Arizona Roller Derby (#9) vs. Dallas Derby Devils (#10)
Both teams were looking to avenge a loss in their final game at the 2017 International WFTDA Division 1 Playoffs Dallas. Arizona Roller Derby’s Tent City Terrors of Phoenix, Arizona, U.S. (Seed #9, WFTDA #27) lost their first game of the tournament to Philly Roller Derby of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, US. (Seed #8, WFTDA #25) Meanwhile, the Dallas Derby Devils’ Army of Darkness had gone 1-1, having upset the seventh seeded Santa Cruz Derby Girls from Santa Cruz, California, U.S. on Friday afternoon before losing to the Texas Rollergirls of Austin, Texas, U.S. later that night. Despite both teams coming into the game with a lot of motivation to win,
Dallas, the tournament hosts, pulled off the upset and skated away with a 183-153 win on their home turf.
Retiring Dallas skater, The Little Murdermaid, said of the experience, “We busted a lot of brackets this weekend.”
The game initially looked like it was Arizona’s to win with the jammer phenom from Phoenix, Luz Chaos, starting out with a 9-0 jam that was quickly followed by successful jams for Tuck Fent City and WestCoast MaFia. With six minutes gone, however, Dallas blockers managed to shut down Quiet Assassin during her first time with the jammer star. Arizona then found themselves with a queue of blockers waiting for the penalty box and Bayleigh Wheat capitalized on that light pack, taking the lead with a 25-point jam and delivering a lead change, 29-19.
The Little Murdermaid, Gillotine Grace, and Juice Box drew two penalties on Luz Chaos — a forearm and a track cut in the same jam
— and Dallas’ four jammer rotation of Miley Virus, Jett, Bayleigh Wheat and Anita Riot was able to take advantage of this opportunity, expanding the lead for the Texans to 62-27 with just under 15 minutes gone. As both teams adapted to their opponent’s style of play, Jett’s quick changes from dancing footwork to powering through blockers seemed most effective in putting points on the board for Dallas.
But Arizona stayed in the game, finishing the first period with a great 9-0 jam by WestCoast MaFia when Dallas found themselves with only two blockers — Juice Box and Gillotine Grace — on the track, bringing the score to 94-67 for the Texans at halftime.
The Little Murdermaid explained, “We took it one jam at a time. One win at a time.”
Arizona maintained the momentum from the end of the first period, coming out of halftime with a lot of tenacity. With Tuck Fent City out of the jammer rotation, Choke ya latte, a surprise jammer for Arizona, stepped in and bolstered the team by scoring 26 points total in the second half. Luz Chaos, known for her apex jumps and quick, leaping footwork, adjusted her style to powering through Dallas walls while Arizona blockers, Jess West and Colette Razorcat, worked to shut down Jett, Dallas’ most successful jammer from the first half.
With 7 minutes to go in the game, Dallas led 149-105 and Arizona started focusing on utilizing the spare time remaining, taking advantage of timeouts to stop the period clock between jams. Dallas responded by running long jams when they earned lead to burn the time. With two minutes left on the period clock, Arizona was behind by 30 points and looked to be making a comeback, but Dallas kept their cool. The final jam began with 1:39 left on the period clock, Luz Chaos on the line for Arizona, and Miley Virus jamming for Dallas. Luz quickly picked up lead and started scoring points, but Miley Virus got out of the pack soon after for Dallas and started putting points on the board of her own. Luz Chaos called the jam with 23 seconds left on the period clock, but Arizona had no more timeouts to use. The clock ticked down as Dallas celebrated their win with retiring skaters, Great Wall of Gina, Nix Victim, the Little Murdermaid, and Mona Bruis’r cheering for successful careers capped off on their home turf.
“This was the best way to go out,” beamed The Little Murdermaid. “I’m super proud to say I played for Dallas.”
Dallas Derby Devils (Seed #10, WFTDA #34) 183
Arizona Roller Derby (Seed #9, WFTDA #27) 153