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Archive for the ‘Kansas City Roller Warriors’ Category

Now that’s more like it

Posted by Justice Feelgood Marshall on October 4, 2007

On the tail of the front-page Chicago Tribune article on Windy City at Heartland Havoc, here comes another encouraging sign of derby’s slow rise to respect in the mainstream media, this one from the Kansas City Star:

Bummer about the conjoined twins and all, but this image is a very, very good thing for the continued growth of roller derby.

More good sports coverage here in the Austin Chronicle (even if they do engage in the time-honored tradition of hating on the refs) and Kansas City’s The Pitch.

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Posted in Championship Bouts, Derby in the Media, Interleague Bouts, Kansas City Roller Warriors, Rat City Rollergirls, Tournaments | 1 Comment »

Texas Shootout Bout Recap: Kansas City 89, Rat City 85

Posted by Justice Feelgood Marshall on October 2, 2007


photo credit: insanitylabs

Kansas City and Rat City played an instant classic of a contest to cap off the Texas Shootout. The #1 seed in the west, Rat City, was heavily favored coming into the final match of the tournament, but, like #1 East seed Gotham before them, found out the hard way that Kansas City was just playing a tiny bit smarter, harder and faster than everybody else. A bout full of explosive performances, numerous lead changes, pivotal strategic adjustments and thunderous support from both teams’ loyal fanbases ended up coming down to the very last instants of the very last jam, with Kansas City barely holding off a desperate late comeback and hanging on to become the 2007 WFTDA champions, 89-85.

The first jam went 4-0 for Rat City as Miss Fortune got the better of Xcelerator, but Kansas City hit back hard on the following jam, where their defense held Burnett Down on her opening lap for a full 2 minutes while Snot Rocket scooped up 9 points. Over the course of the next four jams, the teams traded lead jammer status and wins, keeping the margin about the same. On Jam 6, between Blonde ‘n’ Bitchin for Rat City against Xcelerator for Kansas City, Rat City made a questionable strategic decision, with Blonde ‘n’ Bitchin getting 4 points before Xcelerator was sprung from the penalty box but choosing not to call the jam before Xcelerator got a chance to get on the board. The gamble didn’t pay off, and Rat City lost a chance to close the gap as the jam ended 6-6. The total score was Kansas City 26, Rat City 19 at that point, and Snot Rocket would open up the lead further by going 7-3 over a penalized Miss Fortune on the next jam (with Miss Fortune just barely picking up her 3 points as time expired in the full-length jam.) Next up, Kansas City pulled out a hole card by sending out a well-rested Dominant Jean for the first time in the tournament, replacing Fearlys in the Kansas City jammer rotation. Jean would fit right in, getting lead jammer status and scoring a quick 2-0 over Rat City’s Pia Mess. That made the score Kansas City 35, Rat City 22 with about 13 minutes left in the half, but events took a sharp turn in favor of Rat City at that point.

On the next four jams, Rat City jammers picked up three grand slam laps while their defense repeatedly ensnared Kansas City jammers — a 9-0 for Blonde ‘n’ Bitchin over Jade Lightning, a 5-0 over Miss Fortune over Dee Claw (who barely avoided more damage by getting lead jammer and cutting off the action an instant before Miss Fortune would have started her second scoring pass), and a 5-0 over Valtron over Snot Rocket. Kansas City’s only offense in that series would be a close 4-3 victory for Xcelerator over Ann R. Kissed. Suddenly, Rat City had gone on a 22-4 run that turned a double-digit Kansas City lead into a nine-point Rat City lead at Rat City 48, Kansas City 39, with about 5 minutes left in the half. It looked for a moment like Rat City might be on their way to taking control of the bout, but Xcelerator had different ideas, running up a 7-0 jam over Valtron that got the Kansas City war drums in turn 4 thumping hard. Blonde ‘n’ Bitchin would get Rat City a 2-1 win on the following jam and there would not be any time for more scoring in the period, but even though Rat City was winning at 50-47, Kansas City seemed to have the momentum simply by proving they could stick with the #1 team in the nation for a full thirty minutes.

