D1A 5th: (5) Steel City Comes Back On (7) Houston, 202-185

D1A 5th: (5) Steel City Comes Back On (7) Houston, 202-185 Photo: Kit Ruff / ShutHerUp Photography

ASHEVILLE, NC–A tight opening 20 minutes looked to be giving way to another Asheville blow-out as Steel slipped into a 122-67 half-time deficit. But the Steel Hurtin’ dragged it back at the death to break the WFTDA playoff comeback record they set against Carolina in 2010, and secure fifth place with a 202-185 win.

DBC opened the bout with an achievement few had managed this weekend–lead over Steel’s Snot Rocket Science. She put three points on the board to make the start even sweeter as The Angie-Christ held snot for just about long enough.

Two Hurricane Heather points made it a one-point game, and then River Kyx effected a lead change before Snot Rocket Science got boxed on a multiplayer block as she briefly grabbed a team-mates shirt for a whip round the side of the pack. That ensured the lead evaporated and turned into an 16-point deficit for Steel City.

Syrenge had all sorts of problems with Snot and Bonecrusher in the pack and Hurricane Heather started the rally. Inevitably, Snot restored Steel’s early lead and all of Steel’s jammers built on it before DBC levelled The Crippler and Inga Knee’Her in one hit while Angie and Freight Train controlled Kyx for three DBC passes. That restored Houston’s lead–but at the expense of a whole host of blocker penalties.

A one-woman Houston pack could do nothing about the charging Heather as the jam started–but returning numbers limited her to three as the pack raced. That was enough for the lead to change hands–but next time out it changed yet again when a forearm call sent Snot to the box.

DBC used offensive support from Brandi Brown to make sure lead change 6 happened with 20 minutes gone. Freight Train was on a charge to extend the lead when she was knocked out by Athena and stepped back in in front a fraction of a second before the Steel blocker hit the floor.

But as soon as Steel had the lead again, Houston stole it back courtesy of Snot’s third box trip of the half–this time due to a backblock. That combined with a multiplayer block call on Heather in the penultimate jam of the period ensured that a back-and-forth period ended with Frieght Train pushing Houston into the biggest lead of the day: they led 122-67 at the half.

Snot picked up three points as the second half opened but picked up a cut at the call–and the lead was 70 after Syrenge and then Freight Train punished the error and doubled up on Steel City.

Bonecrusher and Ally Mckill pushed DBC over the apex to force a cut and let Heather put up a 15-0 before Steel handed Athena the star. She cut on her initial pass as she was erroneously called lead with DBC returning to play to restore the lead.

9 unanswered Steel points across two jams were followed by a 13-0 for Lecter as Bonecrusher played offense to get her out and defense to recycle DBC. Syrenge stopped the scoreless run as she traded points with Snot and kept the buffer over 50.

Inside the final quarter Snot cut the lead under 50 as Athena, Stark Raven and Ally McKil bullied Syrenge–then cut it under 30 when Syrenge was boxed on her scoring pass to make the Houston lead 168-144 with a 34-4 jam and a little over ten minutes to go.

Syrenge passed the star to Brandi Brown as she came out the box with Hurricane Heather destroying the Houston lead–and the lead was five with 9:26 to play. A low block on Frieght Train let Lector put up the ninth lead change of the day but the first since the first period. Snot took the lead into double digits before Frieght Train was released.

Single-digit Steel City jams meant the lead was 19 going into the final five. Freight Train broke the run with a 3-pointer of her own. DBC then busted out a spectacular spin-filled jam to make it a 6-point game before The Branimal made the lead two with the clock frozen at 2:01 by Steel’s second time-out of the game.

Both teams still had the ability to freeze the clock inside the final minutes. DBC got lead in the next jam–but picked up a major cut in the middle of her call-off as she tried to steal points on the apex with Snot hot on her heels. Houston used their review with 1:11 left to try and free DBC and keep their hopes of an upset alive.

They failed, and Lecter got lead with only Brandi Brown to beat–and made the game safe with Steel taking the win and fifth place 202-185.

Lex Talionis

Lex is the Content Director for Derby News Network.