A pair of St. Louis flat-track roller derby leagues is primed for the back half of a competitive local regular season this weekend and both respective leagues’ defending champions look to grab the top spot outright in the standings with victories.
GateKeepers Roller Derby (GKRD) and the Arch Rival Roller Girls (ARRG) continue its co-hosted double headers this Saturday at Midwest Sport Hockey at Queeny Park (570 Weidman Rd., Ballwin, MO.) Doors open at 6 pm and the first game launches at 6:30 pm.
The twin-bill is the fourth event of each respective league’s six event regular seasons and at the midway point, there is arguably no definitive favorite to finish atop the standings come conclusion.
In the men’s opener, the Dogtown Rockets (1-1) challenge two-time defending “Turf Wars” kingpin, the South Grand Slammers (2-0). That game is followed by the women’s clash between the M-80s (1-1) and two-time defending ARRG league champs, the Smashinistas (1-1).
Last month, the Dogtown Rockets jumped into second place in the GKRD Turf Wars standings with a 180-148 victory over the Riverfront Crimes. Jammer Magnum P.I.M.P. topped the charge offensively with 95 points while Shane Bower, Mueller and Bat Wing provided pivotal rotations.
The core of the Rockets’ blocking schema, paced by Kurt Mangle, Monster Jam, Wrecking Bill, Dr. Dredd, Atom Bomb, Specs Offender and Red Rider, propelled the team to victory and all, alongside co-captain High Pains Drifter, will be in the mix again Saturday.
Standing in the way of the Rockets’ second straight duke is the squad that boasts an unblemished ledger, the South Grand Slammers. Idle in January, the defending champs bring an altered complexion to the roster due to league personnel re-alignment. It’s still quite an impressive as jammers Hand Rail, D Mouthful, Spin Diesel and Gnat King Kill join the powerful blocking contingent of Neil Death Experience, Double Excel, Inquadable Hulk, Fruit Wallup, Sweet Tooth and the newly-acquired Dago Whomp.
In Saturday’s finale featuring the women, the ARRG hierarchy will see a dramatic shift as one squad breaks the league’s three-way tie in the league standings and grabs sole possession of first place.
The M-80s improved to 1-1 with a 250-194 win over the Stunt Devils last December. Jammer Tupac Shank-Her recorded a personal best of 93 points in the victory, followed by 60-plus point outputs from both IDA the Living Dead and Science Friction. Blockers-by-trade Party Foul, Jamheiser Bush and Rhino-Might also collected imperative points while donning the star.
Blockers The Ginger Assassin, Warpath O’ Jen, Arcane Sugar, eZe, Carmina Piranha, Betty Blaster and newcomer Double J are set to “light the firecracker’s wick” and explode to victory this weekend.
Meanwhile, the Smashinistas look to rebound after suffering its first defeat in quite some time in January. A 171-138 setback to the Stunt Devils marked the first “L” in twelve months for the camouflage-clad troopers.
However, if there was ever a team to proverbially “turn it around,” it would be this one. Reigning ARRG MVP Brickyard posted 81 points last month. Jammers EnYa Nightmare, Cloak N’ Drag-her and multi-positional specialist Shimmy Hoffa will also don the jammer’s cap Saturday.
The steady blocking battalion of Eli Wallop, Downtown Dallis, Party Rockher, Chewblocka, Girl Fawkes, Fletch-A-Sketch, Prof. Rumbledore and Rock Slobster are primed to making scoring explosions happen while newcomers Hakuna Renata and Holliver Fist make their ARRG debuts.
General admission tickets for the double-header are $15 at the door while children 10 and under are free. For advance discounted tickets online, GO TO THIS LINK.
For more information on the Arch Rival Roller Girls, go to archrivalrollergirls.com.
For more information on GateKeepers Roller Derby, go to stlgatekeepers.com.
Here is a recap of January’s action from both leagues, courtesy of the “STL Derby Rewind.”