World Cup: Australia Whacks Finland, 179-29

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TORONTO, ON — Australia was the only team to play two games on Thursday, but the extra time on the track seemed to help them. Looking a bit more comfortable on the track with every jam of their day, and building on their earlier defeat of Germany, Australia eventually turned a small lead over Finland into a dominating 179-29 rout to easily place first in Group B.

Australia built a solid lead on small-ball jams, not really dominating Finland in a lengthy series of 4-0 and 5-0 jams but slowly extending their lead out to 31-2 after ten minutes. The solid defense work finally paid off on two big jams there, as a 9-0 powerjam for Cookie Cutter followed by a 10-0 made it 40-2 with about 7:30 in the first half, and a 20-0 on the other side of another powerjam gave them a commanding lead at 60-2.

Finland got their own first powerjam when they badly needed it as Australia’s Ladykiller got boxed and Finland’s Udre got 7-0 while unopposed; KataStrofi had another lead jammer status for Finland by a couple of strides but called a step too late and lost that jam 4-3 to a new score of Australia 69, Finland 10. It was already starting to look dire for Finland, and it didn’t help when they had a powerjam opportunity slip away when Udre followed Ladykiller to tbe box on the final jam of the half. When time expired on the jam and half, Finland was in a significant hole at 85-10.

A natural 10-0 to Australia’s Bambi Von Smash’er got Australia off on the right foot for the second half; unlike the second half against Germany, Australia spent their second half pouring it on rather than nursing their lead. They held Finland to 7 points in the first 10 minutes of the half while adding 37 of their own; with about 9:30 left, Finland completely filled their box and Bambi was back to take advantage with an easy 17-0 past Finland’s lone blocker. That left it 152-17 and the outscore was certain; ten minutes later, Australia had their second win of the day at 179-29.

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