In what amounted to a play-in game for the 2007 Gotham Girls Roller Derby championship bout, the Bronx Gridlock used a devastatingly effective jammer duo and some unrelenting defensive work to continue their undefeated season and secure a spot in that championship by sinking the Brooklyn Bombshells by a score of 144 to 98.
The very first jam of the bout was a bit of a preview of the following hour, as Brooklyn captain and jammer Anne Phetamean managed to get lead jammer status but found herself completely stymied by the Bronx’s star blocker Beyonslay as she attempted to start her scoring pass. While Anne tried to find a path around her, the Bronx’s jammer Beatrix Slaughter slipped through for a quick 4 points, and while Anne eventually managed to get past Beyonslay, she couldn’t break the pack to tie, forced to call the jam with just 3 points to avoid a second scoring pass from Slaughter. Just two jams later, the game was blown open on a similar jam — similar except for the fact that it was Slaughter who got lead jammer, and with the Bombshells’ jammer Ariel Assault completely unable to get through the pack even once, simply kept going around and around to pick up lap points. At the end of a very disheartening 2 minutes for the Bombshells fans, Slaughter had run up a 17-0 on Ariel Assault for a new GGRD single-jam record, making the score a lopsided 25-3 with barely 5 minutes off the clock.
Clearly not interested in sitting on their lead, the Bronx continued to throw a one-two jammer combination of Slaughter and the equally quick and nimble Bonnie Thunders against a Brooklyn team that was mostly lacking the speed to keep from being beaten on the outside line, and the Bronx lead grew inexorably for the first twenty minutes of the half. It wasn’t until the 11th jam of the night that Brooklyn finally got a jam win, with Sassy Hipsaw managing to get lead and to go 8-3 over Bonnie Thunders — unfortunately, by that time it was already 58-22 for the cabbies. Still, though, Sassy added a few more wins in the period, with an especially impressive performance in Jam 14 when she went 8-3 over Beatrix Slaughter even though the Bombshells had blockers Hela Skelter and Raggedy Animal in the box for the majority of the jam. As the first half ended, Sassy was by far her team’s most effective jammer, having scored 30 of their 42 points. However, the Bronx had nearly doubled that total, and the score after 30 minutes was Bronx Gridlock 82, Brooklyn Bombshells 42.
Ginger Snap looks on as teammate Tiger Bomb delivers a chest block to an unidentified (and unfortunate) Brooklyn Bombshell. Photo credit: tigoe
The second half began with an immediate bit of wind being taken out of the Bombshells’ sails, as a late scoreboard correction showed the Bombshells they had more ground to make up than they may had thought going into the locker room (through halftime, the scoreboard had displayed a 70-42 lead for the Bronx.) There would only be more trouble for Brooklyn over the next few jams, as Bronx took the first four jams of the half and opened their lead up to 106-56 with about 22 minutes left in the game. On the fifth jam, though, Sassy Hipsaw got the Brooklyn faithful rocking when opposing jammer Beatrix Slaughter went to the penalty box mid-jam and Hipsaw blew through the pack for two grand slams. Still, though, the Bronx’s blocker Lemony Kickit may have saved a third scoring pass with an impressive rapid-fire series of blocks on Hipsaw that seriously slowed her third exit from the pack.
Hipsaw’s jam turned out to be an aberration, though — the Gridlock had taken lead jammer on the previous four jams and would take it again on the next three, pushing their lead to 50 points at 118-68 with about 15 minutes to play. On the ninth jam of the half, there was a bit of quite effective razzle-dazzle from the Bombshells, as Brooklyn jammer Lil’ Red Terror, having no luck getting through a tough Gridlock platoon of Ginger Snap, Luna Impact, Tiger Bomb and Beyonslay, managed to surreptitiously pass the jammer star to Bombshells pivot Hard Anya, and the Gridlock failed to pick up on the switch quickly enough to react accordingly, allowing Red and Anya to team up for a 6-1 win over Beatrix Slaughter. That brought the score to Gridlock 119, Bombshells 74, but unfortunately for the Bombshells, there was far too much ground to make up and far too little time in which to do it. The Bronx lead would grow as large as 55 points before finally settling at 46, as the Bronx won an entertaining but lopsided contest 144-98.
Brigitte Barhot, Lemony Kickit and the rest of the Gridlock celebrate their trip to the 2007 Gotham Girls championship bout. Photo credit: TheGirlsNY
The 3-0 Bronx Gridlock will face off against the 2-1 Queens of Pain for the Gotham Girls championship on November 17th, but the Gotham Girls will be in all sorts of different action before the home season officially comes to a close. First, the Gotham travel team, which recently took first place at the WFTDA Heartland Havoc tournament in Ohio, will be one of 8 leagues vying for the national championship at the Texas Shootout tournament on September 29th and 30th in Austin, Texas. Next, on October 13th, the travel team will play their first home bout in nearly two years, as Gotham hosts the Rose City Rollers from Portland, Oregon. Finally, on November 3rd, the home teams not playing in the championship will match up with some out-of-town guests in a doubleheader bout, as the Manhattan Mayhem battle the New Jersey Dirty Dames and the Brooklyn Bombshells try to handle the Long Island Roller Rebels. For tickets and more information on all these events, visit gothamgirlsrollerderby.com.