At the midpoint of the respective local campaigns for the Arch Rival Roller Girls and GateKeepers Roller Derby, Saturday’s flat-track outcomes at Midwest Sport Hockey resulted in one league’s standings complexion becoming clearer while the other saw its hierarchy deadlocked.
In the women’s main event in front of 600 fans at Queeny Park, defending ARRG champion the Stunt Devils topped the M-80s, 152-148, to force a three-way tie in the standings while in the men’s opener, the Central West Friends improved to 2-0 and maintained first place positioning with its 184-138 topper over the Creve Coroners.
ARRG: STUNT DEVILS 152 M-80s 148
In a heart-stopping donnybrook that contained five ties, the Stunt Devils (1-1) churned a 19-0 stalemate-breaking rally in the latter stretches of the game and notched the four-point duke to notch its first victory of the season and force a three-way tie with the M-80s and the idle Smashinistas, who also currently possess 1-1 records.
A win was the missive Saturday night but another three-letter word was in the lexicon of the purple rollers heading into battle against an undefeated team. That word would be “fun.”
“We knew that playing the M-80s was just going to be fun,” reflected Stunts’ co-captain Ninja Sass ‘Em afterwards. “We knew that it was going to be a great time. We were just to be able to joke around on the line and have fun derby. And that’s what we really love about the local season.”
Scoring was frenetic in the first ten minutes of clock and the score was tied 23-23. On the next rotation, jammers D’Manda Flapjack and CupQuake each posted fourteen points for the M-80s and Stunts, respectively, and the stalemate was pushed to 37-37.
Nine straight points from the Stunts’ tandem of Bricktator and Psychokid d Freakout on the next two rotations gave the purple rollers a 46-37 edge with 14:10 left in the first period. Flapjack griddled 14 points in jam 12, resulting in a 51-46 scoreboard flip in favor of the M-80s.
Following Bricktator’s four-pointer scored that whittle the game to a solo point, the M-80s’ Flapjack collected a dozen with 11:45 left in the frame to push the “lumberjills” lead to 63-50.
As the period progressed, the Stunts whittled the differential back to single digits and trailed 63-57 following Freakout’s grand slam with 6:20 remaining.
The M-80s stopped the surge with solid walls built by blockers Oak, C’Mon!?!, Lone Pine, Let’s Get Beard, Bad Adze, Lumberjam, Arcane Sugar, Jenforcer, Trigger Happy Jackie, Snotface, Yoko Low Blow, Quicksandz and Warpath O’ Jen. This resulted in a 18-0 rally, punctuated by Flapjack’s nine-pointer, that pushed the plaid-clad’s lead to 81-57 with 2:30 left in the period.
The Stunts finished with a baker’s dozen as CupQuake scored nine in the period’s penultimate jam and Bricktator added four on the final rotation that narrowed the M-80s’ lead to 81-70 at intermission.
The momentum that concluded the opening frame for the Stunts carried into the second half as Bricktator’s period-opening 11-point jam resulted in the games third tie, 81-81.
After the M-80s’ Funyun notched a solo point to break the deadlock, the Stunts churned a 32-2 rally. CupQuake’s nine-pointer in jam 3 was followed by Bricktator’s 23-3 power jam as the defending champs built a 113-85 lead at the 25:20 mark.
The M-80s responded with 16 points uncontested over the next four jams and whittled the score to 113-101 following Flapjack’s four pointer scored with 20:20 left in the contest.
The Stunts pushed the score to 120-102 after jam 11, but Flapjack’s 16-point power jam with 15:45 remaining cinched the game to a two-point affair, 120-118.
Bricktator’s four-pointer scored with 13:00 left opened a six-point margin for the Stunts, but the M-80s logged six straight and tied the game with ten minutes remaining. Beard’s two-pointer was followed by Paul Funyun’s four-point strike with 10:45 left and the contest was knotted up, 124-124.
A 1-1 rotation in jam 17 kept the score tied, 125-125, and a 4-4 rotation with 8:30 left pushed the standoff to 129-129.
The Stunts’ blocking schema then went into lockdown mode. Paced by the aforementioned Sass ‘Em, Shear-Ra Powers, Aceta Menacin, Cruella Belle-Ville, Peg E. Sass, Sound-Proof, Danisaurus Rex , Momentum Mori, Stormin Norma and Midnight Smack, the defending champs posted the aforementioned 19-0 streak over the next four rotations.
Freakout’s four-point tally with 7:15 remaining gave the Stunts a 133-129 edge and CupQuake followed with a trey to extend the lead to seven points. Then after a scoreless jam, Freakout collected a dozen points with 4:05 left to push the Stunts’ advantage to 148-129.
Flapjack broke the M-80s’ scoring drought and collected nine with 2:58 left to narrow the score to 148-138. Then following a scoreless rotation, Flapjack was whistled for a track cut on the game’s penultimate jam. Even with the setback, Flapjack emerged from the penalty box and posted a 10-4 jam that whittled the Stunts’ lead to 152-148 with two seconds remaining.
On the game’s final jam, and with standings’ supremacy hanging in the balance, the Stunts’ Bricktator raced out in front of the pack to grab lead as the period clock expired. The veteran, who finished the evening with 61 points, called off the jam to preserve the four-point duke that gave the defending champs its first win of the season and force the three-team dead heat in the ARRG standings.