Of course, Kansas City was interested in more than just sticking with Rat City in the second half. While the teams traded victories in the first three jams of the half, leaving Rat City with a 60-51 lead, Kansas City seriously got their game together afterwards, getting lead jammer status on an amazing 10 jams in a row. On Jam 5 of the half, Snot Rocket jammer got a massive response from the crowd when she chose to rely on her strength rather than her speed to get past Rat City’s Skate Trooper, sending Trooper flying with a block that sprung Rocket from the pack on the way to a 6-0 win. That put the score at Rat City 64, Kansas City 60, and two jams later, Rat City’s consistent problems with the penalty box put the lead in Kansas City hands, 66-65, as Dee Claw ran up 3 points for KC while Rat City’s Ann R. Kissed watched from the box. Still in the middle of their impressive run of lead jammer jams, Kansas City would win every jam for the next 10 minutes, culminating in a 8-4 jam win for Xcelerator over Pia Mess. That made the score Kansas City 89, Rat City 76 with 7 minutes left in the half, the bout and the tournament.

In those 7 minutes, though, Rat City came within a hair’s breadth of taking the bout back. Suddenly, Kansas City found themselves incapable of scoring points, and for the third time in three games had to hold off a late run. First, the Rat City defense was able to bottle up Snot Rocket for a full-length jam while Ann R. Kissed spent a minute in the penalty box in a jam that went 1-0 for Ann. Apparently rested from her time in the box, Ann R. Kissed would burst out on the following jam to lap Kansas City’s Jade Lightning, getting a 4-0 on the board for Rat City. The score was then Kansas City 89, Rat City 81, and Miss Fortune got Rat City tantalizingly close with a 4-0 over Xcelerator that made the score 89-85 with only about a minute left to play.


In the crucial final seconds, Rat City’s Valtron can’t find a way through tough defense from Princess Slay-Ya, Patti Wackin & Snot Rocket. Photo credit: insanitylabs

It would come down to Valtron on the jammer line for Rat City against Snot Rocket for Kansas City, and though Valtron burst out of the pack first, she was not awarded lead jammer status. With only about thirty seconds left on the clock, Snot Rocket took a calculated gamble at this juncture, choosing to hang in the back of the pack and risk her lap point — potentially the game-winning point — by helping her rear defenders block Valtron. The gamble worked out, as Valtron was unable to get through in the few seconds remaining, and the Austin Convention Center went absolutely wild for an enormous upset. Xcelerator was awarded the MVP trophy for the tournament, and the Kansas City Roller Warriors were crowned the new queens of the derby world by knocking off the #1 ranked team in the nation, 89-85.

Posted in Bout Recaps, Championship Bouts, Interleague Bouts, Kansas City Roller Warriors, Rat City Rollergirls, Tournaments | 11 Comments »

Texas Shootout Bout Recap: Kansas City 116, Carolina 108

Posted by Justice Feelgood Marshall on October 2, 2007

Kansas City got a chance to play for the national championship in flat-track roller derby by outracing and outblocking a dogged Carolina team in the semifinal bout of the Texas Shootout, 116 to 108.


Kansas City’s Xcelerator squeezes past Carolina pivot Denise Lightning, while Carolina jammer Princess America tries to make up the ground. Photo credit: insanitylabs

