Bout report by Ryan Finnigan (@sicryan)
A surprisingly sunny September Saturday in Sheffield was the conveniently alliterative backdrop for the Sheffield Steel Rollergirls All Star team to take on Leicester’s Dolly Rockit Rollers in a monstrous bout at Ponds Forge. Back in February of 2012, SSRG fought for a 196-131 away victory over the Dolly Rockits and now it was time for the home rematch, with both teams bringing heavily vocal support and a lust for victory.
After a brief time out, SSRG’s Ruby Whacks was the offensive weapon of choice for the eleventh jam but DRR were there to stand their ground and some heavy takedowns saw Lead Jammer Ruby calling off the jam early, clutching her back after a hard fall. Despite this, SSRG continued to dominate and by the end of the fourteenth were beginning to run away at 110-46. That’s not to say that the spirits of the Dolly Rockit Rollers were dampened and a brief pause in play saw team members Diana Floors, Spirit of 76, Holly Sheet and Slamabama begin an impromptu dance on the track, with SSRG’s Miss D. Nightshade and jammer Cyndi Slaughter joining the fun. However, it was immediately back to business and DRR blocked Cyndi, allowing their Captain, Onya Case, to score some much needed points.
The opening of the seventeenth saw a full penalty box and DRR with just one Blocker on the track, the resilient Slamabama, admirably, yet unsuccessfully, attempting to delay the inevitable and contain Carol Deck-Her. The second half ended with a recovered Ruby Whacks returning and cutting through the DRR defensive line and making things look all too easy in a heavy-scoring power jam. The teams went to half-time with SSRG in front at 157-65 with the wowed crowd going for drinks, cakes and a stroll around the stalls.
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The Sheffield Steel Rollergirls came back out with a new focus and they returned with a flurry of high-scoring jams from first-half point grabbers Zombie, Dazey and the tenacious Ruby, now joined by second-half wonder jammer Holly Hotrod. The four jammers alongside a continued display of impressively tight blocking from the home side saw SSRG’s lead extended to a huge 188-65 at the end of the sixth jam in the second half.
At this point, the bout got grittier, as the teams tired and the competition heightened, with a series of sendings off in the seventh seeing just Hotrod and Miss. D left to defend against DRR’s Nitro Nous, seeing the Dolly Rockits digging in again and clawing back points to take the score to 188-84 at the end of the eighth.
The ninth saw what seemed to be the turning point and the acceleration of the domination from SSRG. A defensive tactical blunder from DRR saw their blockers attempting to just let through jammer Slamabama, yet Dazey Thunder again proved impossible to contain and wonderfully countered the tactic. This began another heavy scoring session for SSRG with Hotrod, Ruby and Zombie again beating Ophelia, Onya and Nitro successively to the lead jammer punch. The score at the end of the twelfth stood at 205-84.
Another heavy takedown on Ruby Whacks in the thirteenth saw DRR’s Spirit of 76 falling on top of her in a chaotic frenzy showing that neither team were relenting, despite the growing canyon of the scoreline. Again, Ruby recovered to take the score to 217-87 and took down blockers with a vengeance, earning huge home cheers and sealing a performance that would eventually earn her Best Jammer for the team.
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CURRENT EUROPEAN RANKING: 26 (source: derbydataeurope.com)