next half.

Gotham’s defense got broken up more easily this game, and while their blockers could do good things one on one, Denver jammers were able to gain momentum and get out of the pack while the Traitors tried to reform. The first ten minutes of the second half became a wash in the score as both team’s jammers went back and forth from the box. Cleaning things up a bit, the Bruising Altitude stayed consistent all around and added on points in large sums. The Wall Street traitors just couldn’t get the points they needed and even fielded some new faces on the jam line, but nothing could compete with the large lead Denver had created.

By the time the period clock ran out, the #6 Bruising Altitude had won 205-100 and earned a chance at B-Team Champion against the #1 Axles of Annihilation Sunday at 6pm. #2 Wall Street Traitors will take on the #4 Texas Firing Squad right before that for 3rd place.

Stay informed on Hostile TACOver this weekend by checking in on our B-Team Champs Central page and following us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

 

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