Red Bellied Black Hearts V Surly Griffins - 8 September

Stake were high for both teams in the season's fourth game, as securing a spot in the 1st place Grand Final playoff was still up for grabs. Both the Surly Griffins and the Red Bellied Black Hearts had last played, and lost to, the Black n Blue Belles, meaning each aspired to victory. The Black Hearts relied upon the powerful blocking efforts of Bohemeth Rhapsody, Muthar Furquar, Bambi von Smash’er, Jaxhammer and Mimi Metalstorm, relying primarily upon Bebe Aggressive, Fauna Cat, and impressive newcomer LegoLass to jam. The Surly Griffins’ determined play, with Amykazeee, Aunty Aggro, AnneThrax, and Louiville Slugga doing ruthless work blocking and Dread Herring, Ginger Nutcase, and Rainbow Spite giving some memorable jams, ultimately saw the Red Bellied Black Hearts lose with a score line of 151-124.

The Griffs led from the start (10-0 after the first four jams), eventually working their way up to 24-6 with their recurring lead jammer status which consistently dashed Black Hearts’ hopes of further scoring. Things looked set to change, however, when Lego Lass enjoyed a 15-point jam for the Black Hearts while Bohemeth Rhapsody worked to ruthlessly wipe out Harlot, bringing the score to 24-21. A later jam by Team Australia veteran Bambi von Smash’er saw her take advantage of a ‘no-pack’ knee start and earn a grand slam (scoring against Dread Herring who remained trapped in the pack), going on to give the game its first lead change: 38-32 to the Black Hearts. Conservative play by the Griff jammers (repeatedly 'hitting it and quitting it' and therefore accruing minor points before the Black Heart jammers could score) and a power jam by Ginger Nutcase then saw this lead change again in their favour, and continue until half-time: 63-55.

The second half saw further power jam opportunities for the Griffs maximised due to Black Heart jammers’ bin time.  Despite impressive strength and footwork by Fauna Cat and Bebe Aggressive in particular, the score margin widened to 107-79.  Some nimble play by Black Heart jammers (including a spectacular 25-point jam by Bambi von Smash’er), was unsuccessful in bridging the gap, due to the cohesion of the Griffins’ pack as well as some more dominant jamming from Rainbow Spite. The final jam saw Lego Lass line up against Rainbow Spite and take lead, scoring a grand slam while Spite was hostage in the pack. Time was called with a score of 151-127 to the Griffs.

Written by Freudian Slit
Images by Steven Craddock