Rolling Along the River Updated Bracket

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Who’s got one working thumb, smells like Tiger Balm and is ready for more derby?

It’s the Roller Dames! We haven’t even aired out our pads from the tournament and we’re already getting back on the track. This Saturday (Oct. 22), the Dames will be back at Long Lines Family Rec Center taking on the Eastern Iowa Outlaws. Tickets are available for $8 in advance at Kinetico, Kneopfler Chevrolet or Dalton’s Office, so go get some NOW!

Schmancy Drew and the Case of the Disappearing Mojo

Schmancy Drew, a plucky, young, mystery-solving derby girl, found herself in the Twin Cities with a mystery before her. It seemed that the Sioux City Roller Dames had lost their bout-winning mojo, and they were just about to play the North Star Supernovas (ranked #7 in the region). Had the mojo been stolen? Innocently misplaced? Did Skinnerella put it in the trunk of her car and forget about it like that gallon of milk? Schmancy Drew was determined to find out!

The first thing that Schmancy noticed was the difference in the number of players for each team; the Roller Dames were a few players short of a full roster, with only nine girls. Luckily, Stella Italiana from the Des Moines Derby Dames happened to be in town and agreed to join the Roller Dames for the bout. Still, this left the Dames with only 3 jammers, compared to North Star’s 10.

After the first few jams, the Roller Dames were scoreless, while North Star put up grand slam after grand slam. Then Dames jammer, Sum Mo Payne, got lead status, scored one point, and called off the jam. Could this be a glimpse of the mojo Schmancy had been searching for?

That solitary point seemed terribly lonely on the scoreboard all by itself, but no other points wanted to join it. Maybe, Schmancy thought, they were frightened of all of the GHOST POINTS on North Star’s side of the scoreboard.  Ghost points are awarded for players on the opposing team who are in the penalty box when the jammer clears the pack. And golly, did Sioux City give out the ghost points–123 total for the bout! Maybe, thought Schmancy, the Roller Dames’ mojo was hidden under the penalty box chairs.

The teams retired to their locker rooms at the half with a score of 24-133, North Star. The Roller Dames were down, but not quite defeated. As Schmancy scoured the locker room for clues–and bananas– the Dames decided that they really ought to stop committing penalties, or at the very least cut back to half-a-pack a day. Unfortunately, Felony Convixen, who had suffered a knee injury during the first half, would not be able to return to the bout. Was the mojo hidden inside Felony’s knee cartilage?

The Dames retook the track, determined to play and have fun, mojo or nojo. And much to Schmancy’s surprise, the Roller Dames’ illusive mojo had returned of it’s own accord! The Dames got lead jammer status in the first 6 jams of the second half, and had lead a total of 13 times in the half, opposed to North Star’s 7. During the second half, the Dames defense was able to slow down the opposing jammer, only allowing 52 points.

The second half was a completely different bout–except that it was the same bout and the ridiculously uneven score from the first half was factored in. Dames’ jammers took lead about 2/3 of the time and scored 40 points. Though North Star still outscored the Roller Dames (40-52 in the half), the Dames had made it a competitive and interesting bout, far more interesting than the final score of 64-185 would lead you to believe.

Some notable highlights for North Star: Katarina Hit scored a total of 41 points in the bout; six North Star jammers had 20+ points totals; they pretty much, all-around kicked ass. Roller Dames high points: Stella Italiana scored 33 points and got lead jammer in 12 of 17 jams; Mo Payne scored 23 (including that tricky first point) and got lead in half of her jams; Dubbs got lead in half of her jams and had the lowest points scored/points allowed differential; Skinnerella got laid smooth out on the track and when she opened her eyes she thought Natalie Portman was kneeling over her, stroking her face…turned out it was just ref. Rainbow Spite, but still it was pretty great for a second there.

And so Schmancy Drew had laid to rest the case of the missing mojo–it was in the locker room, apparently, stuffed into the bottom of one of the smelly skate bags. Now that the Roller Dames have it back, they’re going to put a shock collar on it and lock it up in a pen out behind the landfill, only bringing it out when they need it.

