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#13 Charm City Shuts Down #15 Providence, 131-62

FEASTERVILLE, PA -- #15th-ranked Providence came into this Sunday game on an emotional high after scoring the biggest comeback of the ECE with a 30-point rally against #22 Atlanta that gave them a 94-91 victory, but #13 Charm City came into it with the confidence of having dominated #24 Houston in a 214-62 rout. In a bout where the penalty box quickly became a major factor and remained that way, Providence managed to stay with the Baltimore girls for one half, but the second half was all Charm City, and the Baltimore crew won their 6th bout in a row.

Charm City jumped out to an 8-0 lead on the opening jam as Providence jammer Hysterica got bottled up between Charm's Dolly Rocket and Holly Go Hardly while their jammer Pistol Whip had an easier path through the pack. The next jam would be the beginning of the penalty avalanche, though, as both jammers went to the box along with a Charm City blocker. Charm left Dolly Rocket and Joy Collision to form a two-girl pack for Lady Quebeaum jamming, and their impressive teamwork led to a double grand slam for Quebeaum, staking Charm City to a 18-0 lead after three jams.

The following 10 minutes or so, though, became a test of Charm City's defense, as their jammers kept finding themselves sent to the penalty box -- over the next five jams, Charm jammers were sent to the box during four of them. Fortunately for Charm, the blockers were up to the task.

The first frame of the sequence went 4-3 for Providence's Jetta Von Diesel after Charm jammer Psycho78 went to the box, giving the Rhode Island crew their first points of the bout, but Charm blockers Dolly Rocket and Reckless Ndangerment did yeoman's service in stifling PRD's Hysterica on the next jam. Charm City's Pistol Whip cut track on her opening pass and had to do a minute of time, but when she got out Dolly and Reckless were still hammering Hysterica, and it would take nearly the full two minutes for Hysterica to finally get lead and call off the jam just before Pistol could score. The next couple of jams would go similarly, as Providence jammers were forced to call jams with 0 points just to keep their opponents from scoring after busting out of the penalty box.

Both team's blockers were also having plenty of trouble with the penalty box, which made many jams comically lopsided or poorly attended -- in jam 11, Charm City blocker Mibbs Breakin' Ribs found herself all alone to start the jam against a full Providence crew, as overlapping penalty time created a party in the penalty box. That led to Providence's biggest success of the half, a 6-0 for Hysterica over Flo Shizzle that moved the score to 32-18 with about 7 minutes to play.

The half ended with another flurry of jammer penalties for Charm City -- in the final five jams, Charm was without a jammer in four of them. Fittingly, the half ended on a 0-0 jam, with Charm City's jammer Joy Collision in the box and Providence's jammer Jetta Von Diesel skating around to join her. The score after a messy first half was 42-27 for Charm City.

The second 30 minutes were much more lopsided in favor of Charm, who brought out a startling defensive performance reminiscent of their first half against Houston the previous day. The score got stuck at 55-31 after the first couple of jams, but after three 0-0 jams in a row, Charm City's blockers took over. They excelled at holding the opposing jammer in the pack for so long that the Providence blockers often missed the lap approach of the Charm jammers, leading to goose eggs on the Providence side of the scoreboard and multiple grand slams for Baltimore.

From the half's third jam to the 13th, Providence only got on the board once, and Charm went on a thundering 65-8 run. The killer sequence would occur in the middle of the half: with Providence jammer Cleo Patronize stuck in the increasingly popular penalty box during three out of four jams, Pistol Whip delivered a 14-0, Joy Collision added an identical 14-0 two jams later, and Lady Quebeaum immediately followed with a 15-0. That moved the score from a manageable 64-31 to a blowout 111-39 with 13 minutes to play.

Providence did manage to make up a lot of ground on the bout's final two scoring jams, as Charm City jammers once again set up shop in the penalty box and the vaunted CCRG defense finally lost its touch, allowing two 10-0 jams in a row and letting Providence move the scoreboard to 131-62.

The last jam would end, appropriately enough, with no scoring, as Charm's jammer Lady Quebeaum started the jam in the penalty box and Providence's jammer Cleo Patronize ended it in the same place.

Photos: Kerry McClain