This post was originally featured at Derby News Network in June 2008.
KENDALL PARK, NJ — A nightmarish first half for the Harm City Homicide put them at a nearly 100 point deficit after thirty minutes of play, but a surprising halftime turnaround for the underdogs led to a nearly perfectly matched second half against the New York Shock Exchange. Still, though, the reigning kings of the East Coast men’s derby scene were easily successful in their second defense of the Athletic Cup trophy, winning 147 to 49.
The first time the NYSE and Homicide faced off in a 20 minute exhibition, New York had jumped out to a 35-0 lead before Homicide ever got on the board — and the beginning of this full-length bout was disheartening deja vu for the boys in blue. The bout kicked off with a quick 4-0 for Rinkworm over Justice Feelgood Marshall, but NYSE’s Jonathan R tore up the track for three grand slams over Deutsch Bag in jam 2 for a 15-0 score that made it New York 19, Harm City 0.
For the next five jams, NYSE would drop a single lap on Harm City and call it just before the opposing jammer could start their scoring pass, leading to a frustrating series of shutouts — and a massive advantage on the scoreboard. It was jam 8 before Harm City got on the board, in a 9-4 win for Mothra over Harm City’s Virginia Slim, and the score was a lopsided 51-4 at that point.
Harm City was especially hampered by NYSE’s stranglehold on lead jammer — they pulled it for the first 14 jams in row and all but two of of the half’s 20 jams. It was not until jam 19 that Harm City finally got a lead jam call and a jam win, with a 3-0 for Justice Feelgood Marshall over Wolfgang Von Stomp, but by then it was a 98-9 advantage for NYSE, and Jonathan R somehow managed to find a way to add one more demoralizing jam over Harm City, putting up a 5-0 grand slam over Sin Diesel to lift NYSE over 100 points just as time expired in the half, 103-9.
While a win was long out of reach for Harm City by the break, they came out to play a second half that bore almost no relation to the first. After getting lead only once in the previous half, they gained a bit of a confidence boost by grabbing it on the opening three jams of the second. Unfortunately, though, there would be a lengthy pause in the action after the third jam, when NYSE’s bad luck with jammer injuries flared up again — Mothra suffered a broken leg and would have to be removed by stretcher.
On the first jam after the delay, Rinkworm ran up a 14-0 on Virginia Slim, making the score 119-9, and it looked like the NYSE lead was going to start growing inexorably again, but Homicide’s offensive blocking finally started producing, creating opportunities for much-needed lead jam calls. NYSE’s lead grew to 129-17 after another big jam for Rinkworm (10-4 over Sin Diesel), but Homicide pulled another three lead jams in a row to follow that and got help from an 8-0 for Deutsch Bag over Psycho Billy, making it 129-25.
With the Homicide no longer giving up multiple scoring laps and having much more success separating the NYSE blockers from their support, their fortunes began to rise. They had their best sequence of the bout with about 13 minutes to play, as Justice Feelgood Marshall got lead and lapped Patrick Bateman in an 8-0 jam, Virginia Slim followed that up with a 5-0 over a penalized Maulin’ Brando, and Justice was back two jams later for lead and a 3-1 over Rinkworm, bringing the score to Shock Exchange 138, Homicide 43.
Harm City managed to take lead jammer 10 times in the second half against 9 for Shock Exchange, and in the end, the Homicide had a bit of a moral victory by only losing the second half by 4 points (44-40) after losing the first by 94. But the scoreboard reflects no moral victories, and the New York Shock Exchange claimed another lopsided win, 147-49.
Scoring leaders for the Shock Exchange were Rinkworm with 72 points on 14 jams and a gaudy +59 jammer point differential, Jonathan R with 38 points on 8 jams and a perfect +38 JPD, and Mothra with 18 points on 6 jams and a +14 JPD.
After Mothra’s injury, NYSE was forced to scramble their jammer lineup a bit — over the course of the night, they also sent Psycho Billy (6 points, 4 jams, -4 JPD), Wolfgang Von Stomp (5 points, 4 jams, +2 JPD), Darth Invader (4 points, 1 jam, +2 JPD), Abraham Drinkin’ (4 points, 2 jams, even JPD), Patrick Bateman (0 points, 1 jam, -8 JPD) and Maulin’ Brando (0 points, 2 jams, -5 JPD) to the second line.
The Homicide jammer stable was somewhat more … well, stable. Justice Feelgood Marshall led Harm City with 18 points on 13 jams and a -7 JPD, while Virginia Slim contributed 15 points on 11 jams with a -32 JPD. Deustch Bag put up 12 points on 12 jams and had a -27 JPD. Sin Diesel (4 points, 4 jams, -19 JPD ) and Hung Solo (0 points, 2 jams, -13 JPD) also took the star for the Homicide.
Harm City played a slightly cleaner bout than New York, with the Baltimore crew getting 41 minors and 13 majors against 59 minors and 19 majors for the Shock Exchange. NYSE took lead jammer on 27 of 42 jams (64 percent), while Homicide pulled it on 11 (26 percent).
Shock Exchange is next in action against the Diamond City Death Kings of Wilkes-Barre, PA in a 40-minute match that’s part of a double-header on July 13th. Shore Points Roller Derby will be taking on a standalone team, the Sisters of Mayhem from Hackettstown, NJ. Harm City does not currently have their next bout scheduled.