For the first twenty minutes or so of the first half, it looked like Carolina had figured out a way to answer Kansas City’s gameplan, as they quickly picked up a 5-0 on a grand slam for Zella Lugosi over Fearlys. Although Kansas City won the second jam, a full two minutes that saw Xcelerator beat out Denise Lightning, it was only a one point 8-7 win, and Carolina would win each of the next three jams by three points. That run climaxed with an exciting 10-7 win for Zella Lugosi over Dee Claw, where Zella managed to break the pack just as time ran out on another full two minute jam. The score then stood at Carolina 28, Kansas City 15 with about 19 minutes left in the half, but that was where Kansas City turned the game around rather abruptly. After a quick 2-1 for Kansas City’s Fearlys over Princess America, Kansas City’s Xcelerator had a 10-6 over Violent Femme (who passed the jammer star to pivot Denise Lightning early in the jam), and then the always dangerous Snot Rocket busted out a 7-0 jam over Princess America, who had to spend a minute of the jam in the penalty box. Suddenly, it was all tied up at 35 with about 13 minutes left in the half. Carolina would pull back ahead for a short time, but the 13th jam of the half proved to be very unlucky for them, as the Kansas City defense completely had Zella Lugosi’s number and the Carolina defense could not find a way to stop Snot Rocket, who thundered through the pack for three grand slams on her way to a 15-0 jam. The score was Kansas City 63, Carolina 46, the KC corner in turn 4 was creating a massive ruckus, and the momentum had palpably changed. Kansas City’s Xcelerator continued to impress on the final jam of the period, where she kept the momentum going by managing to claim lead jammer and barely complete a 4 point scoring pass even though there were only about 40 seconds left in the period when the jam started. After the first thirty minutes, Kansas City was sitting on a 70-50 lead.


photo credit: insanitylabs

The Kansas City lead would remain at about 20 for the majority of the second half. In the seventh jam, Carolina got a golden opportunity to close in a little bit. With the score Kansas City 91, Carolina 70, Betty Rumble took the jammer star for Carolina against Snot Rocket for Kansas City. Snot Rocket burst out of the pack first, but by cutting the track to get out, she found herself going to the box on a major penalty. However, Rumble was quite obviously tiring, and the KC defense, keyed by Princess Slay-Ya and Patti Wackin, managed to keep her on the same lap for the full minute of Snot Rocket’s penalty. As the penalty came to an end, Rocket came back out of the box … but entered the pack illegally, picking up a fourth minor and going directly back to the box. While that jam ended 0-0, it gave Carolina a chance to start the next jam with Princess America unopposed on the jammer line. She was extremely opposed in the pack, though, this time with Annie Maul, Red Ripper and Xavia all taking turns bashing Princess to the outside, keeping her stuck on her opening lap until Snot Rocket finally got out of the box, claimed lead jammer, and put up 4 points, making the score Kansas City 95, Carolina 70. In those two jams, Kansas City had managed to come out ahead on the scoreboard even though they were missing their jammer for over two minutes. Trouble continued for Carolina on the next jam, when crucial weapon Denise Lightning fell backwards hard early in the next jam, causing the action to stop for some time while the EMTs attended to her. Denise would remain in the game, but looked like she was continuing to feel the effects.

Coming into the end of the bout, though, Carolina got a series of breaks that they were almost able to turn into an improbable comeback. With about 7 minutes left in the game and Kansas City up 113-88, Betty Rumble was able to put up a grand slam over Jade Lightning in the course of running up a 9-0 margin. Just as crucially, Jade picked up her fourth minor in the waning seconds of the jam, allowing Carolina to send Princess America to the jammer line unopposed in the next jam. This time, she capitalized on the chance, quickly picking up lead jammer status and 5 points on her first scoring pass. Jade got out of the box and managed to pick up 3 points for Kansas City before Princess made another scoring pass and called it off. That narrowed Kansas City’s lead to 11 points, 116-105, which was the closest Carolina had been in the whole half. Unfortunately for the East girls, there was less than a minute left on the game clock, and the final jam wouldn’t contain enough time for Carolina jammer Denise Lightning to get more than one scoring pass in. Kansas City hung on to win, 116-108.

