Lots of roller derby to be had this weekend with three big events triangulated around the U.S., a highly anticipated rivalry, and the starting point of Helsinki’s travels to The Big O next weekend. Here is your weekend preview for April 24th-26th.
The Minnesota RollerGirls versus the Windy City Rollers has been a long time rivalry in the midwest. After playing each other 10 times, through fast derby and knee starts, Windy City has won 9 times, and in 2012 it ended in an impossible tie. This match up has been a hard one to predict in the past, especially since Minnesota has been higher ranked than Windy since May of last year, but this time around both teams look a lot different.
Ranked WFTDA #11, Windy’s charter only has a handful of returning skaters, mostly jammers, and Minnesota has lost most of their regular jamming rotation. Fannie Tanner was a rising rookie jammer in the past, and this year Jacked Pipes looks to be a talented newbie in the star, both will likely be relied on heavily to jam this season. Shiver Me Kimbers also had a good season jamming on her home team, the Dagger Dolls, so she’s likely prepared to score points as well. Minnesota also has some new leadership this year, with BOOMbay Safire leading the All-Stars as head coach.
Flat Track Stats is still expecting a close match up, but predicts that Windy City will (barely) skate away wiht another victory. With most of their jammer rotation still intact, it will be some big skates for Windy blockers to fill, as their cohesive teamwork is what kept them on top in the past. Both Windy’s travel teams had strong performances last year, and with many Second Wind skaters moving up to the All-Stars, it shouldn’t be a far cry from the charter we saw last year. They played Des Moines United last weekend however, and lost to the up and coming team by 15 points. United is currently unranked by WFTDA but may possibly enter in the 20’s.
See how it all plays out Saturday night on tv.mnrollergirls.com.
Tonight the Montreal New Skids on the Block and Toronto’s CN Power will kick of Beast of the East, the 8th Annual Canadian home team tournament. The #17 New Skids are still a bit of an unknown after losing some skaters last season, and so far we have only seen them against #37 Rideau Valley Vixens. The New Skids only beat them by 26 points, but the Vixens seem to be on the rise since their 2nd place D2 finish last fall. Montreal and Toronto both played similarly against Rideau, so this game could be telling to Montreal’s current position.
To the Northwest #63 Helsinki is beginning their pilgrimage to The Big O with a game against #18 Terminal City. Helsinki swept all three of their games at the WFTDA European Tournament last November, but recently lost to #32 Stockholm by 78 points. Terminal City hasn’t played since WFTDA tournaments, but do have some tender new head shots that may ignite a fire.
Next week, Helsinki will move on to Seattle to take on Rat City in one unsanctioned and one sanctioned game on Tuesday and Wednesday before a full weekend in Eugene, Oregon.
#19 Ohio is already on their 7th game this weekend against #33 Queen City at home. These two have met twice previously, with Ohio winning both times. Queen City played a strong game against #27 Steel City this past weekend. Ohio boasts a 29-1 record at home since 2010, and will be looking to make it 30.
The Detroit All-Stars are back home from a road win against the Big Easy, and will play their only public home game this weekend against #78 Ft. Wayne. Detroit is back up in the rankings, sitting at #25 so far this year with two substantial wins on their record, looking for a third.
#92 Cincinnati has won 1 and lost 1 game so far this year, and Saturday they are hosting #55 Blue Ridge who has a 3-2 record, and placed 2nd at this year’s Clover Cup. #27 Steel City will drive over for a closed game against Blue Ridge as well. Steel Hurtin’ squeaked out a win last weekend against Queen City, making their season 2-4 after losing all three of their games at Quad City Chaos.
Some more European WFTDA teams have crept into the playoff bubble this year, and #32 Stockholm will be hosting #82 Crime City this weekend. The last time the two met was in July of last year, and it came down to a 5-point win by Stockholm.
#44 Chicago Outfit is playing again after their 34-point win over Killamazoo on the road last weekend. They’re hosting #43 Kansas City in what should be an excitingly close match up.
#51 Omaha is already 3-2 in 2015, but they have been primarily playing teams from Division 2, and this weekend they are hosting #83 North Star. Flat Track Stats has them ranked a lot closer, and both have taken on Sioux City this year, with Omaha winning by 35 points and North Star by 2.
Suburbia has already dropped 16 places so far in 2015 with a 0-3 record. Their first game was against Brandywine, who we saw last weekend is gaining some momentum this year. Next Suburbia made a quick European tour to take on Auld Reekie and Bear City, losing to both by triple digits. This weekend they are hosting #108 Connecticut who already has 3 sanctioned wins under their belt to one loss.
#97 Burning River is on the rise this season with a new lineup and a 6-game winning streak. #123 Bleeding Heartland will travel to them this weekend after two hard losses so far in 2015.
The British Roller Derby Champs, which run from January to September will continue with a men’s game this weekend. Saturday the South Wales Silures will take on Tyne & Fear ranked #15 in MRDA. The Silures are currently unranked officially, but FTS puts them at #9 with a couple wins under their belt this year. Tyne & Fear beat #5 Southern Discomfort by 3 points last month though, so this may be an interesting match up.
The Columbia QuadSquad are hosting the Second Annual Southern Discomfort tournament Saturday and Sunday. There are WFTDA charter teams attending, ranging from #14 Jacksonville to #95 Charlotte. Jacksonville has achieved 3 wins so far this year, two substantial differentials, and one close game against Atlanta. They will be a strong force against D2 team #54 Killamazoo, and a strong test against the rising #36 Calgary.
Jacksonville’s junior league, the Duval Roller Dolls, will be heading further North this weekend to Indiana for three games against Indianpolis, Ft. Wayne, and the Hoosier Bruisers.
Charlottesville had a 61-point win over Nashville in March, which bumped them up 16 spots to #61. They have games against #87 Ft. Myers and #36 Clagary this weekend to further prove themselves.
This could also be a good weekend for Brandywine who showed their strength last weekend, if they score big against #74 Green Mt. and #79 Roc City, and if they do well against last year’s D1 attendees, #40 Columbia.
The hosts, #40 Columbia, is the only to have four games over the two days against #54 Killamazoo, #75 Green Mt., and #77 Brandywine. #95 Charlotte will be there for one game against Green Mt.
Also this weekend, the Treasure Valley Rollergirls are hosting the 6th annual Spudtown Knockdown in Garden City, Idaho. There will be a range of teams attending, with one track for WFTDA sanctioned play, and one for the six teams playing non-sanctioned games. It will also feature a game of elected MVPs from the weekend against the #58 ranked hosts.
The sanctioned track will have teams ranked from Boulder County at #50 to Castle Rock at #227. New Hampshire, who placed 9th last year in D1 playoffs, will be in attendance and has recently fallen 23 places to #67. They will face off against Treasure Valley and Boulder County. Sac City, who missed out on WFTDA tournaments last year, currently sits at #81 and will look to improve against the same three teams.
#134 Snake Pit, #169 Happy Valley, #227 Castle Rock and unranked Rainier will all play each other as well.
Also out West, the Angel City Derby Girls will be hosting Tinseltown Showdown in Culver City, California. There will be five games over two days with #9 ACDG taking on #34 Santa Cruz, who recently fell ten places, and #28 Arizona who just went up seven. #64 Sacred City, who fell 15 places with the March rankings release, will also be in attendance, matched up with Arizona and Santa Cruz. The event will be broadcasted online and can be accessed for free through WFTDA.tv.
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