(20) Ohio Welcomes (16) Detroit Derby Girls
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(20) Ohio Welcomes (16) Detroit Derby Girls

This weekend, the #20 Ohio Roller Girls welcome to Columbus the #16 Detroit Derby Girls for their second-to-last home bout of the 2013 season.  This bout means a considerable amount for both squads, as only one more rankings release will come before the teams know their final rank and seeding as they both head into the Division 1 playoffs.

Both Ohio and Detroit are original members of the Women’s Flat Track Derby Association, with seven full seasons of All Star competition under their belts.  Amazingly, of Ohio’s 91 sanctioned bouts as an All Star team, only three have come against the ladies from Detroit. In fact, Detroit is only one of three higher-echelon teams in the North Central that Ohio has never defeated (Windy City and Minnesota being the other two).

In those three bouts, Detroit has defeated the Ohio Roller Girls 131-114 (2007), 105-57 (2008), and most recently right after last year’s regional playoffs 159-129 (2012).  In their most recent bout, Ohio and Detroit battled through three lead changes before Detroit claimed the lead for good with just over seven minutes remaining in the bout.  It was an exciting bout for skaters and fans alike, and has set the expectations for this weekend at a very high level.

Both squads have something to prove not only to the rest of the derbyverse, but to themselves.  Both Ohio and Detroit last played at the Midwest BrewHaHa tournament in Milwaukee two weekends ago.  Ohio left Wisconsin with a 1-1 record over the weekend as they handled Pikes Peak 387-64, but lost handily to the (10) Minnesota RollerGirls 102-340.  Detroit fell in both their BrewHaHa bouts, but lost to two teams ranked ahead of them.  They started their weekend with a loss to (9) Windy City 123-244, and followed that bout with a loss to (13) Arch Rival 138-216.

Ohio will enter this bout with an 11-3 record.  Paced by jammers Phoenix Bunz, Kitty Liquorbottom, and The Smacktivist, Ohio is a team of opportunity.  In nearly every bout this season in which they have been victorious, Ohio has been able to take advantage of their opponent’s penalties, particularly to their jammers.

The core of Ohio’s pack features skaters Pippi RipYourStockings, Loraine Acid, Bratislava Bruiser, and Amy Spears.  With Kill Basa, Ava Tarr, and Outa My Wayman also performing exceptionally well this season, Ohio has been described by some derby pundits as having one of the best defenses in what was formerly known as the North Central region.  Following their contest against Detroit, Ohio still has four bouts on their schedule before playoffs.  They will first play the (11) Philly Roller Girls, then head to Illinois to play the (32) Chicago Outfit.  Ohio will then travel to (22) Steel City before returning home for the last home bout of the season against Carolina on August 17th.

Detroit will travel to Columbus this weekend with a 3-3 record under their collective belt.  They looked very impressive early in the season with victories over Brewcity (295-154) and Steel City (158-157).  Even as they suffered a 36 point loss to Naptown, the Detroit Derby Girls (DDG) looked like a team on a mission in 2013. Following the Naptown loss, DDG dismantled Tallahassee 357-77 in Michigan before heading to the BrewHaHa tournament where, as previously mentioned, they lost to Windy City and Arch Rival.

Featuring original Team USA alternate Racer McChaseHer, Detroit is equally as talented on the jammer line as they are in the pack.  In last year’s bout, Racer averaged 5 points per jam and ended the contest with 51 points.  Sharing jammer duties this weekend for Detroit will be Ally Sin Shoverland and Roxanna Hardplace.  Detroit’s strong defense will be anchored by Racer, boo d. livers, Spanish Ass’assin, Fatal Femme, and Feta Sleeze. Detroit will miss jamming staple aNOMaly due to a broken ankle suffered during recent tryouts for Team USA.

Gang Green will be featured in the first bout this weekend as they take on Detroit’s reserve squad, the Motor City Disassembly Line.  Gang Green has a record of 3-6 with victories against the Bleeding Heartland Code Blue Assassins, River City Uncivil Warriors, and the Blue Ridge French Broads.

Gang Green most recently played at Midwest BrewHaHa and went 0-2.  They dropped their first bout against the Windy City Second Wind, one of the best reserve squads in roller derby.  They then lost a heartbreaker to WFTDA Apprentice league Ann Arbor Derby Dimes’ all star team by 15 points on the final jam. Ann Arbor will come to Columbus for a rematch against Gang Green on August 17th as the OHRG welcome in Carolina in sanctioned play.

Gang Green will have to play strong to keep up with the Disassembly Line.  Ohio will feature Shred Head, Bigg Rigg, Paige Bleed, and Burnadeath on the jammer line while Pearl Rogi, Texas Chainsaw Sasskicker, Angla Vyle, Elektra Magneto, and others attempt to control the pack.  The Motor City Disassembly Line also saw action at BrewHaHa two weeks ago where they went 1-2 over the three day weekend.  Detroit found success early as they defeated Iron Range 206-182, but fell to their next two opponents, Madison’s B Team (169-349) and Arch Rival’s St. Lunachix (145-302).  The last time Gang Green played the Disassembly Line was in October 2012 when the ladies from Detroit were victorious 155-118.

This weekend’s bouts will be played at the Ohio Building on the Ohio State Fairgrounds (South side of 17th Avenue).  This is a smaller venue with the possibility of a sell-out, so assure yourself a seat by purchasing tickets online at http://www.ohiorollergirls.ticketleap.com.

Photos courtesy of Dave Randall and Dan Bachorik.

Andrew Marron