2010 South Central Region Playoffs Preview

2010 South Central Region Playoffs Preview Texas comes into the tournament as the prohibitive favorite. They went all the way to the championship game of Nationals last year but lost to Oly. Photo: Axle Adams.

Watch whistle to whistle coverage of the 2010 WFTDA South Central Region playoffs right here on DNN. Coverage presented by Fast Girl Skates.

Opening Round: 7SC Houston vs. 10SC Memphis
9am Central, Friday, October 8

The tournament kicks off with the first-ever sanctioned meeting between Houston and Memphis.

Last year, Houston took third in the South Central tournament and went to the championship tournament in Philadelphia, but 2010 has been a hard road for them. Overall they are 3-7 on the year, with those wins all coming against teams that finished out of the South Central top ten — one win over Dixie and two wins over Assassination City. When they’ve gone against teams that qualified for this tournament, it has not gone well — Dallas has beaten Houston three times by an average of 90 points, and Tampa Bay edged them out by 7 points in a March meeting.

Some of Houston’s troubles have come as a result of serious roster turnover since 2009. Last year’s multiple-threat ace Death By Chocolate is the most notable subtraction from the crew that went to last year’s Nationals, but there’s a long list of other major factors who are also not on Houston’s tournament roster: Miss Lead, DeMentia, Speed-O, Goldie Bloxx and Nawty Dread Knocks. Veteran The Prosecutor is still with the league but is recovering from back surgery and is not currently playing. Mistilla will likely be shouldering a lot of track duties as one of the big names still with the team.

This is Memphis’ second year in a row entering the South Central tournament as the 10th seed; last year, they beat out West Texas in the 9th place game to increase their standing by one, but the entrance of Hard Knox has brought them back down again. They have played Hard Knox in three fairly close games this year, winning a March match but losing in June and July. The March win is the only bout they’ve won against tournament-level competition this year; overall, their 4-5 record includes blowout losses to Nashville (97 points in June) and out-of-region opponents Arch Rival (80 points) and Naptown (116 points).

In last year’s tournament, Lil Cinner established herself as a very tough and resilient jammer; Memphis has lost one of their standout blockers in Bloody Elle this year, who now skates with the Chicago Outfit.

The winner of this one gets to play 2 seed Atlanta in the quarterfinal round at 6pm on Friday; although Houston beat Atlanta in a May 2009 game, both teams are looking much different this year and a Houston win there would be a significant upset. Memphis lost badly to Atlanta in a consolation-round bout at last year’s SC tournament, 190-77.

1X Rebel Ann // 5 Candy Codine // 12 Cynder Hellyeah // 16 Mistilla // 21 Jekyll & Heidi // 26 Brand-aid // 30 Wicked Sweet // 37 Carmen Geddit // 55 Copperhead // 65 Toni Smasheries // 66 Hot Rod Bettie // 201 Dutch Destroyer // 237 Shaw Shank // 308 Sexy Sniper // 410 Babyface Assassin // 866 Becky Booty // 1031 Tamityville Horror // 9021 Beverly Kills // D0A b0bituary

8HER Black N Blue // 9MM Demi Automatic // 18 Robin N Stealin // 19 Midnight Choker // 23 Chica Bandita // 24 Lil Cinner // 28 Tenacious B // 74 Bad Juju // 79 Cat Claus // 138 Lily the Kid // 213 Ragin Caucasian // 314 Rolls Royce // 430 Hood Ratt // 500 Pain Dilla // 512 Roller Texas Ranger // 821 Lena Deadtrick // 911 Brooken Bones // 1975 La Sucia

Opening Round: 8SC No Coast vs. 9SC Hard Knox
11am Central, Friday, October 8

Hard Knox gets their first taste of WFTDA tournament play when they they take on tournament hosts No Coast in the second opening-round bout.

No Coast is a hard team to figure right now, as their record looks good at a glance — 6-2 without a loss since March — but the quality of their opposition has not been very high. Omaha is the only team they’ve taken down that is tournament-level; other victims Dixie, Sioux Falls, West Texas, Green Country and Pikes Peak all finished out of the top ten in their respective regions. No Coast was solidly beaten by Atlanta back in March, but they did give Tampa Bay a run for their money in a 126-110 loss, also in March. Tampa Bay’s record seems to suggest they’ve upped their game since then, but No Coast’s lack of highly ranked opponents makes it difficult to assess whether they’ve been improving at the same rate. If they have, they have the potential to increase their standing coming out of this one.

The Bone Setter, ThickaThanAhSnicka and Kelly Ripa-Nipalov were standout players in last year’s tournament, where No Coast came in as the 9 seed but finished in 8th place with the help of an opening-round upset of West Texas.

