The third game of Saturday’s 2016 International WFTDA Division 2 Playoffs Lansing pitted the #1 seed Charm City Roller Girls of Baltimore, MD USA against the #5 seed Calgary Roller Derby Association of Calgary, AB Canada. Perennial D1 contender Charm may have been the heavy favorite, but Calgary’s scrappy determination and resilience helped them come out ahead after an intense battle with damaging penalties and multiple lead changes.
The two teams were neck-and-neck right from the start. After grabbing a 4-0 lead in the second jam, courtesy of jammer Easy Break Oven, Calgary gave up 4 points to Baltimore’s I.M. Pain, but then fought back to take the lead 8-7. Calgary was able to minimize Charm’s point total with two timely star passes. In jam 5, Charm forced a track cut on Calgary’s jammer Kris Myass, but Baltimore was unlucky in power jams for the remainder of the period and lost their jammer to the box five times before the end of the half.
Charm’s LeBrawn Maimes escaped the pack first in jam 7—but without lead jammer status. Calgary’s Jenni Gunns didn’t realize that Charm hadn’t been awarded lead and stashed the star on her initial pass, creating a 2 minute jam. After a track cut call for LeBrawn Maimes, Calgary led 42-33. Although she started from the box, LeBrawn Maimes was able to escape the pack first on the following jam, but she picked up another track cut and quickly returned to her seat. Hilary Boswell took advantage of the power jam, putting up 8 points of her own to bring Calgary to 50-33. Dottie Deathwish from Charm delivered an apex jump in the following jam, but would pick up a low block penalty, setting up Kris Myass with a power jam of her own and 13 points to show for it. Dottie repeated her apex jump in jam 11 while putting up 13 points, but was again sent to the penalty box, this time for a forearm while trying to get past Calgary’s Knox Hersoxoff, who was providing excellent one-on-one defensive blocking. This brought the score to 76-46 in Calgary’s favor. Calgary held Charm scoreless for the next three jams, but Charm’s LeBrawn Maimes put up 24 points in the 15th jam while Calgary’s jammer Hilary Boswell was sent off the track twice—once for a direction of game play, and once for a track cut. I.M. Pain then took matters into her own hands, racking up 18 unanswered points to close the gap to 98-88. After a 14-14 jam, I.M. Pain brought her team to the half with an 18-4 romp and a lead change in favor of Charm, 120-116.
The second half started with more defensive control from both teams, and jammers were only able to put up a maximum of four points through the first nine jams. Calgary’s sin-e-star and Preacher’s Slaughter were effective in their paired blocking, as were Charm’s Jackie Treehorn and Raven Darkhold. Kris Myass received a skating out of bounds penalty as she called off the 9th jam of the half, and Charm’s LeBrawn Maimes took advantage of the power start, putting up 9 points to tie the score at 135. Easy Break Oven responded with a quick 3 and Dottie Deathwish answered with 10 for Charm. Calgary then took a timeout and started at the pivot line. The jam start strategy worked for them, as Kris Myass sailed through for lead jammer status and put up 14 points while her teammate Kiki Tiki Bang Bang held Charm’s Dottie Deathwish with outstanding solo blocking, thus grabbing the lead again for Calgary, 152-145.
The next five jams were low-scoring, resulting in just a two-point lead for Calgary, which they quickly lost when LeBrawn Maimes put up a 4-2 jam in Charm’s favor, tying the game at 170 points.
Calgary would grab the lead for good with a 31-point jam by Easy Break Oven, who took advantage of two separate forearm calls on I.M. Pain and a full penalty box for Charm that left only Feral Kat on the track. Charm’s Dottie Deathwish put up a 9-3 jam in the 23rd jam to bring the score to 212-179. Calgary called a time out with 1:06 remaining in the game, which gave I.M. Pain some rest, but Calgary’s Hilary Boswell earned lead and patiently rode out the period clock, even after I.M. Pain sent her off the track in turn 2. The 12-4 jam point tally was not enough to bring Charm back, and Calgary earned their second upset of the tournament with a final score of 216-191.
Calgary will battle for first place on Sunday at 6 p.m. EST with the winner of Game 12—either Wasatch Roller Derby (seed #3) or Charlottesville Derby Dames (seed #7). Charm will compete against the loser from that game for third place on Sunday at 4:00 p.m. EST.
Charm City Roller Girls (#1) 191
Calgary Roller Derby (#5) 216