Day 1 superbrief wrap-up

First day of Nationals 2011 in a nutshell:

Game 1: MN over Charm 160-121
Game 2: RMRG over Nashville 198-58
Game 3: KCRW over Rose 143-135
Game 4: Philly over Naptown 225-68

It’s a bit of a blur at 7am… but I had so much fun yesterday, and took pages and pages of notes. No big surprises, and my bracket is still intact, but Charm and Rose City both made credible threats.

I’d seen MN, Nashville, KCRW and Naptown play at regionals, but not the Eastern and Western teams, so my bracket predictions were really just honoring the rankings. I really liked Minnesota for the first bout, and they didn’t disappoint – though Charm really turned up the heat in the second half. Nashville had a tough game against Rocky Mountain; they just couldn’t seems to slow Rocky Mountain down at all, and their jammers were consistently trapped. A bit of showboating by RMRG here… I guess it’s to be expected with a home crowd, but there were a few plays that seemed a bit douchey. The KCRW-Rose game was the most exciting on the board — constant lead changes, tough pack work, and big crowd involvement. Rose really should have won that game, but KC had some favorable calls that allowed them to pull ahead. I was most looking forward to the Philly/Naptown game at the end of the day; this is where I would have loved to see an upset. But Naptown couldn’t keep control of the packs; I didn’t think they played as tightly as they did at regionals. They kept getting pushed past 20′ at the front, forced to let the jammer by. The Philly coach kept yelling to his bench, “NO CINDERELLA STORIES! NO CINDERELLA STORIES!”. They were ready for Naptown, and their pack work was just amazing. Some really incredible jamming by Maiden America and Amooze Booche, but it just wasn’t enough to close that gap.

Today should be just as exciting, with all of today’s winners facing the 1st seed teams from each region. North Central MN faces South Central Texas; Western RMRG faces Eastern Gotham; South Central KCRW faces North Central Windy; and Eastern Philly faces Western Oly.

Game 5: MN vs. Texas at 9:30a
Game 6: RMRG vs. Gotham at 11:15a
Game 7: KCRW vs. Windy at 1:00p
Game 8: Philly vs. Oly at 2:45p

And after a dinner break, Games 9 and 10 will advance the morning’s winners to the semifinals.

Game 9: (winner of 5 vs. winner of 6) at 5:30p
Game 10: (winner of 7 vs. winner of 8) at 7:15p

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