Franky Panky 2013’s fifth bout – New Jax City Rollers against Tallahassee’s Capital Punishment was the first bout of the tournament to really carry any weight of relevancy with it. Sure Tally vs Philly had a powerhouse, WFTDA team ranked 12th in the country skating in it, but Jacksonville and Tallahassee are FL cities. Sure, half the fun of Franky Panky is seeing teams you normally wouldn’t have the chance to. (My borderline obsession with the Ithaca League of Women Rollers’ name being a clear example of this.) But the other half of Franky Panky’s greatness comes from figuring out the pecking order amongst the FL derby teams. With I believe five on the list (Tampa, Tallahassee, New Jax, Gold Coast, and Fort Myers), and who knows how many waiting in the wings, it’s good to take a step back and figure out who the best is within the state. And with a definitive 410-64 win over Tallahassee, Jacksonville was clearly staking out a spot at the top.
Jacksonville wasted no time in asserting their themselves. Crash Register blazing around the track for lead before Tallahassee’s La Voodoo could make it through the pack (4-2). Jamsterella completing her first apex jump next because, well, she could (16-6). Just warming up, Jamsterella then jammed again to correct a possible track etiquette faux pas about jumping the apex before lapping the opposing jammer (27-6).
It should be noted here that Philly and Jacksonville were both teams who had dominating wins thus far in Franky Panky, and also both had sparkly helmets. Begging the question of whether Sox Populi was so distracted by Jax’s glistening, golden headgear that she couldn’t get passed Deviant Behavior and hA hA hA hazily!? We’ll never know for sure, unless Sox wants to comment below, but Jax’s helmets were clearly a big enough distraction for me (34-8).
As frequently happens during grossly lopsided bouts, penalties started adding up for Tallahassee. Skaters get frustrated, their heads leave the game, and they soon end up in a worse position than they started off in. This trend became apparent when La Voodoo and Frozen Tundra fouled out, leaving the always dangerous Miley Virus skating practically unopposed (79-10).
Not to misrepresent New Jax’s dominance, because defensively they were on-point too. Jamsterella and Kat Von Skratchereyezout switching it up by skating backwards to swing Deviant Behavior around and shut Tally down (83-10). While the rest of Jacksonville just pounding down on Capital Punishment (102-10).
Though it runs counter to the current “passive offense” philosophy of abandoning your jammer to fend for themselves, but Tallahassee began regaining ground once their blockers started assisting their jammers (156-28). Capital Punishment’s blockers recognizing that Wargasm was losing her powerjam to beating courtesy of Fancy Schmancy, and making strides to free her helped them considerably as the half ended (165-43).
[Enter an hour long power outage here, one where sock derby was born. This recap’s second half comes to you courtesy of Stella Knockout and Trip McNeely who found me wandering around parking lots and informed me that the game was back on.]
Even with a better way to get their jammer through New Jax’s packs, Tallahassee was still hindered by penalties. The extended break recharging New Jax’s defense, who effectively shut down Tally’s offense. Meanwhile, Jamsterella gave the crowd a lesson on how she made Team U.S.A. First with another apex jump (227-57), followed by five or six grand slams (264-57), before skating through the pack with one leg extended in the air before making yet another apex jump (356-60). As if the track was nothing but some insane jammer obstacle course to run drills on.
And your eyes aren’t deceiving you either, Jacksonville did score 92 points in the time it took Tallahassee to bring in three. Of course, Jamsterella wasn’t doing all the work, nor all the scoring, as Ms. Jax’Em remained as dangerous as she was against Queen City. She was just using two skates to do so.
Ms. Jax’Em then earning my eternal gratitude for finally ending a bout at 410-64 that had already stretched on an hour (at least) too long. Maybe I’m wrong, but if there’s any dramatic tension left in a bout once there’s a 300 point lead, I’m pretty sure such tension is gone at 350 points. (I’ve also heard from skaters playing in such bouts that even they get bored.) All this made the decision by one of the teams to call a time-out right before the game clock hit zero nonsensical. I understand that point margins do factor into the rankings, but when you’re talking in terms of hundreds of points, ten or fifteen isn’t going to change anything.