Posted in Bout Recaps, Carolina Roller Girls, Interleague Bouts, Kansas City Roller Warriors, Tournaments | Leave a Comment »

Texas Shootout Bout Recap: Kansas City 116, Gotham 101

Posted by Justice Feelgood Marshall on September 30, 2007

The Texas Shootout opened with a significant upset, as the highest seed from the East, Gotham, was booted by the lowest seed from the West, Kansas City.


photo credit: insanitylabs

Kansas City kicked off the bout by picking up lead jammer on nearly every jam, apparently crossing up the normally effective Gotham defense with the blinding speed of their two star jammers Xcelerator and Snot Rocket. Kansas City jumped out to a 10-5 lead on the second jam and built their lead slowly but steadily for the first 15 minutes of the half. After 8 jams, Gotham still had yet to secure lead jammer status and Kansas City was up 31-17 — however, after a timeout, Gotham seemed set to take control of the game as they picked up lead jammer three times in a row. That keyed a 14-3 Gotham run that gave Gotham their first lead of the bout, 36-34, with about 10 minutes in the half. At about this time, though, Gotham was already showing clear (and somewhat surprising, given their machine-like performance at Heartland Havoc) signs of fatigue, with some blockers unable to stay with the pack and some jammers unable to fully accelerate when approaching the pack. Kansas City showed no such signs, though, and on a full 2-minute Jam 15, Snot Rocket tied the game back up at 43 with a 9-7 win over Cheap Skate. The remainder of the half was marked by fairly low-scoing jams, but the margins favored Kansas City, and the half ended with Kansas City up 60-53.

For nearly the entire second half, the Kansas City lead would hover around 10 points, but Gotham was never able to get any decisive jam wins against them to erase that lead, in large part due to the speed of the Kansas City pack and the nimbleness of their jammers. Kansas City’s Xeclerator, in particular, often elected not to call off jams in situations where it would have seemed strategically advantageous due to a KCRW advantage in the jam score, but her choice was correct more often than not, as the Kansas City pack was usually able to hold back a Gotham jammer while Xcelerator used her speed to close the gap and add a few more points before calling it off. Meanwhile, Gotham made a small but crucial error in Jam 8, when they got a rare advantage over Xeclerator — first, Gotham blocker Fisti Cuffs laid her out on a hard but clean fit, and second, Xeclerator went the box on a fourth minor before completing her opening pass. Bonnie Thunders picked up four points and was coming around for more, but when Xeclerator got back out on the track, Thunders called the jam, thinking she was on the verge of scoring points. Thunders won the jam 4-0, and that made the score 86-75, but against Kansas City playing as well as they were, Gotham would need every last potential point just to stay in the bout.

Gotham just could not close that gap, and with about 4 minutes, the score was 102-90. That was when Snot Rocket would close the door on the New Yorkers, running up a back-breaking 14-1 jam over Bonnie Thunders that put the game out of reach at Kansas City 116, Gotham 91 with only enough time for one more jam. Gotham’s Cheap Skate was able to put up a 10-0 on that final jam when Jade Lightning went to the box, but it was too little, too late, and Kansas City knocked off the Heartland Havoc champions a mere hour into the Texas Shootout by 15, 116-101.

Posted in Bout Recaps, Gotham Girls Roller Derby, Interleague Bouts, Kansas City Roller Warriors, Tournaments | Leave a Comment »

Kansas City upsets Gotham, 116-101

Posted by Justice Feelgood Marshall on September 29, 2007

Don’t have time to write a full recap before the Tucson-Carolina bout starts, but the West just made a serious statement in the opening bout of the Texas Shootout, with #4 West seed Kansas City surprising the #1 seed from the East, Gotham. Gotham looked practically invincible at Heartland Havoc, but KCRW consistently frustrated their jammers with very impressive pack speed and re-engagement — by the second half, it was clear that a lot of the Gotham players were tiring from trying to keep up. Even though Kansas City’s lead was only about 10 points for the majority of the second half, they always seemed in control of the game. Snot Rocket and Xcelerator both had some fantastic jams — with about 4 minutes left in the bout, a 14-1 jam for Snot Rocket over Bonnie Thunders made the score 116-91 and sealed the victory for Kansas City.

Kansas City will be playing the winner of Tucson / Carolina at 11am on Sunday… and that game is coming up right about now, so I’m fixin’ to watch it.

