Heartland Havoc: Day Three
Windy City Surprises Carolina, 104-55
Gotham Stops Detroit, 157-56
Carolina Holds Off Detroit for Third Place, 94-84
Gotham Defeats Windy City In Championship Game, 134-71
(t7) Windy City 104, (t3) Carolina 55
Windy City scored their second major upset in a row in Sunday’s first semifinal game, completely controlling a very skilled Carolina team throughout the second two periods to gain a surprise berth in the Heartland Havoc championship.
After a scoreless first jam between Carolina’s Princess America and Windy City’s Ying O’ Fire, Carolina got on the board first with a 2-0 jam for Betty Rumble over Kola Loka. Windy City grabbed the lead two jams later when Yvette Yourmaker got lead jammer status and used it to go 3-0 over Princess America. The teams kept it fairly tight throughout the period. With about 10 minutes left in the period, Windy City momentarily grabbed a big 24-10 lead when Yvette Yourmaker rang up a 13-0 jam over a penalized Betty Rumble, but Carolina’s Zella Lugosi narrowed it to 24-19 on the very next jam by going 9-0 after Ying O’Fire took her own trip to the penalty box. Windy City would take lead jammer status on the last three jams of the period, but was often forced to call jams at very small margins to keep Carolina from gaining ground, and the period ended with Windy City up by 9 points, 30-21.
In the second period, Windy City did almost exactly the same thing they did to Madison on the previous day, all but snuffing out Carolina’s offense with excellent defensive teamwork that left Carolina jammers constantly trapped behind a shifting line of blue blockers. On the period’s second jam, Windy City jammer Kola Loka was sent to the penalty box on a major for knocking down opposing jammer Princess America from behind. Princess got 6 points out of that to Kola’s 0 to put the score at Windy City 36, Carolina 27, but that was the end of Carolina’s scoring for some time. Over the next seven jams, Carolina could only put a single point on the board, with Windy City’s jammers owning lead jammer status and stopping jams before Carolina jammers could get around for a scoring pass. That allowed Windy City to stretch their lead out to 54-28, but just when it looked like Windy City was in complete control, Carolina’s ubiquitous Princess America busted out a much needed 11-0 jam with opposing jammer Hoosier Mama in the penalty box, narrowing the score to Windy City 54, Carolina 39. As it turned out, though, Carolina scored more points in that single jam than they did in the whole rest of the period put together — shut out again on the final two jams of the period, Carolina found themselves on the wrong side of a 68-39 score at the end of the second period.
If Windy City’s defense had been dominant in the second period, it went to nearly omnipotent in the third period. Over 12 minutes elapsed before Carolina got any points on the board at all, with their increasingly frustrated jammers having almost no luck getting lead jammer status. It wasn’t till the ninth jam of the period that Carolina jammer Zella Lugosi finally scored some points for her team on a 5-3 jam over Windy City’s Ying O’Fire. By that time, though, there were only about 7 minutes left to play, Windy City was up by a commanding 90-44, and anybody who might have thought their second-round victory over Madison was a fluke was being conclusively proven wrong. In the end, Windy City nearly doubled up the #3 seed, 104-55, and advanced to the championship game.
(t5) Gotham 157, (t9) Detroit 56
In the second semifinal game, Gotham continued cutting a swath of destruction through the Heartland Havoc, ending Detroit’s surprisingly deep run into the tournament with a punishing 157-56 victory.
Once again, Gotham began dominating early in the game, with Gotham jammer Suzy Hotrod setting the tone by lapping Detroit jammer Killbox for a 5-0 jam. While Racer McChaseher got Detroit on the board on the next jam with 3 points, Gotham’s Beatrix Slaughter did her one better with 4. As the period progressed, Gotham consistently put up small-margin wins while often shutting out the Detroit jammers. With about 12 minutes left in the first, Gotham blocker Beyonslay deployed a massive hip check right at the boundary line that sent Detroit’s jammer Racer McChaseher all the way off the sport court and onto the surrounding concrete, getting an equally massive reaction from the Gotham fans in that section of the audience. It was not until late into the period that Detroit was able to get a jam win, with Racer McChaseher nabbing lead jammer status to put up a 4-0 over Gotham’s Cheap Skate. That made the score Gotham 32, Detroit 11 — unfortunately for Detroit, though, Beatrix Slaughter went wild on the next jam, using a Vega Vendetta trip to the penalty box to put up a whopping 13 points. Detroit only scored 1 more point in the period, which ended with Gotham in the driver’s seat, 54-12.
