See also: - Bay of Reckoning: Denver Roller Dolls, Rocky Mountain Rollergirls headed to WFTDA Playoffs - Denver's eleven best roller derby nicknames - Twenty best super heroes at Down and Derby's first birthday partyThe Oly Rollers have long been a dominant force in the West Region, and have now won the West Region playoffs in three of the last four years. The team rolled into this weekend's tournament with a roster stacked full of all-star skaters -- including several with Rocky Mountain Rollergirls roots -- and will be a favorite (along with New York's Gotham Girls, the defending 2011 WFTDA champs) when the action moves to Atlanta in November.
But 168-161 is awfully close, as roller derby scores go, and the teams traded the lead throughout Sunday's bout. A confusing call by the refs in the final minutes didn't help (see the full report at DerbyNewsNetwork.com for the blow-by-blow), but the real takeaway is a positive: the Denver Roller Dolls are headed for the championships for the first time in several years.
Not so for the Rocky Mountain Rollergirls, however: The 2010 champs lost to Oly in their first bout of the weekend and ended up in sixth place in the consolation rounds, well outside of the top-three cutoff mark.
WFTDA playoff rounds continue this weekend with the Sugarbush Showdown East Region playoffs, September 28-30 in Burlington, Vermont, and the following weekend, October 5-7, with the Landlocked Lace Up South Central Region playoffs in Lincoln, Nebraska. All of the tournament bouts, including the championships in November, are being webcast at www.WFTDA.tv.