Monday, 30 November 2009

War of The Roses Round-Up

Saturday saw the first open bout to ever take place in Manchester -
Rainy City Rollergirls versus Leeds Rotten Rollers, in the War of The Roses, and Jessica Mooney was there to watch it go down!

I was very excited about this bout. I knew was going to be good because I knew it would be close. I'd seen RCRG play at Roll Britannia and I was really impressed by their skill despite being less than a year old at the time. LRD have been bouting for a while but have really come into their own in the last few months as shown in their Northern EXPosure win in September.

The bout started with Bruise Em' Banshee (LRD) and Missy Rascal (RCRG) lined up on the jam line. It went off with a bang as Missy gained lead jammer and Banshee was sent off on her initial pass for cutting track. Rainy City showed their prowess in the pack and sent Missy round to gain the first points of the game. The next Jam was Feral Fairy and X Con Vick. It was nice to see Vick as a jammer and although she skated well, Feral gained lead, picked up some points and called the jam quickly. Two jams in and the score was 14-0 to RCRG.

Leeds sent in Gorgon Roller to jam and Dee-Mise went in for Rainy . Dee-Mise got sent to the box and Gorgon picked up the Rotten Rollers first points. She called it off and let Banshee go in for a Power Jam. Banshee gained two scoring passes for Leeds and then called it as Dee-Mise made her way back onto the track. Leeds were back in the game and both teams became aware that they were in for a fight.  The power went back and forth for the first half with someone sent to the penalty box in nearly every jam. Rushin' Doll had a great jam and got a good few points for Leeds with two scoring passes. Then Missy stepped up to the line against Doll-ce Vita. Doll-ce was sent off on her initial pass but then was sent off again almost as soon as she stepped on the track. Missy gained lead and whizzed through the pack with what seemed like ease. Rainy City's pack did a great job of slowing right down and displayed excellent teamwork that allowed Missy to gain four Grand Slams. It was a very impressive 20 point jam!

It all got very exciting. Rainy were in the lead but each team was adjusting and the crowd could really feel that this bout was just getting started. Iceberg set off to jam with Gorgon in the box but was sent off for an illegal procedure when a ref spotted that she hadn't got a star on her helmet cover because it was in-side-out. Easy mistake to make but it cost her one minute in the box. Although Gorgon was a lone jammer Rainy held her back well and used some great waterfalling techniques to keep her from breaking the pack .

It was 2 on 2 on the track. Rushin' and Vick versus Rogue Doll and Feral Fairy. Missy and Banshee were up against each other jamming but Missy took lead. At this point in the game X Con Vick went down while checking, and she went down hard. She was very calm about the whole thing and seemed to politely motion that she was injured and couldn't get up. It was all very civilized and she seemed not to be in too much pain. Turns out she'd fractured her leg in two places! She is definitely tough so I've no doubt she'll be back skating soon.
The Jam started over with Chernobelle replacing Vick and Missy gained lead jammer again. She scored some precious points and called it quickly. At one point Rushin' jammed against Feral  (I did really enjoy when these two jammed against each other) and although Feral gained lead, Rushin' stayed behind her and as they were making their scoring pass Rushin' downed Feral and raced through the pack forcing Feral to call the Jam and scoring Leeds a few much needed points.
At half time the score was RCRG 78- LRD 57

Both teams sent out their big guns for the first Jam of the second half. Two strong packs and two strong jammers. LRD showed they weren't out of the game yet. Rushin' blazed through the pack ahead of Missy and raced around for three scoring passes. Then Toxic came out with Feral on the jam line. Feral was sent to the box on her initial pass and Toxic gained some LRD pointage. Banshee had a clear run jamming, as Feral was in the box. Rainy City were doing well but leeds had clearly regrouped and were sending out more effective line-ups . Leeds were also gaining confidence and seemed more like their playful selfs as Rigor Morris danced at pyscho Delia at the pivot line. Pyscho wasn't intimidated but the crowd was entertained and it was good to see the ladies having a good time on the track. Banshee racked up more points and the
Rotten Rollers took lead 100-83.

Gorgon lined up to jam but after an official time out Banshee had to put her jammer cover back on and head to the box. Apparently a penalty needed to be served, so Missy jammed unopposed and gained two scoring passes. She called it as Banshee re-entered the track. Rushin' and Feral jammed with Feral gaining lead but calling it as she entered her first scoring pass. She gained a point but called it as both teams were trying to keep the point margin in their favour, as they were all to aware that that clock was counting down rapidly.

17 minutes to go and RCRG were in the lead again with 112-107. Both teams started to play very defensively with Leeds making good walls at the front and Rainy giving some very big hits to jammers. Banshee and Missy lined up again and Missy flew through the pack. She looked as if she was about to get lead but as she dashed past the last line of defense she slowed down. She knew what was coming and as she looked at the ref he confirmed, she had cut the track, and she was off to the box. Banshee jammed unopposed and the Rotten Rollers were back in the lead 132- 126

Leeds really needed to keep that lead. Gorgon had her strongest Jam of the game against Missy and Rushin' scored one point against, a hot on her tails, Mookchop . As Toxic lined up for the last Jam against Missy I was on the edge of my seat. Rainy City were behind but Missy had been jamming amazingly throughout and if anyone could pull it off it would be her. No sooner had the whistle blown though and Missy was in the box! RCRG played defensively and were determined Toxic would put no more points on the board. Dee-Mise keep her back for an impressively long time and when she did get by Sinthia Pain and Belle-Istic were their to knock her back again. Toxic finally broke through the pack with 2 seconds to spare. She called it off and Leeds leapt out onto the track to celebrate.

Rainy City Rollergirls  127- LRD Rotten Rollers 138 

Bruise em' Banshee (LRD)
Belle-Istic (RCRG)

Notable blockers were Demi lition and Rigor Morris for LRD and Toxic (and I always though she was only a jammer!) was very impressive in the pack. LRD had good team work and to be honest it difficult to pick out the *star* players in such a great team. They are all exceptionally strong skaters and they have a huge pool of talent as illustrated by the fact that lots of amazing LRD ladies weren't even playing! I believe it was Devil Rae's first bout and she did great. Jerry Attric and Rosewhip were the Rotten Roller bench managers and they were as calm and organized as always.

On Rainy City's side Sui-Cider and Correctional Felicity were bench managing. In the pack Rogue Doll, Belle-Istic and Dee-Mise really showed their skills. Rainy City had a lot of confidence and were very tactical in their game play. They adapted well to different situations and really worked to control the pack. They have a really strong team of big hitters and it really felt like they trusted each other on the track. They started and ended the game as an strong force and it was fun to watch them splat the Jammers. When Rainy City hit, they hit hard.

Rainy City hosted a fierce bout and I will definitely be in line for the re-match!

Jessica Mooney


  1. Sounds amazing! Gutted I missed it, but definitely will be there for the rematch!

  2. That's how good it was - blow for blow and jam by jam fatastic!

    Great to see so many derby fans there as well - loads of followers for both teams, and a great atmosphere in the hall!

    Both teams could go very far, and I know there'll be fans following, because I certainly will!