While there was slightly more offense for Detroit in the second period, there wouldn’t be any significant swing in momentum. After Detroit got a little movement on the scoreboard with Racer McChaseher picking up a 4-0 jam on Suzy Hotrod (who started the period in the penalty box), Gotham’s defense once again closed down the Detroit jammers, with Bonnie Thunders going 4-0 over Rock Candy, Cheap Skate scoring a quick 1-0 over Racer McChaseher, and Suzy Hotrod picking her her fourth grand slam of the bout with a 5-0 over Killbox. Detroit’s powerful jammer Racer McChaseher finally got big help from the Detroit defense on the period’s seventh jam, racking up 8 points before opposing jammer Beatrix Slaughter could finally break the pack and call off the jam. That brought the score to Gotham 67, Detroit 26, but things started looking considerably bleaker for Detroit when the following two jams found Bonnie Thunders dropping a 5-0 against Rude Awakening and Cheap Skate following that with a big 13-0 jam against Killbox, who spent a minute of the jam in the penalty box. By the end of the period, Gotham had broken the century mark, up by an all-but-insurmountable 104 to 36.
The final period looked a great deal like the previous two — Gotham picked up around 4 or 5 points on nearly every lap, while Detroit was shut out more often than not. Racer McChaseher displayed rather stunning endurance, jamming almost every other jam for Detroit and continuing to skate at top speed, with the Gotham blockers often bouncing off of her on attempted takedowns. Still, though, no Detroit jammer was ever able to pull far ahead of any Gotham jammer. On the very last jam of the game, Cheap Skate scored a 2-0 jam over Racer McChaseher that pushed Gotham’s margin of victory over 100 — Gotham 157, Detroit 56 — and sent Gotham on to face Windy City in the championship match.
(t3) Carolina 94, (t9) Detroit 84
Carolina earned the third seed in September’s national tournament, sending a tired but valiant Detroit squad to their second defeat in three hours, 94-84.
Although it certainly wasn’t obvious at the time, this bout was in a way decided in the third and fourth jams. Detroit had gotten a small early lead with Racer McChaseher starting off the bout with a 4-0 jam over Zella Lugosi, but Carolina’s Princess America ran circles around Detroit’s Bikini Killer on jam 3, putting up a 13-0 spot. With Bikini Killer in the penalty box to start the following jam, Carolina sent out rookie Holly Wanna Crackya for her first jam in interleague play, and she made a splashy debut, picking up 11 points and calling off the jam just as Bikini Killer became eligible to score points. That put Carolina up 24-4, and while Detroit made repeated runs at the 3 seed, the margin hovered right around 20 points for the majority of the remainder of the bout. On the 6th jam, Killbox kept the margin from getting out of hand with an 11-6 jam over Kitty Crowbar that moved the score to 32-15, but the teams remained almost exactly even for the rest of the period, which ended Carolina 50, Detroit 25.
Detroit started relying more heavily on their ace jammer Racer McChaseher in the second period, who repeatedly rose to the occasion, rarely flagging and seeming to shrug off most shoulder blocks. On the period’s first jam, Racer got the Detroit fans on their feet with a 8-0 jam over Zella Lugosi that put the score at Carolina 50, Detroit 33. Again the teams continued to trade jam victories, but Carolina’s defense had a pivotal moment in the period’s fifth jam when they managed to hold Detroit’s jammer Rock Candy scoreless for a full two minutes while Princess America cooled her heels in the penalty box, protecting a 60-39 lead. Detroit then started a rally that almost changed the complexion of the game — Detroit’s Cookie Rumble went 4-0 over Carolina’s DVS, Killbox dropped a 4-0 on Holly Wanna Crackya (helped out by lead jammer Holly calling the jam a few seconds too late), and then Racer McChaseher yet again sparked the Detroit fans with a big 9-0 jam over a penalized Betty Rumble. That brought the score to Carolina 63, Detroit 56 with about three minutes left to play in the period. Detroit tried to take advantage of a lengthy break in the action by sending Racer back to the jammer line to face off against Princess America on the following jam, but Princess rang up 9 points to Racer’s 2, giving Carolina a bit more breathing room at 72-60. With not quite enough time left on the clock for any scoring in the following jam, the score stood there as the second period ended.
Carolina didn’t allow Detroit to continue their comeback as the third period started, going on a 16-2 run over the first six jams of the period to open up a 87-64 lead. Racer McChaseher tried to get Detroit back in the game with a 5-0 grand slam over Princess America, but with about seven minutes to go in the game, Holly Wanna Crackya killed that Detroit momentum with a 7-0 jam over Cookie Rumble, putting the score at Carolina 94, Detroit 69. Oddly enough, although there would be five more jams in the bout, Detroit’s Racer McChaseher would be the only jammer on either team to score any more points, picking up a 5-0 grand slam on each of her last three jams. While Detroit managed to pull to within 10 points on the final jam, there wouldn’t be enough time to fully erase Carolina’s lead, and the game ended Carolina 94, Detroit 84.
