It was Blue Devils practically across the board—winning every caption except Percussion—at Pearl Presents the Masters of the Summer Music Games in Murfreesboro, Tenn. on Friday, July 30.
The same as at the DCI Southwestern events the weekend before in San Antonio, one Visual Effect and one Music Effect judge judged this show, so the Effect scores were not divided in half. As in previous competitions, the three Visual judges (Performance, Ensemble and Color Guard) and the three Music judges (Brass, Ensemble and Percussion) had a maximum of 20 points to award, with each of those scores being divided in half before being added to the final Visual and Music totals. (This allows those judges to work with tenths of a point instead of half-tenths of a point.) Please keep that in mind and know that when it's mentioned a corps was up by 0.50 in any of the Visual or Music captions, it really means they were up by 0.25 as far as the final total overall score is concerned.
The contest in Murfreesboro started with Boston Crusaders and was followed by Phantom Regiment, Santa Clara Vanguard, The Cadets, Carolina Crown, Bluecoats, The Cavaliers and Blue Devils.
Last weekend in San Antonio, The Cavaliers seemed to maintain the corps' recent ascension into second place, with Bluecoats, Carolina Crown and The Cadets within a span of 0.70. In Murfreesboro, Bluecoats topped The Cavaliers by 0.45, Carolina Crown was 0.75 down from The Cavaliers and The Cadets, after being 0.70 down to Bluecoats the previous weekend, were now 3.65 down. Blue Devils added a full 3.00 to their score from San Antonio, Bluecoats 3.65, The Cavaliers 2.70, Carolina Crown 2.50 and The Cadets 1.65. However, and this is quite interesting, Santa Clara Vanguard and Phantom Regiment also added an identical 1.65 to their scores from San Antonio. Curiously, Boston Crusaders' score dropped by 0.60.
View the complete scoring recap from Murfreesboro.
1st place Blue Devils (95.30), after losing Brass in San Antonio to The Cadets, turned the tables on The Cadets' 4th place Brass line in Murfreesboro and won every caption except Percussion, which was captured by the Bluecoats. After gaining 3.00 in one week, with only two weeks left and just 4.70 points remaining, (at least on a 100 point scale), BD's thrust toward the top appears to have few roadblocks in the way; one such possibility being a score deflation in the coming week. 1.60 of that 3.00 advancement from San Antonio came in General Effect alone, with 1.00 of that in GE Music. Brass added 0.80 (remember to divide that in half before adding to the final score) Color Guard added 0.60 to their score (ditto), as did the Visual Ensemble score. Although Percussion took third, the line was only 0.30 down to Bluecoats and 0.1 down to The Cavaliers.
2nd place Bluecoats (93.55) beat Phantom Regiment in Percussion by 0.40 after losing to Regiment's long-dominating drum line by 0.50 in San Antonio. After losing to The Cavaliers by 0.45 in San Antonio, the corps turned the tables and finished above The Cavaliers by that same spread. Last weekend, Bluecoats were down to The Cavaliers by 0.70 in total Visual. In Murfreesboro, the corps was down by 0.45 in that caption, finishing fourth and taking fifth in Visual Ensemble. But most notably, the corps went up a whopping 1.80 in total GE, 0.60 in GE Visual and 1.20 in GE Music, which is rarely seen over the course of one week. It will be most interesting to see if that holds in Atlanta. Staying 0.20 under Blue Devils in Brass and Music Ensemble, the 0.30 advantage in Percussion helped the corps finish just 0.05 under BD in total Music.
3rd place The Cavaliers (93.10) went up a healthy 1.70 in total GE; 1.30 of that in GE Music, even higher than Bluecoats' improvement in that caption. (However, the corps was still 0.20 down to Bluecoats in total GE and 0.70 down to Blue Devils.) While the Color Guard score went up by 0.60, Visual Performance dropped by 0.30, perhaps due to the addition of a new ending the night before. Likewise, while total Music went up by 0.80, Music Ensemble dropped by 0.30. In total Visual, the corps finished in fifth, just as it had done in San Antonio.
4th place Carolina Crown (92.35) went from 0.10 behind Bluecoats last weekend to 1.20 behind largely a result of the Bluecoats opening up an additional 0.60 in total GE and an additional 0.85 in total Music. Percussion took sixth place, 1.10 behind Bluecoats after being 0.60 down in San Antonio. The corps' saving grace is the Visual captions, 0.60 above Bluecoats in total Visual and 0.95 above The Cadets. Brass is still 0.20 behind The Cadets and is sitting in fifth place, an unexpected turn of events from the beginning of the season.
5th place The Cadets (90.90) remain in the same position the corps placed in San Antonio, but the spread of 1.45 behind 4th place is far from the 0.60 spread the weekend before. After being 0.70 behind the 3rd place corps in San Antonio, (Bluecoats), the corps finished 2.40 behind the 3rd place corps in Murfreesboro, (The Cavaliers). Much of that is due to the corps gaining just 0.20 in total Music, tying Carolina Crown for fourth after being second in total Music in San Antonio. The bright spot for the corps was moving up to second place in Visual Ensemble after placing fifth in San Antonio. The guard dropped to sixth place (under Santa Clara Vanguard), dropping 0.10 in score and leading one to speculate there was quite a bit of new guard work added over the past week.
6th place Santa Clara Vanguard (88.75) scored the exact same scores in both GE Visual and GE Music as in San Antonio. Visual Performance also scored the same. Total Visual went up by 0.50 and total Music by 0.65. Visual Performance and Color Guard were the two highest placing captions with fifth place, while all other captions were sixth or seventh. Now just 0.25 above Phantom Regiment's total score, much of the score stagnation compared to Regiment is due to that corps adding 1.00 to its total GE score while SCV's score stayed the same.
7th place Phantom Regiment (88.50) fell to fourth in Percussion, 0.40 under Bluecoats, after beating Bluecoats' drum line by 0.50 in San Antonio. The corps improved 1.00 in total GE mostly due to a 0.80 jump in GE Music. All three Visual captions (Performance, Ensemble and Color Guard) placed seventh; the 1.00 deficit to SCV largely accounting for why the corps finished 0.25 down to SCV in total score and not above SCV. Total Visual improved by 0.30 and total Music went up by 0.35.
8th place Boston Crusaders (84.95) were eighth across the board in every caption and all but two of the sixteen sub-captions. The corps lost 0.50 in total GE due to falling 0.60 in GE Music. A small 0.05 was also lost in total Visual due to a 0.70 drop in Visual Ensemble. Percussion got the same score as in San Antonio and Music Ensemble dropped 0.50.
In Atlanta today (Saturday, July 31), the DCI Atlanta Southeastern Championship Presented by Lake Oconee & Greene County, GA performance order (established by the scores from San Antonio, with the corps drawing within groupings of three and Jersey Surf positioned according to the corps' score at a recent contest) starts with Alliance and Atlanta CorpsVets, followed by the World Class corps: Cascades, Pioneer, Mandarins, Teal Sound, Pacific Crest, Jersey Surf, Spirit, Crossmen, Troopers, Colts, The Academy, Blue Knights, Madison Scouts, Glassmen, Blue Stars, Phantom Regiment, Boston Crusaders, The Cadets, Carolina Crown, Santa Clara Vanguard, Bluecoats, The Cavaliers and Blue Devils. The show begins at 3 p.m. ET. Check out DCI.org for a live blog from the event and the Fan Network for the live video feed.