Weekend Preview: 6/29/2012
After last weekend's frenetic activity, there's a significant lull in WFTDA derby action this time around, with no games featuring two top-25 teams -- however, there are two key MRDA matchups that could have ripple effects on MRDA Championships invites.
WFTDA / MRDA
Sacred City @ (2) Rose City -- Sacred City currently sits at 7 in the West region, but there is very likely to be significant shuffling in the 7-10 slots when the playoff rankings are released in about a month. Sacred might actually benefit a bit from the considerable rankings disparity here; all history predicts a very lopsided win for Rose City, so just staying within shouting distance might be a perception win for Sacred.
Sac City @ (12) Oly -- Sacramento's other derby league just became a full WFTDA member at the beginning of June, and celebrate by taking on one of the winningest teams in the history of the sport for their first sanctioned bout. Although this seems very likely to be a very big win for Oly, Sac City has actually put up a few decent results this year that suggest they'll probably land in the mid-teens of the West rankings when they debut next month.
Madison @ No Coast -- June was a pretty good month for Madison, who had been struggling through a very rough 1-14 patch since the beginning of 2011; they got big wins over Paper Valley (156 points) and North Star (138 points). On paper, No Coast looks a lot better at 9-3 over 2012, but they've also had a considerably less challenging strength of schedule; of their four games against playoff-level teams, they've lost 3 of them.
Tallahassee @ Hard Knox; Jacksonville @ Memphis -- Although the visitors 9SC Jacksonville and 10SC Tallahassee are considerable favorites in both bouts here (Hard Knox is at 15SC while Memphis is 16SC), these contests are arguably must-win games for Jacksonville and Tallahassee as they try to hang on to their slots against oncoming challenges from 11SC Duke City and unranked Mid-Iowa and Blue Ridge.
(MRDA 8) Dallas Deception @ (MRDA 5) St. Louis GateKeepers -- This MRDA matchup is a key one for the Dallas Deception, who are a bit of a question mark with only one game so far in 2012 (a 321-73 blowout of Kansas City's Cowtown Butchers). This year, the MRDA championship tournament expands to 8 teams, leaving Dallas right on the bubble with the #9 Twin Cities Terrors breathing down their backs. St. Louis seems likely to be a tough challenge, as they came within one extraordinarily controversial jam of knocking off the current #3 New York Shock Exchange at Spring Roll in May. An undercard features the St. Louis B-Keepers taking on the Chicago Bruise Brothers in the CBB's second bout -- they were routed 187-39 by non-MRDA Green Bay Smackers on June 9.
(MRDA 10) Mass Maelstrom @ (MRDA 14) Harm City Homicide -- Lancaster, MA's Mass Maelstrom has quietly been having a pretty good year and became ranked for the first time in the MRDA's most recent rankings release -- they've got a 5-2 record overall and came within 33 points of current MRDA 7 Race City at Spring Roll, suggesting they're a dark horse for breaking the top 8 in time for this year's MRDA championships. Homicide, on the other hand, has had a tough run of it so far this year, opening 0-4 with a considerable upset at the hands of then-unranked Rock City Riot during Spring Roll. HCH did score a rankings upset of their own two weeks ago, when they got their first win in 11 months over current MRDA 13 Connecticut Death Quads.
Ruckus in the Rust Belt
8 teams descend on Youngstown, Ohio for a one-day, seven-game elimination tournament hosted by Little Steel. Top seed Steel City (18 DNN, 4E WFTDA) leads a pack that includes 13E Queen City, 16NC Burning River, 24NC NEO, 26NC Hammer City, and unranked NC teams Glass City, Black and Bluegrass and Little Steel (in Little Steel's first action as a full WFTDA member). Bracket here.
General WFTDA Action
East: 29E Hudson Valley, fresh off their first-ever WFTDA sanctioned win (over Harrisburg at last weekend's ECDX), tries to keep moving up against 20E Long Island.
North Central:: 29NC CoMo (Columbia, MO) hosts unranked Southern Illinois -- So Ill picked up their first WFTDA win earlier this month with a 15-point win over 27NC Rockford, while CoMo is 0-3 on the year.
South Central:: In inter-regional action, 26E Charlotte ventures into the South Central to take on unranked Tragic City (Birmingham, AL) and 23SC Dixie.