St. Louis’ internationally-recognized women’s flat-track faction, Arch Rival Roller Derby, is preparing for a competitive dual docket in Oakland, California this weekend.
The ARCH All-Stars, currently ranked fifth internationally by the Women’s Flat Track Derby Association (WFTDA), compete at the Golden Bowl Invitational at the home track of Bay Area Roller Derby. They have a Friday Flight against the #13 Bay Area All-Stars and a Saturday late-night showdown with #4 Denver slotted.
ARCH (1-2) launched their 2018 campaign at the Big O Invitational in early-May and netted an impressive 227-110 victory over then-eighth-ranked Montreal that opened eyes.
Even though a pair of setbacks was also handed to them during the weekend, the ensuing efforts against defending WFTDA champ Victorian (211-157) and 2017 runner-up Rose City (240-126) certainly resulted in positive trajectory and that enthusiasm is projected to propel the team at Golden Bowl.
“With Big O, it was all about the journey,” reflected ARCH co-captain Bricktator. “The first game was trying to get our rhythm back into place so we could do what we wanted to do. That definitely started to come together against Montreal and especially against Victorian, where we were just really hyped and building each other up and then taking it to them.”
Alongside the co-captain, ARCH jamming is paced by Annie Swanson, Psychokid D’ Freakout and The Jukes on You while starting blockers Smarty McFly, Shear-Ra Powers, Cloak N’ Drag-Her, Vicious Van GoGo, Jamheiser Bush, Kayla Woodward, Grant, LuxFurious, Hero-Shima, Pegassas and Fletcher lay down the foundation.
ARCH’s Friday opponent at 4 p.m. Pacific (6 p.m. Central), weekend host Bay Area Roller Derby, is currently ranked thirteenth by the WFTDA and have been extremely busy in the early stages of interleague play with a 2-4 record. Many of those setbacks were against higher-ranked leagues. A 224-184 mid-May win over #21 Tampa has been the high point of their season.
“The team has changed a lot over the last few years but they are still a solid team that likes to play a different type of strategy,” said Bricktator of the league that she personally launched her derby career with in 2012. “So we’re really going to be mindful of how they play and how it doesn’t mess with our ability to execute.”
The Mile High Club (1-2) suffered similar Big O setbacks to Victorian (219-155) and Rose City (231-146) at that aforementioned invitational but their 261-128 shellacking of then-fourth-ranked Angel City that weekend provided a potential barometer of assessment.
Arch Rival and Denver have split the last two games held against each other and the historical record, which dates back to August 2013, is an even 2-2 between the pair.
“We have some wins against them and some losses against them, so it’s always an interesting game where styles are a little bit different,” said Bricktator. “So when we match up, you really never know what’s going to happen. We’ve been studying them and we’re ready to take it to them.”
This event marks the final play from Arch Rival before the governing body releases their final set of rankings that determine future post-season placement. St. Louis’ goal this weekend is to claim a pair of dominated dukes and surge towards solid positioning within the upcoming playoff brackets.
“It really takes the whole team to elevate to the number five spot,” said the co-captain of her sistren.”It’s not just one or two people. I think that the hard work that we’ve been putting in to our training, both on-skates and off-skates, and then just the camaraderie that we have is essential to having a good team and an enjoyable experience.”
Live online coverage of the event for free can be found at Bay Area Derby’s You Tube link.
For more information on ARCH, go to their official website.
Arch Sports Media will have a recap of ARCH’s performance at the Golden Bowl posted on Sunday.