Posted in Bout Recaps, Gotham Girls Roller Derby, Interleague Bouts, Kansas City Roller Warriors, Tournaments | Leave a Comment »

Texas Shootout Bout Preview: (East #1) Gotham vs. (West #4) Kansas City

Posted by Justice Feelgood Marshall on September 26, 2007

Gotham comes into the Texas Shootout opener riding one of the most impressive winning streaks in roller derby, appearing to have very little trouble dispatching the toughest competition in the East during Heartland Havoc. They notched the biggest point spread of the whole tournament in going 206-47 over Grand Raggidy, bounced the 4 seed Philly 139-81, shut down Detroit by a margin of 157-56, and, in the championship bout, handled a Windy City team who had previously upset both the 1 and 3 seeds, 134-71. They also have an advantage unique to the tournament — with Fisti Cuffs and Hard Anya on their team, both of whom were playing for Tucson in February, they have two players who have already faced KCRW in tournament play (Tucson defeated Kansas City 127-47 in the the Dust Devil semifinals).

While Kansas City has the toughest seeding for the West, they recently had a warmup bout against Minnesota and came away with a solid win, 112-84. It’s always tough to compare point differentials across different leagues, but that 28 point win was only a few more than Detroit’s 22 point win over Minnesota a month ago at Heartland Havoc … and with Gotham having taken down Detroit by a hundred points, it’d seem that Kansas City will have to put in a truly spectacular performance to advance past the first round of the Texas Shootout. That said, given KCRW’s thrilling upset victory over 4th-ranked Arizona Roller Derby at Dust Devil 2007, Gotham would be well advised to not look past them. (Update: Muffin of Duke City Derby reminds me in comments that Kansas City also took an August rematch against Arizona by the impressive score of 153-51 … all the more reason this match might have a different outcome than the seeding would imply.)

Players to keep an eye out for in this one: Gotham’s Beyonslay has established herself as one of the toughest blockers in the whole sport, while Beatrix Slaughter, Suzy Hotrod, Bonnie Thunders and Cheap Skate are a virtual Murderers’ Row of a jammer lineup, with not a weak point in the crew. On the Kansas City side, star jammer and speed demon Snot Rocket made a huge impression at Dust Devil 2007, managing to average 30 points a bout against some of the best defense in the game, including bouts against Arizona, Tucson and Texas. Fearlys is also trouble at the jammer line, team captain Bruz-Her lives up her name with intelligent and punishing blocking, and Muffin reports from the recent AZRD / KCRW game that jammer Xeclerator is a force to be reckoned with, putting up an amazing 66 points in just 6 jams. The winner of this one faces the winner of Tucson / Carolina Sunday at 11am.

80 Ginger Snap (captain) // 10 Kandy Kakes // 31 Hela Skelter // 2 Donna Matrix // 7 Anne Phetamean // 141 Hard Anya // 2cents Cheap Skate // 241 Fisti Cuffs // Top 40 Beyonslay // 55 Suzy Hotrod // 00 Ana Bollocks // 01 Rolletta Lynn // 99 Surly Temple // 340 Bonnie Thunders // 60 Brigitte Barhot // 201 Sweet Sherry Pie // 67 Raggedy Animal // 42 Beatrix Slaughter


244 Bruz-Her (captain) // 11 Jessika Rabid // 42 Red Ripper // 34 Xcelerator // 111 Annie Maul // 4 Snot Rocket // 911 Patti Wackin // 23 Xavia // XOXO Princess Slay-Ya // 19 Rita Ploy // 59 Archie Lee // 007 Dee Claw // 816 Jade Lightning // XX Dominant Jean // 7 Ami-Geggon // 999 Bad Omen // 12 Fearlys // 66 Snap Dragon // 13 Speed Razor // 1UP Missile Toes

Posted in Bout previews, Gotham Girls Roller Derby, Interleague Bouts, Kansas City Roller Warriors, Tournaments | 3 Comments »