Denver Dismisses Terminal, 379-165

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LOS ANGELES, CA–Another new match-up, Terminal City met Denver first up on the second day of the tournament, and gameplay matched the rest of the days, featuring swarming and clustering walls instead of the usual lateral arrangements, with skaters reversing to engage. Star passes were a feature for Terminal, climbing to 7 in this game. With a higher predicted score differential than the previous day’s Angel City / Terminal game, everyone was watching this game’s outcome also as a potential predictor of the outcome of the following day’s Angel City / Denver match-up. And it finished with Denver taking a comfortable win, 379-165.

Denver placed Bucson once again as their starter jammer, while Terminal’s Kim Janna took a trip to the box on a low block even before finishing her first pass, leaving Buscon with an unreplied 20-0 powerjam first jam in. The second saw Janna in the box, giving Sharpless a power jam start, but Terminal managed to hold her to only 5 points, as Janna rapidly re-emerged and forced a call.

This first half was characterized by Denver taking and holding lead jammer status, giving them effective control of the game for the half. And Terminal’s jammers were visibly penalty plagued as they hit the hefty rear defense of Mile High Blockers, being pulled repeatedly into track cuts, which accounted for 9 of Terminal’s 41 penalties for the game.

And so it was almost the ten minute mark, and Jam 7, before Janna could add in the first points for Terminal, bringing the score to 73-3. But Denver’s ability to deny Terminal scoring didn’t detract from interesting gameplay, as Luludemon then secured Terminal one of their first leads, but was then raced into the back of the pack by Sharpless, at which point it seemed like the need to add in game points won out over the strategic impulse to call the jam, and Luludemon allowed Sharpless to point match her letting the jam run its 2 minute course. Terminal City seemed to have determined for the game to aim for more jammer points, regardless of whether they were being matched by Denver.

Some other highlights included Serelson keeping Schwartemegger in such hefty check that she decided her team’s fortunes might fare better with her at the back of the pack, heading back to block Dezellem. But that work landed her in the box not long after, gifting a power jam to Denver. Also, a Scarlett Bloodbath recycle of Denver jammer Williams backwards, barely misjudging the timing on a spectacular jump-back as Williams re-enters, escaping a cut penalty by micro-seconds. And a spectacular distraction by Ingram as she paused her track re-entry after being hit out just in time to take attention from jammer Janna’s rear approach. Half-time score: 212-69, still firmly in Denver’s hands.

The second period pushed back in the direction of Terminal City, who seemed to have learned plenty about Denver’s game play in the first half, bringing the scoring down to a much closer 167-100. This half featured plenty of jammer recycling with last second jump-backs, and some jammer engagement.

Serelson, soon hovering on 6 penalties, was still a dedicated and effective blocker for this half, with particular personal focus on final yard engagement, including her own moment of chagrin, as Evada Peron snuck in a successful apex jump, clearing all four blocker points as the jam whistles blew.

In the final jam, Bucsek appeared to be under instruction to let the jam roll out, even as Janna kept even with her point additions. But then a track cut call on Bucsek handed Janna a power jam and a full two minutes to end the game on Denver’s win, at 379-165.

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