D2 Playoffs: Brandywine Takes 1st Place in a Wild Wichita Tournament
The Brandywine Belligerents will ride into D2 Champs in Portland as a #1 seed after topping upstarts Blue Ridge 146–123 to close the Wichita WFTDA Playoff Tournament. The tournament was full of drama and upsets, with Blue Ridge making that 1st place match up by upsetting 2 seed Houston and 3 seed Nashville. Brandywine was a bridge too far for them though.
With the score 68–63 at half for Brandywine, fans saw a see-saw battle with neither team being able to establish pace or momentum enough to pull away. Lead jam % favoured Brandywine by a slim margin — 48 to 44 — but Brandywine took 1 more jammer penalty and spent 6 more minutes in the box than Blue Ridge.
Blue Ridge’s defense was solid, but struggled to transition to offense against this Brandywine squad — especially on powerjams. They were also frustrating their own jammers with lack of track awareness getting caught in holes their jammers needed.
Brandywine’s aggressive and solid defense was also able to minimize Tournament MVP — and the Tournament’s lead scorer — Dr. Octopushy limiting her to just 2 leads on 8 jams and 25 points in that first half. Deeper down in the Blue Ridge rotation, Hurrycane Jackie kept her team in the bout going 4 for 4 on leads in that 1st half and pulling in 15 points.
The game opened up in Jam 4 and 5 in the 2nd half as Brandywine answered a small Blue Ridge run with a 26–0 run themselves. The teams would go back and forth in the 2nd half, but that run was the difference maker.
Brandywine’s lock down power jam defense was the highlight in the game, at least twice giving up zero points and forcing a Blue Ridge jammer into a penalty.
For Blue Ridge, their inability to give coherent offense on those jams were a huge missed opportunity throughout the bout. Blue Ridge will have time to work on this though before they hit Champs.
Overall, the physical back and forth match up was a great cap to an amazing first weekend of 2016 WFTDA Playoffs. If you haven’t gotten a full Playoffs pass yet, you should at wftda.tv.
Let’s do this all again next weekend! Congratulations to Brandywine and Blue Ridge for their well deserved invites to Division 2 Champs in Portland!