Minnesota RollerGirls (#3) vs. Texas Rollergirls (#2)
The Texas Rollergirls of Austin, Texas, U.S. (Seed #2, WFTDA #6) and the Minnesota RollerGirls of Saint Paul, Minnesota, U.S. (Seed #4, WFTDA #16) met in a Sunday afternoon consolation-round matchup at the 2017 International WFTDA Championships. A focused Texas squad took control early in the game and maintained it throughout on their way to a convincing 280–153 victory.
Texas’ dependable stable of jammers, bolstered by blocking from their formidable walls, nabbed lead jammer status in four of the first five jams of the game. A 29–0 power jam from Freight Train helped Texas roar out to a 48–2 lead with just under eight minutes gone in the first half as Minnesota saw their jammer Switch Please head to the penalty box twice in subsequent jams. Minnesota’s Jacked Pipes picked up a lead jam call but was boxed for a forearm; meanwhile Texas’ Smarty Pants received a star pass and was able to add more points for the Texies. With 20 minutes to go the score was 60–10 in favor of Texas.
Throughout the game, Texas’ Polly Gone pestered the Minnesota blockers with effective offense, breaking up their defensive formations and allowing the Texas jammers to weave through the split blockers. Meanwhile, Texas’ Aja Gair and Peacewar made things very difficult for the Minnesota jammers, often teaming up to sweep them off the track and drag them backwards to reset at the back of the pack.
Minnesota, finding themselves on the wrong side of a 74–12 score halfway through the period, began to mount a rally. Brickyard picked up lead jammer status and a powerjam as Texas’ Alley Oops was called on a penalty. As Brickyard racked up multiple scoring passes, Alley Oops reentered and was felled by a high block, causing the jam to be called for injury. The jam ended with a 17–0 score for Minnesota. Texas then exercised their official review, requesting an expulsion on the Minnesota blocker for the high block. The officials declined to issue the expulsion, explaining that the contact was not judged to be intentional or reckless.
Minnesota strung together a series of lead jammer calls, running jams long to maximize their scoring chances. Though they did put up points, Texas was able to score as well, keeping Minnesota from gaining significant ground. As the first period wore on, Texas continued to extend their lead, getting another big 15–0 jam from Freight Train just before halftime. At the half, the score stood at 145-71.
The second half saw Texas go on an early 21–0 run before Minnesota’s Brickyard was able to take lead and a powerjam over a boxed Alley Oops. A 10-0 for Minnesota brought the score to 170-81 in Texas’ favor with 25 minutes remaining in the game. Over the next 15 minutes Texas continued to incrementally build on their lead, winning the majority of the lead jammer battles and utilizing star passes to keep up with Minnesota’s jammers (who continued to let jams run long) when not lead. Texas pivot Smarty Pants, despite not once starting a jam as a jammer, ended the game as Texas’ third highest-scoring jammer with an impressive 47 points. However, a star pass to Smarty gone awry allowed Minnesota to pick up their biggest score of the second half as Brickyard earned 23 points while Minnesota blockers played a game of keep-away from the Texas star resting on the track. With ten minutes left in the game, the score was Texas 217 to Minnesota’s 126.
As the game clock wound down, Texas continued to control the pace, outscoring Minnesota 48–19 in the final ten minutes and ending with a final score of Texas 280 to Minnesota 153. Freight Train led the scoring for Texas, with 93 points in 10 jams and a phenomenal 90 percent lead jammer rate. Olivia Shootin’ John contributed another 60 points for Texas, taking lead status an outstanding 80 percent of the time. On the opposing side, Brickyard, coming back from injury that kept her out of WFTDA Playoffs in Dallas, led Minnesota’s jamming crew, putting up 80 points with a 57 percent lead jammer rate.
Texas Rollergirls (Seed #2, WFTDA #6) 280
Minnesota RollerGirls (Seed #3, WFTDA #16) 153