Schmancy would like to thank the North Star Supernovas, the Twin Cities Terrors for hosting us and all of the fans, volunteers and refs for coming out. It was a great night!

Sioux City vs. Sioux Falls: A Brief Post-mortem

You know how I usually squeeze a bunch of stats into these blogs? Well, after waiting a while to get a look at the stats from our last bout, I decided that the final score really tells us all that we need to know. The Sioux Falls Roller Dollz won, 227-35. We were murdered–murdered, dismembered and and thrown into the river. Now that all of our body parts have washed ashore, we’re ready to put them back together (probably more along the lines of Frankenstein than The 6 Million Dollar Man).

So here’s what happened, to the best of my recollection. After the first few jams, Sioux Falls had established a commanding lead and had held us scoreless. We’re not accustomed to this happening and basically, we all lost our damn minds.  I was yelling, Dubbs was collecting penalties, Mo was laughing maniacally, Funsize was darting around frantically like a rabbit without a hole and I’m pretty sure our bench coach, The Rodster, was crying.

While we were busy forgetting how to play roller derby, the Dollz were–guess what–PLAYING ROLLER DERBY. They played a really great bout, as you may have gathered from the score. They are an incredibly strong team and we learned quite a lot from them.

The Dames did have a few notable highlights from the bout. Funsize and Mo each had a grand slam and, between the two of them, scored nearly all of our 35 points.  The team penalties were really something to be proud of, with our entire team only committing 25 minors and 15 majors (and, to be fair, about half of those were Dubbs :), while the Dollz had 42 minors and 20 majors. It’s a small victory, but, hey it’s something to be proud of.

During the last jam of the game, Funsize decided that she would have a little fun and, instead of trying to score any points (which would have been pointless), she just blocked the opposing jammer, keeping her scoreless as well. This was, by far, the most entertaining jam of the game, as far as our bench was concerned, anyway.

At the end of the night, we didn’t win…not even CLOSE. But we had a great time and have since been working on the weaknesses that were so clearly brought into the open during this bout. We thank the Dollz and the town of Brookings for hosting this awesome evening of roller derby.

Hey, Remember When We Played Fargo? Yeah, Me Neither.

But I promise it did happen. Two weeks ago, which is like 15 years in blog-time. Some might say I dropped the ball on this one, but the fact is I just set the ball aside for a bit; a gal can only handle so many balls at one time.

Why is everyone falling down? And what happened to my jar of rendered goose fat?

First, let me remind you of how awesome the Fargo-Moorhead Derby Girls are. We played them twice during last year’s Rolling Along the River Tournament and both bouts were crazy-fun, competitive and exciting for both players and spectators. The Roller Dames barely eked out wins against them in the tournament, all the while, the Fargo ladies displayed great sportsmanship, positive attitudes and impossibly high alcohol tolerances. Also, they wear these super-cute sparkly blue uniforms, which I just love.

Team Paramedic, Waste 'em Kate, thinks we ought to give peace a chance, while Mr. McClennan wonders, "Two? Two what?".

We expected another very close and challenging bout when they came back to town for our home closer, and that’s just what we got. Fargo leapt out to an early lead, scoring three grand slams and some change in the first four jams, leaving the score 24-2 going into jam 5. Our bench coaches, Mo Captain and the Rodster started prying our heads out of our asses and got us back into the game after a short timeout. During the remainderof the first half, the Roller Dames took lead jammer status 15 out of 19 times and held Fargo to very few points. We broke for halftime with the score 39-64, Dames.

T-Vicious, Dubbs and Mo Payne are harder to pass than a Chinese math class.

White Tiger Martial Arts did a really cool demo during halftime where this little girl wiped the floor with a boy who was trying to take her purse, so now I know what NOT to do next time I mug a small child.

"That's my purse! I don't know you!"

We took the track for the second half, confident that we had gotten our heads into the game. Then this happened: the Roller Dames were held scoreless for a stretch of five jams, while Fargo’s Sarin Dipity, Sin Gria, Skaty Gaga and Shock Therapy combined to score 42 points, snatching the lead as quickly and easily as I snatch little girls’ purses.

