The Santa Cruz Derby Girls Boardwalk Bombshells, currently ranked No. 42 in the WFDTA, beat Bay Area Derby Girls’ Team Gold, 133-103, at the Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium on Saturday.
The win marks the first home game for the Santa Cruz All-Star team this season and served as a warm-up for the squad before they head to playoffs in Cleveland, which begin Aug. 21. The Bombshells are seeded No. 1 in the bracket.
The Bombshells ended last season near the bottom of Division 1, an uneven season dropped them back into Division 2. Late in the season the Boardwalk Bombshells pulled out a much needed strong performance at the BrewHaHa, sweeping the tournament.
Unfortunately, Santa Cruz faced the London Rollergirls London Brawling and were eliminated from the playoffs in a blowout.
Though the game against London served as a great learning experience and provided Santa Cruz with the opportunity to compete against a high-ranked team, the loss ended up costing it crucial rankings points that would have buoyed it into Division 1.
Santa Cruz took early control of Saturday’s game, earning four lead calls in a row and holding Bay Area scoreless.
Team Gold responded with their first lead call and took surged ahead past the Bombshells. After a run of blocker penalties and a jammer penalty against Bay Area, Queen Litigious retook the lead for Santa Cruz.
As penalties piled up against the Bombshells, Team Gold tied the score briefly before the Bombshells reclaimed control later in the bout. Bay Area struggled to keep their jammers out of the box into the second quarter. Team Gold called a timeout after a series of costly penalties to make some lineup adjustments, which proved effective in limiting the Bombshells scoring passes during the power jam.
The second half featured a rotating door to the penalty box for both teams.
Team Gold started the second half by giving up a power jam but Santa Cruz failed to take advantage. Instead, the Bombshells sent their jammer to the box.
Santa Cruz built its lead slowly, making the most of the frequent pack advantages thanks to Bay Area’s blocker penalties. Just as Santa Cruz began to pull away, a double jammer penalty assessed after a completed star pass sent the Bombshells jammer to the box for a full minute.
During this extended power jam, Team Gold was able to close the score within 7 points, however, once again Team Gold ended with their jammer in the box.
In the last quarter, Santa Cruz cleaned up its act and was able to keep all jammers on the track en route to victory.
**Article by Kristen Garfield as printed in the Santa Cruz Sentinel**
**Photo Credit: Lauren Macadaeg ©2015**