2012 Playoffs RECAP

Hotrod Honeys squeak by Honky Tonk Heartbreakers, 137-122

Beck Wise

In a thrilling back and forth game, the Hotrod Honeys escaped the Honky Tonk Heartbreakers with a 137-122 victory, and will progress to take on the Hell Marys in September 8’s first-place game. Both teams demonstrated deep jammer benches — the first four jams saw eight different skaters take the two stars — but in the end, the greater depth of jamming experience on the Hotrods’ bench saw them prevail. The result is especially noteworthy as the Hotrods ended the game with just seven skaters, following a string of injuries and ejections.

The Hotrod Honeys drew first blood with a 1-0 jam and ten minutes into the game, they’d extended their lead to 18 points, 28-10 — but that was as much air as ever stood between the two teams in this match. A power jam for the Heartbreakers let Kitty Karnage close the gap with multiple scoring passes and while it looked for a second like we might see our first lead change of the night twelve minutes in, Hauss the Boss snuck out of the penalty box and through for points, leaving the score at 39-32 with fifteen minutes to play in the first period.

A couple of minutes later, a mass of penalties were assessed against both teams, leaving just three blockers on the track and Flash Gorgeous in prime scoring position, with a power jam for the Honky Tonk Heartbreakers. With Hauss pinned down in the pack on her initial pass by Headless Highness, Flash brought the Heartbreakers’ score even with the Hotrods and then added eight more points, leaving the score at 47-39 in the Heartbreakers’ favor and 11 minutes left on the period clock.

The margin hovered between five and ten points over the next ten minutes, with the Heartbreakers maintaining their lead — but then, with a couple of minutes left on the clock, the Hotrod Honeys picked up a power jam, with the very dangerous Olivia Shootin’ John wearing their jammer star. She put up a 14-point differential over a boxed Sarah Hipel, giving the Hotrods the lead at 71-62 with just over a minute left in the first half. When the halftime whistle blew, the Heartbreakers trailed by 13 points, 75-62.

The Heartbreakers came out swinging in the second half, battling their way to a 77-all tie three jams into the period. A power jam for Naeslayer let the ladies in plaid grab the lead, 90-77 with 25.40 on the period clock — but the team didn’t get the opportunity to continue that momentum, after a long official time-out during which the Hotrod Honeys’ Maso Kiss was ejected for gross misconduct.

In the next jam, it was a battle between youth and experience, with the veteran Bloody Mary jamming against Heartbreaker rookie Flash Gorgeous. Bloody added a few points to the Hotrods’ score to bring the game within ten points and in the next jam, the Hotrods took the lead as Hauss the Boss racked up the laps over Flash, wearing the star for the second consecutive jam. The score stood at 91-90 in the Hotrods’ favor with 17.40 to play.

The teams traded the lead repeatedly over the next few minutes, but with about 13 minutes remaining to play, the Heartbreakers put a little air in the score, establishing a 10-point margin and holding the lead — admittedly sometimes only by a single point. As the period closed out, the clock read 3.45 and the Heartbreakers led the Hotrods 122-112.

It was all uphill from there for the Hotrods, though, despite a late-game injury that saw Rita Menweep removed from the match with just a couple of minutes remaining on the clock. With less than two minutes remaining to play, the Hotrods held a 4-2 pack advantage and Olivia Shootin’ John had the jammer star — she brought the score to a tie and the crowd to its feet. Heavy blocking from Olympia and Vicious van Gogo contained Flash Gorgeous as OJ picked up the last lead change of the game — and with 58 seconds remaining on the period clock, Flash picked up a penalty to hand the Hotrods a power jam to close out the game.

It wasn’t quite over, though — the jam expired with 27 seconds on the period clock and the Heartbreakers immediately called a time-out, preserving that time and allowing for one final jam. The Hotrods held a 10 point lead, 132-122, and handed Hauss the star, while Flash served out the remainder of her penalty. Hauss nabbed lead jammer status as Flash stood to serve her last 10 seconds.

Upon release from the penalty box, Flash made a fast, untouched first pass through the pack, but Hauss was already on a scoring pass and added five points to the Hotrods’ score before calling off the jam. At the final whistle, the Hotrods had defeated the Heartbreakers 137-122, securing them a place in September 8’s championship game, where they’ll take on the undefeated Hell Marys for a second time. When the teams last clashed, the Hells defeated the Hotrods 126-109 — expect another fast, hard-hitting game when they meet again!

Hell Marys outlast Hustlers, 194-109

Brandon Benitez

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times” is the iconic opening to A Tale Of Two Cities, and maybe Dickens knew a thing or two about the second bout of the evening, as the undefeated Hell Marys took on the defending league champion Hustlers in a clash for the right to play in the Championship.

The night started off well for the Hustlers, as they performed a successful “star pass” from Curvette to Babe Ruthless, gaining the first lead jam of the game as well as an early lead. The Hustlers would also be successful in the next couple of jams providing a small cushion at 12-4. But that would be the beginning of the end for them, as the Hells pulled together, gained lead jammer on the next eight jams in a row and opened up a 59-20 point lead.

The Hells seemed to adopt a new strategy for this match, implementing a 5 jammer rotation, with Sinnerfold, BabyFace Assassin, Luce Bandit, Smarty Pants and “Polly! Polly! Polly!” successfully gaining points.

You can never count out the Hustlers as towards the end of the first half Curvette put together a 15 point power jam, narrowing the margin, but still leaving a daunting task to overcome. Half time saw the score standing at 113-51 Hells.

The effective play the Hell Marys exhibited in the first half continued into the second half as quality play from Kat A. Killzem and Sinnerfold stretched the lead to 86-29 with six and a half minutes remaining.

The Hustlers, who arenʼt a team to just give up, had flashes of brilliance. Chasing Amy, proved to well-qualified as a jammer, and Belle Starr and company continued to fight throughout the whole bout. Unfortunately, the damage had already been done. The final whistle blew and the score read 194-109, Hells Marys.

The Hells now find themselves in a battle for the Championship as they take on the proven veteran Hotrod Honeys in a bout that is sure to entertain. The Hustlers will take on the Heartbreakers, who have been a challenge to beat this season, in a battle for 3rd. Be sure youʼre at the Convention Center, September 8th for the exciting conclusion to the already compelling 2012 season.

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