Hard Knox has had a fairly active season at 7-4 and earned their first appearance in a WFTDA regional tournament with the help of a June defeat of Memphis; they also beat them in a July rematch by just 2 points, 109-107. Their strength of schedule has been a little more varied than No Coast’s, as they’ve taken on three of the top five in the region — though they’ve lost badly each time, going down to Nashville (109 points), Atlanta (101 points) and Dallas (93 points).

The winner here will have a very tough time continuing to advance, as they’ll go up against top seed Texas in the final Friday bout.

0 Kelly Ripa-Nipalov // 11 Velvet Crush // 13 Miss Anthropy // 15 Princess Lay-Ya Flat // 101 Leticia Lesson // 206 The Bone Setter // 2000 Hugs // 32 Flash Gloria // 33 Lt SlamHer // 37 Brooke N. Hearts // 40 Nurse FlatlineHer // 45 Sylvia Bullet // 402 ThickaThanAhSnicka // 505 Kobra Kai // 666 Wikked Wayz // 699 Champ Paine // 76 Hip-notik // 726 Dropkick Muffy // P8 Juana Whipin’ // Anna Wrexx-It

2 Sushi Roll // 9 Kell’s Inferno // 13 Cut N Dye // 27 Barbara Bushwhacker // 29 Unsweet T // 39 Goblynn // 42 Hella Kitty // 44 Crash Cymbal // 88 Brave Lil Roast-Her // 111 Tank Her A!! // 131 Trace…of Death // 138 Battle Ready Betty // 413 Drop Dead… Gorgeous // 462 Evil Lucia // 513 Kool-Aid // 667 Miss Murder // 865 Knox Villain // 911 Ima Quarantine U // 1325 Wrecking Ball // 5540 Brusey Quatro

Quarterfinal: 4SC Dallas vs. 5SC Nashville
1pm Central, Friday, October 8

Last year, Dallas came within a last jam of a trip to Nationals before losing a dramatic third-place game to Houston. Early this year, it looked like the battle for third place in this year’s South Central was likely to come down to a battle between Dallas, Atlanta and Nashville — however, Atlanta has started to put some separation between themselves and these two teams, while Tampa Bay is creeping on them from behind. Both teams have had some disappointing results recently, and only one will get a chance to bounce back this weekend.

Dallas had an extremely active year with 19 games and a 12-7 record (including playing 5 games in two days at March’s Clover Cup tourney). One of the major storylines of their season has been an ongoing and occasionally violent rivalry with Tampa Bay — they’ve faced them 4 times this year, with a scuffle breaking out in an April meeting. Dallas won the first three meetings, but the most recent one in July saw Tampa Bay finally pull out a narrow win at 104-101. That game came too late to affect the seeding for this tournament, though. Notably, Dallas did get a win over Championships-bound Minnesota in late July, although it seems that Minnesota has significantly picked up their game since then.

Dallas has a pretty impressive variety of talent on their team, with a lanky and very effective positional pivot in Harazzis Mine, some extremely hard hitters in Keltic Kamikaze, The Shocker and Barooski, and a particularly dangerous combination of speed, strength and agility in jammer Miley Virus. Hot 4 Teacher, Anita Riot and Roxie La Roo are also very solid jammers for this team.

Nashville comes into this bout with something to prove. They kicked off their 2010 season with a 35-point win over tough Atlanta, and then went on to build a 6 game winning streak — but the loss of some major players caused them to stall out about mid-year. Sexy Slaydie and Fully Addomatic were both significant losses and were sorely missed when Nashville went to ECE and struggled a bit in a narrow 31-point win over DC and then went on to lose to North Star by almost the same amount. Although they got post-ECE wins over Ft. Wayne and Tallahassee, they were solidly beaten when they played tournament-level competition. Providence knocked them out in a 171-82 rout in July and Steel City sent them home with a 182-69 defeat in August.

The winner here will almost certainly face Texas in the semifinal, and will almost certainly go from that game into the third-place bout. Last year, Nashville had the bad luck of pulling the 6 seed, meaning they had to face Texas in their first bout — and that 207-23 rout by Texas included the only scoreless half in WFTDA tournament play history when Texas shut them out for a full 30 minutes in a 127-0 first half. Dallas has faced Texas more recently, with a similar result — Texas smoked them 209-35 in August.

