DES MOINES, IA–The first semifinal was, appropriately, one of the highest-quality encounters so far. The intensity remained to the end despite Jet City holding a comfortable lead–and it was the Washington team that took the win 218-131.
Ivana Hercha did battle with Geneva Conviction for almost an entire lap before getting lead in the first jam, and she called it on her first pass seemingly not noticing that Sin City’s Molly Tov had been boxed on a cut.
Sierra Fist put up 16 unanswered points to make it 19-0 after two jams and three minutes. The Force botched an apex jump past Nasty Nikki Nightstick in jam three to hand Jet’s Whoa Nellie! a power jam. But Nellie released The Force with a cut of her own. The Force put up Jet’s first 15 points as she rapidly drove through the Sin City packs.
Terror Faceoff was beaten up and frustrated to the box by tag team hitting from Geneva Convinction and Shabamm. Stella Blue gave Sin City their first lead before getting a skating OOB penalty as she dodged a hit on her scoring pass. Eva Derci retook the lead thanks to some deliberately chaotic offence shattering the Sin City pack. Her 24-0 jam made it 55-33 with ten gone.
Dol Dozer sharply recycled a speeding Bust’N Aces with a hip check to the outside let Ivana extend the lead a little more. Jams seven, eight and nine saw Sin City’s first lead calls of the game as Jet City queued for the box–but Sin City’s pack decided those Jet blockers needed company and the team from Las Vegas couldn’t make a dent in the lead.
Nightstick punished Molly Tov as Jet’s lead hit 79-46 before the Sin Ciy pack forced a cut on Ivana. Molly only put up 8 in the duration of the power jam as she struggled with Jet’s strong low-speed face-to-face blocking. The Force sped through two passes next time out before spinning on her third, losing her footing and taking out a Jet City blocker at the ankles. She got a low block for that and Ivana punished the error against a static pack–with eight minutes left in the period, Jet led 99-56.
Dol Dozer was again the bane of Aces’ life as Fist lapped Sin City past the century mark. Molly Tov had an equipment malfunction as Terror Faceoff was boxed in the closing minutes and took over 30 seconds to effect a star pass to Geneva Conviction. Eva Derci was battered on by Bone Eta on a power jam as the half drew to a close to stop Jet entirely running away with the bout; they closed out the period leading 125-67.
Jammer musical chairs opened the second period–but Ivana got a second bite of the cherry when Cia WoodNwanna-Bia and Beelzababe combined to expertly force a second cut on Aces. Fist and Nellie took advantage of that cut and then another for Aces and the 43-point halftime lead was almost doubled in the opening five minutes of the period, as Jet led 155-77.
The lead hovered around 80 until The Force hit the box with Terror jamming for Jet. Terror brushed off some brutal hitting from Sin City’s blockers before Eva pushed the lead past 100 before The Force returned. The Force didn’t get any points on her return but did get a cheer for flattening Eva, forcing the call.
A forearm on Fist let Molly throw a few points up but Morticia Militia, Dozer and Beelzababe continued to slow Sin City’s scoring on the power jam as the Jet City jammers struggled with the likes of Bone Eta and Dairy Heir.
Despite Jet’s lead, the final few minutes were played at a higher intensity than almost any bout of the weekend so far. The Force’s footwork repeatedly brought cheers from the crowd, but didn’t bring in enough points to threaten Jet’s lead. A cut inside the final few minutes meant Sierra Fist could spend a few laps burning clock and waving to the crowd.
She let The Force get a few laps in without engaging as the clock expired–and Jet City finished 218-131 winners, progressing to the championship game and earning a trip to Milwaukee to play for the Division 2 championship in November.