Though it looks like Mo is giving Dubbs a good, hard whip, she is actually in the process of flinging her to the ground so she can take back her leggings.

All of the things we did right in the first half, Fargo did righter in the second. They were awarded lead 11 of 19 jams and called it off nearly every time, holding us to few or no points. Mo Payne, Funsize, Dubbs and Felony Convixen continued to put up points for the Roller Dames, but we were never quite able to close the gap. At the buzzer, the final score was 144-110, Fargo.

This photo was taken seconds before The Annihilatrix turned green, shredded her boutfit and started smashing things. Skip ahead, skip ahead, we all learned a little something about human fragility and Bill Bixby walked proudly into the sunset.

Although I probably should have felt worse about the loss, Fargo is such a great team, I was honestly having too much fun to kick myself. And after our last two bouts where the score got ridiculously out of hand, I realize that I’d rather lose a close bout than win a blowout any day. Thanks a million to all of the players, coaches and volunteers who came down from Fargo; we can’t wait to do it again!

Does everyone look this cool when they call off a jam, or is it just Mo Payne?

Meet Miss March (written in the style of James Lipton)

Our Dame of the month for the last half of March/first half of April, silent and noble as the first buttercup of spring, with the determination and will of a trout and all of the grace of a Kleenex dancing in the updraft of a vesper wind, is the incomparable SPANKY BOTTOMS!

Miss Bottoms, who came to grace the Roller Dames with her talent in January of 2009, learned to skate in the sunny climes of Long Beach, California, where she lived for much of her young life. It became her daily practice, as a girl, to don sunglasses with pictures of Shawn Cassidy affixed to the inside of the lenses, hoist her Bangles-blaring boom box atop her shoulder and go roller skating about her neighborhood, bringing joy into the lives of all who beheld her.

It was here, in Long Beach, where Spanky Bottoms was first beguiled by the wily mistress, roller derby. Miss Bottoms nourished her competitive hunger by watching the L.A. Thunderbirds, led by Skinny Minnie.

After returning to her childhood home of Sioux City, Miss Bottoms met and later married Mr. Bottoms, known in other circles as Tim. Tim could no more tame a soul as wild as Spanky’s than a steamboat captain can tame the Mississippi River, but he has happily ridden her crests and swells for the past 21 years. And shortly after the birth of the Sioux City Roller Dames, the Bottomses rejoiced in another birth, that of their beloved ragamuffin, Silas.

Since becoming a Roller Dame, Spanky Bottoms has amazed and delighted us all with her impeccable skill as a blocker and pivot, and has received accolades such as the cleanest skater award, both for her avoidance of the penalty box and for her most impressive ability to not reek like a cat butt as her teammates all do. She holds a seat on the team’s board of directors and serves as the team treasurer, managing the collective piggy bank with all of the financial acumen of James Pierpont Morgan. She has proven herself a vicious cakist and never fails to tickle our pallets with her bake sale cake pops.

Miss Bottoms, I am in awe of you, I avert my eyes from your blinding glory, and am unworthy of even your most minuscule crumbs of attention.

Saturday Night Roller Derby Special!

This Saturday at Long Lines, one night only, you can get two roller derby bouts for the price of one! That’s right, folks! I’ve got so much roller derby, I’m giving it away! You’ll get: the Norfolk Bruizin’ Bettys taking on the Dakota City Demolition Crew; AND the smart, sexy, stain-resistant, dishwasher-safe Sioux City Roller Dames against their tournament rivals, Fargo-Moorhead Derby Girls! But wait, there’s more! White Tiger Martial Arts will be there with super-karate-chopping action during the halftime performance!

I ask you, what would you expect to pay for ALL of this? $100? $200? Well, with this special blog-o-vision offer, you can get all of this and much more (depending on whether to hit Dalton’s for the after party) for only $10. You heard me right, just $10. Get your tickets now from me, any other dame you can flag down, at Knoepfler Chevrolet, Dalton’s Pub or Kinetico of Siouxland. But hurry! A deal like this won’t last long (until game day, then tickets are $12).

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