0 Harazzis Mine // 1 Mary Ate Ashley // 3 Keltic Kamikaze // 6 Hollywood Hit’cha // 7 Lucky Lou // 13 Brandi Danger // 15 Barooski // 21 The Shocker // 28 Miley Virus // 100 Hot 4 Teacher // 138 Anita Riot // 180 Roll’er Over // 210 Rink Panther // 241 Lickity Splittail // 530 Juicy J // 666 Weapon X // 717 Olive Illegal // 911 Mona Bruis’R // Jackie Lation // K9 Roxie La Roo

5 5 Scar Jeneral // 5FT3 Lady Fury // 10 Union Jack-U-Up // 11 Jennifer Smith // 13 LeeAnn Crimes // 13EE Susan // 15 E$$$ // 32 Jenny the Jet Rodriguez // 36DD Maulin Monroe // 99 Slammylou Harris // 141 Trisha Torment // 308 Britches N’ Hose // 318 Four Leaf Roller // 529 Whip Lashes // 808 Jersey Jackhammer // 1080 Dramatic Pyrony // 1970 Slayla // 5280 Luscious Loosie // C4A Showstopper // M60 Ramb0 Samb0

Quarterfinal: 3SC Kansas City vs. 6SC Tampa Bay
3pm Central, Friday, October 8

These two teams met in the quarterfinals of last year’s tournament, where Kansas City dispensed with the younger team 198-77. Tampa Bay has moved one up the official regional rankings since then and Kansas City has slipped one down. While it’s not inconceivable that Tampa Bay could lay an upset on the 2007 WFTDA champions in this match, it’d be a tall order.

Tampa Bay’s win-loss record doesn’t look too hot right now at 4-9, but they have been pursuing a more challenging strength of schedule than the teams in the opening-round action. Of their 13 opponents, only 2 did not qualify for WFTDA regional tournament action this year. They’ve been blown out twice this year, once by Atlanta and once by Montreal, but they also have shown improvement by finally beating Dallas in the fourth of four 2010 meetings between the teams. Tampa Bay has a particularly fun-to-watch set of primary jammers in Sixgun Susie and Little A, with Lunch Lady, Ram ‘Em Noodle, Flirtin W Disaster and Rock C in jammer support roles — Bash’em Up Barbie is a big hitter in the pack but is also able to be effective with the jam star when needed.

Kansas City had a rough start to their season when they almost lost to Omaha and then got beaten by Atlanta 124-113 in May; that loss dropped them out of the second-place slot in the South Central that they’d held since the creation of the region. The mid-year return of early derby star Kelley Young (previously known as Snot Rocket) has been a boon to KC’s fortunes since then, as she helped out significantly in a respectable loss to Championships-bound Charm City in June, 220-158. They’ve also had a good out-of-region result in a 40-point win against Cincinnati, who just missed the Championships this year. Overall KC is 5-5 on the year, having alternated a win with a loss all year long.

Though they do have Young back, they’ve also lost one of their longtime effective veterans in Jessika Rabid, currently retired. KC will face a roster issue of a different sort on Sunday — Eclipse, Patti Wackin and Dominant Jean will be with the team on Friday and Saturday but unavailable for the last day’s action. If Kansas City defeats Tampa Bay on Friday, that makes their semifinal matchup on Saturday doubly important. A win against likely opponent Atlanta would guarantee them a Championships invite regardless of what happens on Sunday. If they lose that semifinal, they’ll have to go into the third place game missing three critical blockers with a trip to the Championships on the line.

D13 Dementia // 0 Eclipse // 4 Kelley Young // 8 Extremely Frank // 11 Jessika Rabid // 20 Dominant Jean // 22 Ruth Canal // 26 Bella Fire // 30 Hall Balls // 34 Case Closed // 42 Red Ripper // 44 Damsel of D’Tension // 69 Track Rat // 84 Tuff Noogies // 111 Annie Maul // 244 Bruz-Her // 816 Jade Lightning // 911 Patti Wackin // 999 Bad Omen // 2012 Evolution

6 Wild Cherri // 25 Frieda Killigan // 27 Kitty Danger // 29 Ram ‘Em Noodle // 50 Ft Rojo Grande // 78 Bettie Kruger // 80D Leia Flat // 90 Little A // 211 Eliza Lot // 212 Lunch Lady // 216 Anita Bopabitch // 276 Sixgun Susie // 278 Rock-C // 512 Sasha Haughtbich // 613 Flirtin W. Disaster // 666 Punkin // 901 Muse of Bruise // 999 Spank Sinatra // 1014 Ninja Monkey // 1959 Bash’em Up Barbie

Quarterfinal: 2SC Atlanta vs. 7SC Houston or 10SC Memphis
5pm Central, Friday, October 8

Atlanta has a lot of reason to believe that this could be the first year for them to make it out of their regional tournament and into the championship. They’ve built a very impressive 11-3 record, with two of those losses fairly narrow — 35 points to Nashville in February and a last-jam 126-117 loss to Cincinnati in June. The only team to put a significant margin between them was non-WFTDA San Diego, who routed them 153-61 in what was the second game of a doubleheader for Atlanta.

