2016

2016 WFTDA Rankings Review

2016 WFTDA Rankings Review Photo credit: Danforth Johnson.

2016 was another exciting year in WFTDA roller derby. It had rising stars, tough matchups, and a strong challenge at the top to take home the Hydra. Gotham tried to prove that a small hiccup in their record was nothing to worry about, but Rose City followed through with a repeat Championships victory in front of their home crowd.

Division 2 did not disappoint either with numerous underdogs keeping any of the top three seeded teams from making it out of their respective D2 playoffs alive. Blue Ridge came back from the outer realm to be the first D2 team to make it all the way to Championships for the second time and Calgary pushed hard in their first year qualifying for WFTDA tournaments.

With WFTDAs’ recent 2017 Playoff announcements, this year only the top 52 leagues will qualify for postseason tournaments, so the competition will be even tighter to make it to the top. Here’s a roundup of rankings highlights from last year, and possible teams to look out for in 2017.

2016 Concluded

2016 Concluded Photo credit: Deadwards

If you haven’t been over to our Facebook page, we’ve uploaded submissions from numerous photographers for three different categories depicting 2016. We received some great shots from photographers we hadn’t seen before and from places all over the world! Below we have put all three albums in one place and then listed each of the photographers who submitted and where you can find their work.

2016: Year in Pictures

2016: Year in Pictures Photo credit: Deadwards

As 2016 draws to a close, it’s time to reflect on how the last 12 months in Roller Derby went. By the time we hit December there have been so many tournaments, games, traveling, and general life things keeping us busy, it’s hard to remember what happened as far back as January. After what’s felt like a very, very long year, we thought the best way to re-live it is to sit back and look at some amazing images.

There are tons of great photographers around the world documenting our sport and ensuring that some of the most exciting games and history-making moments are being immortalized. That way when we’re in our old age, we can reunite with our teammates, A League of Their Own style, and look back and remember the time that Rose City beat Gotham on their home turf or Europe held their first Division 1 tournament.

2016 D1 WFTDA Champs: #2 Victoria wins the bronze over #5 London, 198-108

2016 D1 WFTDA Champs: #2 Victoria wins the bronze over #5 London, 198-108 Photo credit Quick'N'Derby

PORTLAND, OR – Victorian Roller Derby League and London Rollergirls have a shared championship history that goes back to 2014 in Nashville, TN, where London won 173-142. That game marked the first time two international teams faced off at a WFTDA Championship. Victoria and London also met during the 2015 WFTDA Championships, where they played for 3rd place, making today’s match up the second time that these two teams have competed for the bronze.

Last season, Victoria was ranked #4 in the WFTDA and London was ranked at #3. VRDL won that game, 122-99, claiming 3rd place at Champs. Victoria experienced some penalty trouble early on in that game and garnered 7 jammer penalties by game end, earning a total of 26 penalties overall. Despite this, VRDL’s lead jammer status sat at 51.4% to London’s 48.6%.

Since these teams first played each other at champs in 2014, their rankings have changed. And this is the first time that VRDL enters this match up with a higher ranking, #2 in the WFTDA, than London, who is currently ranked #5.

Both teams have similar styles of play, defined by strong bracing powerquads and tripods that are able to rotate quickly to catch opposing jammers even as they cut from the outside to the inside line, but both teams took a few minutes before they were able to maintain their respective formations despite meddling from opposing blockers. Victoria steadily collected points thanks to earning a majority of the lead calls (66.7%) added to their defense’s ability to hold London’s jammer apart from their pivot, often delaying and sometimes successfully preventing the star pass. Victoria ultimately defended their bronze medal, with a win over London of 198-108.

2016 WFTDA D2 Champs: #48 Calgary takes 3rd over #52 Charlottesville, 252-197

2016 WFTDA D2 Champs: #48 Calgary takes 3rd over #52 Charlottesville, 252-197 Photo credit: Quick'N'Derby.

PORTLAND, OR – In the fight for third place in the WFTDA D2 Championships, the game started with Calgary being visibly determined to take the game and go home with a medal. Calgary started strong by taking lead status and adding double digit points accordingly. Charlottesville was keen to reply, and made the Canadians work for their upwards momentum, slowing the pace of scoring.

By the second game half, the differential was starting to narrow, but not rapidly enough for Charlottesville to mount an effective comeback. Calgary wasn’t prepared to accept that narrowing and took advantage of the temporarily reduced roster after two injuries for Charlottesville to push back up and clinch the game by refusing to give up. The final score of 252-197 gave Calgary the game and the third place position for D2.