East Quarterfinals: 2E Philly Eludes 7E Boston, 229-110

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BURLINGTON, VT — The last quarterfinal of day 1 action at the East Playoffs was a huge upset — for 30 minutes. In what was almost a carbon copy of Boston’s defeat by Charm City at ECDX, the 7th-seeded Massacre held 2 seed Philly for the entire first half, and in fact held a slender 88-85 lead at halftime. But Philly recovered from early-game penalty trouble and rode a 100-point performance from ace jammer V-Diva to eventually skate out 229-110 victors and progress as expected to the semifinals.

Boston took an early 1-0 lead over Philly when Ginger Kid got lead over V-Diva. Lil’ Paine got a second lead call in a row but couldn’t add to the lead. Maya Mangleyou then looked to have made it three from three when she was boxed on a major forearm, but Goldy could only add five as Salome Splatter, Dixie Kicks and Ginger Kid swarmed her and killed the penalty. Goldy was boxed after Maya had completed her first pass; Maya added four to leave the score Boston 7-5 with four minutes gone.

It was 15-7 by the time Goldy came out of the box; Lil’ Paine added another 10 with Goldy stuck behind Shark Week and Vixen Ta Hitcha. V-Diva made it a 4-0 to make it 21-11. Maya picked up lead and two points next time out thanks to Shark Week’s offense before a 3-0 for Lil Paine extened Boston’s lead to 31-11 with nine minutes gone. Philly than ran some offense of their own to let Teflon Donna stick up a 4-0 of her own.

But Boston continued their dominance of lead jam calls and on the scoreboard as they pushed their lead up to 48-15 with successive hit-and-quit jams as Philly kept their box full. Antidote then handed Boston a power jam when she was boxed on an IP major for a false start; Ginger Kid used that power jam to push the Massacre lead to a crowd-stoking 68-15 with most of the first period gone.

Boston was up by a rather stunning 72-15 when a rattled-looking Philly finally started finding their game. Teflon Donna got a power jam against Lil Paine when the Boston jammer picked up a major cut; but she only managed to make it 75-33 as Boston effectively countered Philly’s passive offense. Tight packs and heavy-hitting defense from Dixie Kicks repeatedly knocked Telon out of bounds, forcing her to track back round.

But Lil Paine was boxed on a fourth minor seconds after getting out of the box, letting Antidote skate Philly back into the game as Boston ran into penalty trouble. With six minutes left Boston still led, but by a much more slender 75-58. A 9-0 for V-Diva cut the lead further as Boston finally got back on the track in numbers. A 4-2 for Teflon Donna over Lil Paine brought it back within a single scoring pass for Philly — but Ginger Kid showed some great footwork to toe-stop dance down the inside to reassert a little control over lead jammer status for the Massacre.

Two jams later a quickfire 4-0 sealed with an apex jump for V-Diva tied it up at 79-79 with two minutes left in the period. Seemingly fired up by a dance-off to unofficial Philly anthem “Eye of the Tiger” during an official timeout, Philly came out and took the lead for the first time in the bout with another quick 4-0 in a successive jam for V-Diva, again featuring a huge apex jump. But a 9-2 for Lil’ Paine retook the lead in the last jam of the half as Goldy was again held by Dixie Kicks and Shark Week in the Boston pack; the half ended with Boston up 88-85.

V-Diva restored Philly’s lead with a 4-0 at the start of the second half as the pack speeds hit heights unseen in the first half. Lil’ Paine put up a 4-0 of her own as Teflon Donna got stuck behind Bad Person. V-Diva was lucky to make it a one-point game with a 2-0 after Maya Mangleyou got a very very late lead jam call; a 1-0 for Antidote despite Ginger Kid getting lead tied it up at 92-92. It was V-Diva who again retook the lead for Philly with a 2-0 as pack speeds again increased.

Ginger Vitis then held Maya Mangleyou for long enough to allow Teflon Donna to get lead–but Maya won the jam 4-2 to tie it up after a late call and sublime scoring pass. That put the score at 96-96, but Boston’s charmed game came to an end there. Six lead jammer calls in a row for Philly allowed them to drop 64 unanswered points on light Boston packs, making it a 160-96 game with just about a quarter worth of game left.

Ginger Kid scored 3-0 on V-Diva to end that run, but two jams later, with the scoreboard reading 165-104, penalties again bit Boston. Jammer Ginger Kid was boxed on a major cut, and was swiftly followed by Shark Week. That left only two Massacre skaters on the track against a full Philly complement and V-Diva made it 185-104 before being boxed on a fourth minor. Ginger Kid couldn’t add to the total though when she was boxed on a fourth minor of her own. That left Philly with a commanding 189-104 lead with 9:32 left.

The next jam was jammerless for about 15 seconds before V-Diva was released from the box, and she pushed Philly up to 199-104 as Ginger Kid finally emerged from the box just as V-Diva called it. Nine more points had been added to the Philly total when Maya Mangleyou was boxed on a fourth minor; that let Mo Pain close the bout out at 229-110.

Philly is one win away from their 5th straight trip to Championships; they’ll be looking to lock it down in a semifinal against London at 4 pm tomorrow. Boston will go to the consolation bracket with a bout at 8 pm Saturday against the winner of Dutchland / Montreal.

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