By: John “Fragglepuss” Evans
The WFTDA rankings are out! These rankings will work as league placement in the playoffs next month. There has been considerable movement within the top 10, including some surprises. Without further ado, let’s review this year’s official top 10 in the West!
#1 Rose City Rollers Rose will enter as the league to beat in this year’s playoffs. They entered the 2011 playoffs as a #4 seed and have risen to the top of arguably the toughest WFTDA Region. They performed poorly at Rollercon in their sanctioned bouts, but were short some key skaters that will hopefully be back in uniform by the playoffs. If Rose has their full roster they will more than likely be returning to the WFTDA Championship Tournament. If not, they will have a very difficult time living up to the expectations of the #1 seed in the West.
#2 Denver Roller Dolls Denver remains among the elite in the West. This will mark the fourth year in a row that they have entered the playoffs as #2 or #3 seed in the West. Denver appears to have a chip on their shoulder with the way they crushed Rose and Minnesota at Rollercon recently. They will be a force to be reckoned with in the playoffs.
#3 B.ay A.rea D.erby Girls B.A.D. enters this year’s playoffs higher than they ever have before. With Oly and Rocky dropping in the rankings, it made it easier for B.A.D. to move on up. After taking over half a year off of playing sanctioned bouts, B.A.D. came out swinging. Since April they have played Denver, RMRG, Rat, Kansas, Texas, Windy, and Gotham. They won 4 out of 6 of those bouts, losing only to Denver and Gotham.
#4 Oly Rollers Oly has entered the West Region Playoffs as the #1 seed three years in a row, from 2009 – 2011. They dropped three ranks this Quarter to come in at #4. This drop in rankings can be contributed to multiple factors. Since the WFTDA Championship last year they have not played any of the West Region leagues going to the playoffs and they have had several key roster changes.
#5 Rocky Mountain Rollergirls Rocky also dropped three ranks, from #2 to #5 in one Quarter. They were the #2 seed in the West Region Playoffs for 2010 and 2011 and will now enter at #5. Rocky lost to Denver and B.A.D. this year but beat Arizona and Angel. They played well at Rollercon against Minnesota and Philly.
#6 Rat City Rollergirls Rat rounds off the Elite 6 of the West. They entered last year at #6 and will follow suit this year. They will be an interesting league to watch, seeing how they react to their recent close losses to B.A.D. and Rose.
#7 Arizona Roller Derby This is where things really start to go wild. At this point last year Arizona was #14 in the West. They have risen 7 ranks in 4 Quarters, including 3 ranks from Quarter 1 to Quarter 2. I know this is largely due to Arizona receiving a shot of transfer skaters that have enormous talent, but the jump in ranking is substantial nonetheless. Hopefully there will be a Oly vs Arizona bout at the tournament.
#8 Angel City Derby Girls Angel has stayed around the bottom half of the top 10 for 4 straight seasons, but enters this year’s playoffs the highest yet at #8. They have played some close bouts against Wasatch and Sacred this year and will more than likely get a rematch with at least one of the two. They got beat pretty good by Rat and Rocky this year and may also get a shot at redemption. It’s been a busy year for Angel and the West.
#9 Wasatch Roller Derby The story of the top 10 this Quarter goes to Wasatch. At this point last year they were ranked #18 in the West! They have risen 9 ranks in four Quarters. They rose from #15 in Quarter 1 to #9 in Quarter 2, a 6 rank leap to make it into the West Region Playoffs. Never before has a league jumped so many spots in the West right in time to make the playoffs. More on Wasatch later.
#10 Sacred City Derby Girls Sacred is another league that has been floating around the bottom half of the top ten for several years now. They finish off the top 10 with the last spot and squeak their way in. Sacred has been low key in 2012, beating Emerald but losing to Rose and Angel. Any questions about how good they are will be answered in a few weeks at the tournament.
As we can see, the leagues included in the top 6 in the West remain the same, as they have since 2010. However, there has been significant movement within those top 6 from last year’s playoffs to this year’s playoffs. Rose, Denver, and B.A.D. have moved up while Oly and Rocky dropped. Rat stayed at #6. #7 – #10 have been shaken up in a big way. Arizona has jumped into the rankings in a big way, and Wasatch has made a huge jump in the rankings, coming from #15 in Quarter 1 to #9 in Quarter 2. Stay tuned for more information on Wasatch in the followup, Who’s Wasatch?