I’ve been a derby blogging slug. On the 9th I went to the Cincinnati Gardens to watch two teams from the Mad Rollin’ Dolls league in Madison (Team Unicorn and the Dairyland Dolls) take on the two Cincinnati Rollergirls’ teams, the Silent Lambs and Black Sheep. The Team Unicorn mascot is shown at right. I expected it to be a tough bout as Cincinnati was ranked #4 in the North Central division and Madison was ranked #3. In the end it turned out the rankings were accurate. Madison’s Team Unicorn beat the Silent Lambs 120 to 43 in the 40 minute bout and the Dairyland Dolls beat the Black Sheep 108 to 50 in the 60 minute bout.
I thought both match ups were pretty physical in the pack. There were a lot of hard hits dished out by both teams. Of course there were blocks made to help out jammers that were stuck so they could advance through the pack. But in addition there were a lot of what I think of as “wake up” blocks – jostling and hits made that let opposing team members know who has control even when the jammer is in the open, or hits that set up the pack to make the jammer’s entry a bit easier. Even with all that blocking, it didn’t seem like there were an excessive number of falls. That’s a testament to the skating ability of players on both teams. That made it a lot of fun to watch! Cincinnati had some very solid individual efforts during the bouts – both jammers and pack skaters. The advantage that the Mad Rollin’ Dolls seemed to have was great team coordination.
In the Lambs vs. Unicorns bout there were several Lamb skaters who took a turn wearing the jammer star, but I’d guess that scoring was led by Miss Print (shown sprinting in the open in the photo below) and Polly Rocket. At the half, the Unicorns were in the lead with a score of 43 to 18. In the second half the Unicorns widened their lead with the help of Harlot Bronte who is a fast jammer and good blocker. The second photo below shows her going around Bex Pistol.
In the Sheep vs. Dairyland Dolls bout, the Dolls shut down Cincinnati scoring for several of the initial jams. It wasn’t until about twelve minutes in to the first period that Hannah Barbaric (shown at in the photo at right -- along with Madison jammer Jewels of Denile) had a 10 point jam to put Cincinnati on the scoreboard. A couple jams later she scored 4 more points to bring the Sheep within 5 points. The Dolls kept up the heat and at the half they lead with a score of 45 to 23. It was no picnic for the Dolls though as Cincinnati was giving some tough blocks. The photos below show Panterrorize blocking Stitch (I think) and Mae C. Stars blocking Jewels of Denile (who I would guess was the Dolls' top scorer of the evening). It seemed Cincinnati was plagued by an over abundance of penalties during the bout. That definitely contributed to the widening of the Dolls’ lead in the second half.
During and after the bout I got to meet several folks including Schwartz, the author of 5chw4r7z (see his bout post here), Erin (another crazed CRG fan), and Papa Razzi who is a photographer for the Mad Rollin’ Dolls. His bout photos aren’t up yet, but here are his 2009 season photos. I'm sure the CRG bout photos will be there soon. As usual, the CRG photographers Jeff and Jason have their photos posted – Jeff’s Lamb photos, Jeff’s Sheep photos, Jason’s Lamb photos, Jason’s Sheep photos. And special visiting photographer Elisa Baker also has her photos posted on Flickr here and here.
After the bout Dianne got a photo of me with two of the Silent Lamb skaters, Fight Attendant (on left) and Cherry Choke. Thanks to both for taking the time for a photo! You can see the rest of my photos in my Flickr set here. It’s great to see a lot more buzz about the bouts on the web too. In addition to Miss Print’s recap, you can also read more about the bouts on the Game Day blog here and on the My Never-Humble Opinion blog here and a brief mention in the Isthmus.
The next Cincinnati bout is coming up fast! On Saturday, May 30th they take on the Grand Raggidy Rollergirls from Grand Rapids. Hopefully that bout will be a repeat of the two wins CRG had when visiting them earlier this year. Be at the Gardens to cheer on the Silent Lambs and Black Sheep!!
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