Meanwhile, there are some quality wins in Atlanta’s 11. Most memorably, in May they became the first South Central team other than Texas to defeat Kansas CIty, and took over Kansas City’s 2 slot. They also defeated Dallas twice, getting revenge for Dallas ejecting them from the advancement rounds at last year’s South Central tournament. Additionally, they took down the improving Carolina in a 30 point game in August.

Still, though, while their chances are better than they have ever been before, a top-three finish is far from assured. They will probably face Kansas City again in what has the potential to be the game of the weekend — the last Atlanta / Kansas City game was decided by just 13 points for Atlanta, and this time Kansas City has a game-changing skater in Kelley Young to add to the mix. With the teams ranked back to back in the official WFTDA rankings and extremely close to one another in the unofficial DNN rankings (Kansas City at #18 and Atlanta at #20 in the nation), that one seems like a tossup.

If Atlanta can’t punch their ticket on Saturday with a win in the semifinal, they would seem to have an easier time against Dallas or Nashville in the third-place bout — but both the last Dallas / Atlanta and Nashville / Atlanta games were determined by a couple of jams’ worth of points. Atlanta is pretty much a lock to finish between 2nd and 4th this weekend, but the difference between 3rd and 4th is enormous in the current WFTDA tournament structure.

0M Thunder Enlightenin // 1LB The Merchant of Menace //12 AM Rebel Yellow //1973 Alassin Sane // 2BFC Canna Whoopass // 2L8 Wheelin Jennings // 2LBU Queen Loseyateefa // 3 Shannihilator // 5 Killy Wabbit // 8 Deathskull // 49 Sissy Splaysek // 99 Nora Gretz // 410 Chopper Bleed // 1428 Demi Gore // 1650 InSINerator // 1905 Regreta Garbo // 1932 Belle of the Brawl // 8979 Switchblade Siouxsie // B1 Juju // B52 Amelia Scareheart

Quarterfinal: 1SC Texas vs. 8SC No Coast or 9SC Hard Knox
7pm Central, Friday, October 8

The good news for the rest of the South Central teams in this tournament is that Texas hasn’t been having a very successful year for the only time in league history. Their 2010 record of 4-6 marks the only time the sport’s founders have had a losing record on a year. The bad news for the South Central teams, though, is that Texas is as dominant as ever within their South Central region.

With the exception of Kansas City, no team in the South Central region has ever come within 100 points of Texas — and the last time they met in the championship bout of 2009′s tournament, Texas waltzed to an 83 point win. While this tournament season has already demonstrated that upsets are always within the realm of possibility, Texas seems the safest top seed of all four regions.

It seems extremely unlikely that either of Texas’ potential quarterfinal opponents will present much challenge for them, and their potential semifinal opponents Dallas and Nashville both have records of futility against them — Dallas has lost to Texas three times already this year by an average of 144 points, and Nashville couldn’t score a single first-half point against Texas when they met in last year’s quarterfinal, down 127-0 at halftime on their way to a 207-23 shellacking. When Dallas faced Texas in last year’s semifinal, Dallas conceded from the start by choosing to save their strongest players for the third-place bout, ending in a 288-19 no-contest. Texas is very likely to face either Atlanta or Kansas City in the championship bout.

While Texas has seen some turnover since their second-place finish at the 2009 WFTDA Nationals, losing Rice Rocket, Bullet Tooth Tracy and Desi Cration to retirement, they have picked up a big transfer this year in Sarah Hipel (ex-Detroit) and have a standout young player in Luce Bandit, who cut her teeth in Tucson’s junior derby program and played for Tucson’s all-stars last year before moving to Austin and joining Texas.

2 Shortcut // 3 Olivia Shootin’ John // 9 Babe Ruthless // 11 Misti Molotov // 18 Shank // 19 Molotov M. Pale // 21 Rita Menweep // 40 Bloody Mary // 33 Luce Bandit // 52 Ruby Wring // 56 Lucille Brawl // 66 Devil Grrl // 76 Curvette // 86 The Killa’ Sal Monella // 90 Acute Angel // 100 Crackerjack // 333 Dilla // 360 The Angie-Christ // 989 Sarah Hipel // 1889 Belle Starr