On Saturday night the Connecticut Roller Girls met once again to face off in a flurry of fury. This bout put the Devil’s Rejects against the Ave Marias.
The Ave Marias were introduced first.
Parker Poison (assistant captain)
Guns N’ Bruises
MiZ CoN SepJeN
and visiting skater Zoomz Byda Boomz
Guns N’ Bruises was returning to the CT league after a short time off. Welcome back Guns!
The Devil’s Rejects were introduced next. Their red and black outfits were in stark contrast to the angelic blue and white of the Ave Marias.
C. Mya Rage
This was Babe Vigoda’s (#56) first bout, and Vixen’s return after a brief break in the action. Welcome Babe and welcome back Vixen!!
Elle and Pam, rolled up to the line to start this extremely unique bout. It didn’t take long for the Ave Marias to gain control of the scoreboard. After Elle’s 2 points at the onset, the Devil’s Rejects were scoreless for the next six jams. The defensive action within the Ave Maria pack was commendable. The girls capitalized on a few hugely strategic blocks in those first few minutes. Ether and Parker put the stop on Milla in the second jam, Pearl closed the door on Violet in the fourth, and Miz cleared the way for Pearl in the fifth. The Devil’s Rejects responded in kind. The crowd erupted in excitement when Elle ended Pearl’s jamming success in the fifth by dramatically pushing her teammate into Pearl’s path.
Halfway through the first period, Violet breathed some life into the struggling Devil’s Rejects. Her run of success began as she and Elle worked hard to successfully hold Doom to 4 points while the Devil’s jammer sat out on a penalty. Doom reached the front of the pack quickly off the starting line, but Violet, acting as pivot, held her back long enough for Elle to join in the defense. Just two jams later Violet robbed Pam of a profitable jam by breaking a brutal block by Elle and staying tight on Pam’s tail.
Riding off of violet’s defense, Flora, Milla, and Elle pulled 2, 5, and 3 points respectively. Unfortunately, the Devil’s 10 point drive wasn’t quite enough to close the gap between the two teams. Ether, Pam, and Pearl came back twice as hard with 5 consecutive claims on lead jammer and 20 points. Things were looking grim for the Devil’s Rejects until Doom was pulled out on a penalty with only a few minutes remaining in the first period. Elle and Flora took advantage of the opportunity and concluded the first half with a 9 and 4 point jam respectively. Halftime score? 38 for the Ave Marias, and 25 for the Devil’s Rejects.
Milla tries to push by Zoomz
photography by Dan Camera
One thing that made this bout particularly strange was the occasional thinning of the pack. The refs were frequently forced to make calls to pull the pack back together. Sometimes it seemed deliberate as a team tried to force the pack into a slower or faster pace. Pack speed can be a critical variable as the jammers scream around the track pulling points on a slow pack – or losing their endurance as they try to catch up to the fast pack. Other times, however, the pivots seemed to be trying to get their blockers to act as a single unit without success.
Elle pulls to the inside to try and sneak by Lemme Atter
photography by Dan Camera
The second half started off with the Ave Marias aggressively pulling points. However, Pam’s 9 and Pearl’s 8 (special bravo to Parker for a beautiful block of Rage) were the last big point jams for the women in white. Violet Riot came in strong yet again for the Devil’s Rejects with a 9 point jam. Shortly thereafter the Ave Marias seemed to change their jammer strategy. For the first half, the teams were rotating their jammers regularly – mixing it up between 4 or 5 women, but the second half saw the Ave Marias depending almost entirely on Pearl and Pam, only occasionally mixing it up with a serving of Doomcake. These jammers kept the lead for the Ave Marias, but the Devil’s Rejects were working hard for a comeback.
Holding back Doom.
photography by Dan Camera
Some especially commendable skating included Guns N’ Bruises decisive bump of Violet in the ninth jam (giving Pearl an edge for a 5 point jam) and Elle and Pearl’s furious race in the tenth which had the crowd on the edge of their seats. Talk about speed!
The night concluded with the Ave Marias with 84 and the Devil’s Rejects at 65.
Pearl Jammer 41 points, 7 leads in 12 jams
Pam Terror 35 points, 7 leads in 13 jams
Violet Riot 18 points, 2 leads in 7 jams
Eleanor Bruisevelt 16 points, 3 leads in 8 jams
Flora and Ether graced the bench most frequently with 5 and 4 visits respectively.
Ave Marias: Guns N’ Bruises
Devil’s Rejects: Violet Riot
Special thanks to Dan Camera for his photography. Check out all his photos here.
If you haven’t experienced Derby, then I implore you to check out the June 19th double header at the CT Sports Center. Connecticut’s own Stepford Sabotage will be taking on the Suburban Brawl, and The Gothem Girls will be taking on the Texicutioners. With Gothem ranked #1 in the nation, and the Texecutioners ranked #4, it’s bound to be an extremely exciting night.
Great job to all the players and participants on Saturday, it is such a joy to watch you skate.