By finishing third, Carolina earns the right to take on the West’s number #2 seed, Tucson, in the first round of September’s national tournament. Fourth place Detroit will battle the West’s #1 seed, Rat City. For her first-class performance through the entire weekend, Detroit’s Racer McChaseher was voted MVP of the tournament at the closing ceremonies.
(t5) Gotham 134, (t7) Windy City 71
In the championship game of Heartland Havoc, New York’s Gotham Girls rolled to their fourth dominating win in a row, controlling the Windy City Rollers for a full 60 minutes to win 134-71 and claim the #1 seed in September’s national tournament.
Both leagues had brought a sizable and raucous contingent of fans to Columbus, but the Gotham fans had a lot more to cheer for in the first few jams. The first jam went 9-0 for Gotham’s Suzy Hotrod over Ying O’Fire, and Gotham’s Beatrix Slaughter made the score 17-0 on the following jam by dropping 8 points on Ying, who ended the first jam in the penalty box. On the third jam, Bonnie Thunders got out so far ahead of Windy City’s jammer Hoosier Mama that Mama elected to switch to defense, joining the rest of her blockers in trying to keep Thunders from breaking through the pack — but Thunders found her way through anyway and called off the jam at 5-0. After just three jams, Gotham was up 22-0 and had put up a grand slam on each of the period’s three jams. Yvette Yourmaker finally got Windy City on the board with 3 points on the following jam, but Gotham’s Cheap Skate canceled those out with 3 of her own. It wasn’t until the seventh jam that Windy City was able to get a solid win, with Hoosier Mama scoring 7 points while Beatrix Slaughter languished in the penalty box to bring the score to Gotham 38, Windy City 18. While Windy City managed to play a bit more evenly for the rest of the period, they couldn’t shut down the Gotham jammers as they’d done to Madison and Carolina, and the Gotham lead grew inexorably, with the score at the end of the first period Gotham 54, Windy City 21.
Windy City did better in the second period. In the first period, they’d only gotten lead jammer once in 12 tries, but in the second period they were able take it on 5 out of 14 jams, which translated to more jam wins. Gotham still continued to build their lead, though, up by 74 to 26 after 4 jams. Fortunately for Windy City, though, there was a momentary momentum shift on the next two jams, when Varla Vendetta got lead jammer and a 4-0 over Brigitte Barhot and Yvette Yourmaker followed that up with a big 11-0 jam over Sweet Sherry Pie, who went to the penalty box during the jam. That brought the score to Gotham 74, Windy City 41, giving the still passionate Windy City fans some hope. It looked like Windy City might get a big chance two jams later, when Gotham’s Sweet Sherry Pie had to start the jam in the penalty box and Windy City’s Malice In Chains got to start the jam unopposed. Unfortunately for the Chicago fans, though, Malice was called out on a major for cutting the track as she broke the pack, and the power play opportunity was lost at 0-0. On the period’s second-to-last jam, Gotham’s Bonnie Thunders delivered a serious blow to the Windy City chances by dropping a 10-0 double grand slam on Kola Loka, who started the jam in the box, and that brought the score to Gotham 94, Windy City 51 as the period ended.
Gotham’s defense proved to be even more dominant in the final period than it had been in the previous two, holding Windy City to only 20 points in the third. Meanwhile, their jammers owned lead jammer status in this period, taking it for a crucial run of seven jams in a row through the middle of the period that made it impossible for Windy City to construct an already unlikely comeback. With about ten minutes left in the game, Suzy Hotrod all but ended what hope Windy City had, running up a 10-1 jam on Kola Loka that made the score Gotham 116, Windy City 63. With about 5 minutes left to play, Windy City’s Megan Formor got herself ejected on an insubordination penalty for apparently refusing to head to the penalty box, but that was about all the fireworks Windy City was able to create against a defense that had proven itself to be the best in the East. Heartland Havoc ended with Gotham throwing in blocker Beyonslay as a jammer, but there wasn’t quite enough time left in the period for anybody to claim lead, and Gotham explosively celebrated their 134-71 championship victory over a very surprising and very worthy Windy City.
Gotham’s victory puts them up against the #4 West seed, Kansas City, in September’s national tournament. Windy City draws the #3 seed, the hosting Texas Rollergirls.