The battle for 5th place brought us the first tournament rematch of the 2016 International WFTDA Division 2 Playoffs Lansing, where Tri-City Roller Derby Tri-City Thunder (seed #9, WFTDA #59) from Kitchener, ON Canada went up against the Bear City Berlin Bombshells (seed #8, WFTDA #56) from Berlin, Germany. Both teams had faced each other Friday morning in Game 1, when Bear City won 235-140 before moving on to a tough loss against the #1 seed Charm City Roller Girls. Meanwhile, Tri-City made the long skate up the consolation bracket to earn their rematch. By the end of the first half it looked like they might win the rematch, but Bear City rallied in the second half to snatch back the lead and win 177-153.
In a reversal from Friday’s matchup, Tri-City controlled the game right from the first whistle.
“We really s*** the bed in that first game. Here, we were calm and played the game we wanted to,” said K. Skelton of Tri-City.
Bear City had some early penalty trouble, racking up 26 trips to the box in the first half to Tri-City’s 17. But even with their penalties leaving just one blocker on the track for the Berliners in jam 14, they managed to keep it a 38-point game at the end of the first period, thanks in large part to Peanut Butter Panic putting up a huge 27-0 jam to close out the half with 54 points to Tri-City’s 92.
“Their recycling was really [good],” said Bear City’s Catherine Beat-her Bonez. “We struggled with that.”
Coming into the second half, both teams traded leads and quick points for the first few jams, but Tri-City met an avalanche of jammer penalties, giving Bear City the momentum to close the gap. In jam 9 of the second period, Tri-City lost the star to the box, and the power jams in Bear City’s favor continued for the next 3 jams in a row. Bear City was able to capitalize and bring the score to 112-118, taking the lead at the end of jam 12.
But Bear City found themselves in a jammer penalty do-si-do when Tri-City’s blocker, Smashin’ Good Time, made a solid hit and a swift runback to draw a cut on Bear City’s Peanut Butter Panic. PBP had just accepted a star pass from Jane Van Pain when Pain returned to the track from the penalty box.
In the second-to-last jam, Bear City’s Mia Missile put up a stunning 23 points to Tri-City’s 8, bringing the score to 174 to 145—a gap too wide for Tri-City to recover, although their top jammer Crazy Squirrel attempted in the final jam by grabbing lead and putting up 8 points to Peanut Butter Panic’s 3. Bear City clinched the win 177-153, earning 5th place in the tournament and moving up three spot from their 8th seeding. Tri-City places 6th, also moving up three spots from their 9th seeding.
Bear City Roller Derby (#8) 177 (4th Place)
Tri-City Roller Derby (#9) 153 (5th Place)