(22) OHIO WELCOMES (41) TRI-CITY ROLLER DERBY FOR INTERNATIONAL BOUT
Fresh off their 2-1 performance at Quad City Chaos hosted by Toronto Roller Derby, the Ohio Roller Girls will host their second home bout of the season against, well, more Canadians! After splitting bouts with the #1 and #2 ranked teams in Canada, Ohio will try their luck against the third best team north of the border, Tri-City Roller Derby (Kitchener, ON), on Saturday, April 5th, at the Lausche Building. Historically, the Ohio Roller Girls are 9-1 against international teams, including a 2-0 record against Tri-City. The two teams last met in May 2012 when Ohio was victorious 159-113. Prior to that, Ohio also took the win in June 2011, 131-76.
The Ohio Roller Girls will have the advantage coming into this weekend’s bout, having already played four bouts in the 2014 season. They were victorious in the season opener against Nashville 194-128, and secured two additional victories at Quad City Chaos against Bleeding Heartland (Bloomington, IN) 291-93, and Toronto 185-172. Their lone loss this season was to the Montreal New Skids on the Block 385-158. Ohio will feature The Smacktivist and Kitty Liquorbottom on the jammer line, as both played tremendously well at Quad City Chaos. For their efforts in Toronto, The Smacktivist was named Ohio’s MVP and continues to be OHRG’s leading point scorer in 2014. Blocker Ena Flash is finding her niche within Ohio’s lineup as well after having a breakout performance in Toronto. Having played in nearly 75% of the jams in Toronto, Ena continues to impress every time she laces her skates. Look for her to join Bratislava Bruiser, Lora “Outa My” Wayman, Zee “Loraine Acid” Gulertekin, Amy Spears, and Jesse “Ava Tarr” Fox as a blocker to avoid if you are an opposing jammer.
While this will be Ohio’s fifth bout of the season, Tri-City Roller Derby’s Thunder have yet to play in 2014. The Thunder last took the track in October when they were victorious against Rideau Valley 199-156. Tri-City made their first ever postseason appearance last year when they qualified for the WFTDA Division II tournament in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Entering as the tournament’s eighth seed, Tri-City won their opening round bout against Burning River (Cleveland, OH) 190-174. They nearly scored the upset of the tournament by defeating #1 Santa Cruz Derby Girls (CA), but an erroneous whistle by a non-skating official in the overtime jam left them just short. Per the rules, another jam could not be played, thus causing Tri-City to lose 236-231. The Thunder would go on to win their next two bouts in the consolation bracket against Carolina (Raleigh, NC) 247-131, and Paper Valley (Appleton, WI) 203-169 for a playoff record of 3-1.
Tri-City will feature two strong starting jammers in Ova’Kill and Freudian Whip, both of whom played incredibly well at the Division II playoffs last season. Blockers Fox Smoulder, Aggrosaurus, Preying Man Tease, and Wylde Leigh Coyote (formerly Lezzie Borden) will be responsible for clearing a path for their jammers in the pack, as all three will take minimal breaks from gameplay. Currently ranked #41, Tri-City will look to break into the top 40 by the end of the season in order to qualify for the Division I playoffs. After their bout against Ohio, breaking into the top 40 appears to be a realistic goal as they have bouts scheduled against such teams as NEO (Akron-Canton, OH), Queen City (Buffalo, NY), and Nashville (TN).
In the second bout of the evening, Ohio’s Gang Green will take on Tri-City’s Plan B in a battle of reserve squads. The Plan B squad has played one more bout than Gang Green this season, as they were able to play three bouts over one weekend at the 2014 B-Cup Challenge, a weekend of derby featuring reserve squads from around the Midwest and Canada. At the B-Cup, Plan B soundly defeated Bleeding Heartland’s Code Blue Assassins (288-119), but fell to Cincinnati’s Violent Lambs (330-212) and Naptown’s Warning Belles (227-117). After starting their season off with a victory against Nashville’s Music City Brawl Stars (170-114), Ohio’s Gang Green ate a loss against Toronto’s Bay Street Bruisers (304-94) at Quad City Chaos. In their only other meeting, Gang Green was victorious over Plan B 258-59.
Just a reminder that doors will open to the public at 3:30 p.m. with the Ohio Roller Girls facing the Tri-City Thunder first at 5:00 p.m. Gang Green will take on Plan B immediately following the OHRG/Thunder bout.
Pictures courtesy of Tim MacDonald, Dorn Byg and Joe Mac.