Sunday, June 1, 2014

Double Derby in Morristown

In last night’s home game double header, two local NJ roller derby teams played with the big dogs in Morristown NJ.

First up were the recently formed Jersey Boys Roller Derby in their first home bout against the veteran NYSE (New York Shock Exchange) Dow Jones Average. The Jersey Boys gained an early lead in the opening jams. #9999 Robert Brawlson jammed well for Jersey; #10 Rollomite was fast while jamming and effective while blocking. The Dow chipped at the lead and then pushed to the front when #275 I Havoc made a quadruple pass through the pack. The Dow expanded its lead throughout the first half. In a hard-hitting second half, Jersey worked hard at lessening the gap but, while both teams added points, the Dow’s experience showed, with #49 Frozen Cozen added the final points of the game for the Dow. Final score was 259-106 in favor of the Dow Jones Average. MVPs: #1983 iDon’t Care Bear (jammer) & VR6 Scooter McGoot (blocker) for Jersey; #275 I Havoc (jammer) & #8 Harm’s Way (blocker) for Dow.

In the second bout of the evening, the ladies of the NJRD (New Jersey Roller Derby) All Stars took on the Gotham Girls Roller Derby Grand Central Terminators. New York City’s Gotham Girls Roller Derby is noted as a powerful league. A founding member of the WFTDA (Women’s Flat Track Derby Association), they have four travel teams. The Grand Central Terminators is the newest, debuting in 2012. The league’s website quotes co-captain Angela Slamsbury (referring to inter-league matches), “you also want to play different people because that really helps you grow. You get used to playing the same teams... there’s definitely a separate challenge in playing a team you don’t know.” The NJRD All Stars (who also debuted in 2012) offered the challenge.

The All Stars opened strongly with grabbing an early lead, but fighting hard for every point. The early jams revealed a difference in blocking styles that would persist throughout the bout. The All Stars were more strategic, for example by frequently falling back to break the pack (a method of exploiting the rules to let a jammer through). The Terminators more typically simply put up three and four walls of blockers – and they were good at it. The All Stars have jammers that are skilled at exploiting holes in the opponents’ defenses, but the Terminators rarely had any, instead forcing opposing jammers to try to push their way through a solid wall of blockers. Both teams added points, but Terminator #35 Sweets McBacon tipped the lead to the Terminators. New York’s point advantage grew slowly, but the score remained fairly close until a series of successful jams (special mention to #1680 D.A.R.Y.L.) as halftime approached expanded the Terminators’ lead to 135-48. In the second half, as the All Stars struggled to close the gap, the Terminators turned up their game as well, slowly adding to their edge. As the clocked ticked down, the All Stars were at least determined to lift their score over 100. #44 Maulin Rouge did this with a few minutes left on the clock, and #12 Shannanigunz won additional points in a final very hard fought jam. Final score was 232-115, with the Terminators taking the victory. MVPs: #12 Shannanigunz (jammer) & #21 Pixie Bust (blocker) for All Stars; #1680 D.A.R.Y.L (jammer) & #410 Ames to Maim (blocker) for Grand Central Terminators.

The Beach Boys - Roller Skating Child

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