“We had to stop Anita Waffle from producing,” jokingly said Stunts’ co-captain Sass ‘Em in reference to the M-80s’ Flapjack, who finished with 109 points. “We know that she is a force to be reckoned with and we switched up our lines in order to accommodate. We were just digging in and hoping that our jammers were able to punch through. When we were able to get out, we were just running it as best as we could.”
CupQuake finished the night with 39 points and Freakout added 38. The Stunts now aim for its second straight victory, and top placement on the totem pole, in a January 23 battle against the Smashinistas at Midwest Sport Hockey.
Meanwhile the M-80s, despite Saturday’s loss, currently sit atop the ARRG standings mathematically as the lone team with a positive point differential through three regular season ARRG events (+42) in comparison to the Stunts (-1) and the Smashinistas (-41). The squad will be idle in the next round of intraleague play and returns to the flat-track in February.
“We wanted to hold (the Stunts) jammers back,” reflected M-80s co-captain Let’s Get Beard afterwards of the team’s mindset. “It’s pretty basic strategy. Sometimes we were successful, sometimes we just weren’t. The game came down to the last jam, which is great for the crowd.
STUNT DEVILS (152): Bricktator 61, CupQuake 39, Psychokid d Freakout 38, Shear-Ra Powers 4.
M-80s (148): D’Manda Flapjack 109, Paul Funyun 9, Lumberjam 8, Snotface 8, Bloody Gaga 7, Let’s Get Beard 5, Warpath O’ Jen 2.
GKRD: CENTRAL WEST FRIENDS 184 CREVE CORONERS 138
If one currently looks at the ledger of the newly-minted Central West Friends, they’ll see it spotless. Even with high-scoring jammer Bower Ranger out of the mix Saturday, the 46-point victory was still impressive as the deep squad claimed the top spot in the “Turf Wars” standings with a 2-0 record.
CWF posted a 21-4 lead after two jams following co-captain Fruit Wallup’s 14-point strike at the 27:10 mark.
The Creve Coroners, missing both a starting jammer (Gnat King Kill) and blocker (Double Excel) due to injury, countered with 18 points uncontested via power jams. Magnum P.I.M.P. collected a 10-point jam with 24:40 left in the frame to whittle the Friends’ lead to 21-14. Indy followed with an eight-point strike on the next rotation that resulted in a 22-21 scoreboard flip in favor of the Coroners.
CWF lynchpin Mailbox notched a grand slam in jam 6, resulting in a 26-22 lead change, but the Coroners rebounded with an 18-0 rally as Magnum’s 13-pointer with 20:15 left in the frame was followed by Indy’s grand slam from Indy to give the “C-doubles” a 40-26 advantage at the 19:10 mark.
The Friends’ blocking battalion, paced by co-captain Monster Jam, The Great Stromboli, SoGo, Perc In Boots, Cpt. Kramerica, Red Rider, Poppa Choppa and Blue Suede Bruise, knuckled down and assisted on a 24-0 streak to regain the lead. In the process, Mailbox notched a pair of nine-point jams and later added a rally-concluding four-pointer with 11:00 left in the period to extend the CWF’s lead to 50-40.
As the period progressed, the ten-point differential remained intact and with 6:05 left in the period, the Friends possessed a 68-58 advantage. The CWF utilized a 14-5 surge, with all points scored by Mailbox, to push the lead to 82-63 with 2:10 left in the frame.
With blocking paced by Boney Fangers, Specs Offender, Irving, O’ Connell, Hulk, Crazy Kid Curry and Cat Daddy, back-to-back three-pointers was scored by the Coroners to conclude the first period as Indy and Magnum each collected treys to whittle the Friends’ lead to a baker’s dozen at intermission, 82-69.
Feeling the late first-half pressure, CWF posted 19 points straight to launch the second frame. A period-opening grand slam by Mailbox was followed by Wallup’s 10-pointer at the 27:10 mark to push the lead to 97-69. Mailbox added a four-pointer to conclude the rally that gave the Friends a 101-69 lead four minutes deep.
The Coroners valiantly battled as the half progressed and trailed 116-80 following Hulk’s eight-point power jam with 17:30 remaining. The Friends sealed the victory with a mid-period 39-2 stretch run, punctuated by Mailbox’s 13-point power jam that gave CWF a 155-82 advantage with 12:35 left.
Double-digit jams from the Coroners’ Will and Magnum kept the final differential respectable, but the stubborn Central West Friends’ defense kept the Coroners’ total point production similar to the first period. The CWF outscored the Coroners, 102-69, in the second period en route to the 184-138 victory and netted the franchise its second win of the season.
Mailbox finished the evening with 128 points for the Friends, who look to continue its winning ways against second-place Raiders of Forest Park (1-1) on Saturday, January 23 at Midwest Sport Hockey.
Magnum P.I.M.P. topped the Coroners (0-2) with 63 points. The team is idle until February and looks to get back into the Turf Wars championship hunt.
CENTRAL WEST FRIENDS (184): Mailbox 128, Fruit Wallup 27, Monster Jam 19, The Great Stromboli 8, Poppa Choppa 2.
CREVE CORONERS (138): Magnum P.I.M.P. 63, Indy 28, Jagged Little Will 28, Hulk 17, Irving 2.
Both leagues continue their respective six-event regular season campaigns at Midwest Sport Hockey on Saturday, January 23.
For more information on the Arch Rival Roller Girls, go to archrivalrollergirls.com
For more information on GateKeepers Roller Derby, go to stlgatekeepers.com.