2017 WFTDA D1 Champs: #1 Victoria grounds #5 Denver, 287-65

2017 WFTDA D1 Champs: #1 Victoria grounds #5 Denver, 287-65 Photo credit: Derby With Recess. facebook.com/DerbyWithRecess

PHILADELPHIA, PA – Both #1-ranked Victorian Roller Derby League and #5 Denver Roller Derby won their games yesterday to get here, and each proved something in their initial performances. Against Montréal, Victoria showed what a machine they could be defensively, but also that they can be penalty prone. Denver justified their round one bye after taking #4 Angel City out 196-166, but also that Scald Eagle’s scoring ability led that force.

VRDL and the Mile High Club hadn’t played each other since the 2015 Big O where Victoria won 150-115. This time around Denver could barely score and Victoria took them out by 222 points, a bigger spread than what they had with #9 Montréal. The Aussies attacked every vulnerability that Denver showed, and killed their Mile Hydra dream with a 287-65 victory.

2017 WFTDA D1 Champs: #4 Angel City brings it home against #18 Rat City, 219-94

2017 WFTDA D1 Champs: #4 Angel City brings it home against #18 Rat City, 219-94 Photo credit: Derby With Recess.

PHILADELPHIA, PA – At the Division 1 Playoff in Seattle, #4 Angel City met #18 Rat City and took an 82 point victory. While the last time Rat City took a win against Angel City, it was in Portland at the 2016 Hometown Throwdown and only by a slim 6 point margin, so the skaters from Seattle knew they had their work ahead of them to beat the odds.

In a game that many people believed was going to be a runaway victory for Angel City, but Rat was able to keep composed for most of the game, finally losing a grasp on their control and losing to the Hollywood Scarlets, 219-94.

2017 WFTDA D1 Champs: #5 Denver levitates past #4 Angel City, 196-165

2017 WFTDA D1 Champs: #5 Denver levitates past #4 Angel City, 196-165 Photo credit: Derby With Recess. facebook.com/DerbyWithRecess

PHILADELPHIA, PA – Friday night’s showdown between Denver and Angel City seemed, at times, to be a clash between quantity and quality. The relatively penalty-averse Mile High Club would slowly and steadily extend its modest lead with dynamic defensive structures and well-timed jammer call-offs, and then the Hollywood Scarlets would explode for multiple passes, riding Denver’s bumper so closely you’d think they were driving under the speed limit in the left lane.

Angel City seemed poised to take control of the game in the second half, twice briefly stealing the lead from Denver and extending that lead to 19 points by picking up lead jammer eight times in a row late in the period. But Scald Eagle, after an unassuming 28-point first half, seemed unstoppable in the clutch, putting up 92 of Denver’s 113 second half points and capping the game by providing 60 points to Denver’s commanding 73-23 run in the last five jams of the game. Denver took a final 196-165 victory, and earned the chance to take on Victorian Roller Derby League Saturday at 6pm for a shot at the championship game.

2017 WFTDA D1 Champs: #8 London takes down #9 Montréal, 231-152

2017 WFTDA D1 Champs: #8 London takes down #9 Montréal, 231-152 Photo credit: Derby With Recess. facebook.com/DerbyWithRecess

PHILADELPHIA, PA – This was the third game for  #9-ranked Montréal this weekend after an exciting opening game against Crime City where the New Skids won by just four points, and then took a tough 253-99 loss against Victoria the same day. #8 London had a similar deficit against Arch Rival on Friday, losing to the St. Louis team 225-82.

Both London and Montréal were the first for their respective countries to make it to WFTDA Playoffs, and it was the New Skids who gave Brawling their first sanctioned game at Anarchy in the UK in 2011. That first meeting was the only time Montréal beat the Europeans, and, with today’s 231-152 win, London has beaten the team six times since then. Today was the 6th in that series, with a final score in favor of London, 231-152.

2017 WFTDA Champs: #2 Rose City clamps down #7 Arch Rival for a win, 237-109

2017 WFTDA Champs: #2 Rose City clamps down #7 Arch Rival for a win, 237-109 Photo credit: Derby With Recess. facebook.com/DerbyWithRecess

PHILADELPHIA, PA – Rose City earned a bye and had plenty to prove as they entered this tournament without the number one ranking, despite being victors last Championships. Arch Rival still continues to benefit from their transfers, with the rest of their team playing up and solidifying behind them, and keen to prove themselves, they were fresh from their victory over London on Friday and hoping to take Rose City on the same steam.

After a game filled with the steely control of Rose City, and few chances for points additions for Arch Rival beyond their initial few jams, Rose City cruise controlled into a win, even with a final quarter fight from Arch Rival.