Ohio Extends Neighborly Welcome to Gem City
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Ohio Extends Neighborly Welcome to Gem City

Fresh off a successful tournament weekend in Canada, Ohio Roller Derby returns to their home track in Columbus with an improved 4-1 season record to welcome neighboring league Gem City Roller Derby (Dayton, OH) on Saturday, May 11th for one of the most eagerly anticipated games of the season.

Despite their close proximity, the two A teams have not played one another in a decade, meeting twice in 2009 with entirely different rosters and under a very different WFTDA rule set. Gang Green and the Gem City B team, the Violet Femmes, sparred more recently in September 2014, with Gang Green emerging victorious.

In the years since, Gem City has been on a steady upward trajectory, boasting nearly undefeated seasons for the past three years. The Purple Reign were in position to make a run for their first postseason appearance at the North America East Continental Cup in 2018, but they were forced to cancel the deciding game against Toronto on the final day of the WFTDA regular season due to unsafe track conditions. Eager to prove that they’re up to the challenge, they have scheduled an ambitious but well-paced season and are currently 2-3. Kicking things off with an early February loss to Naptown Roller Derby, they followed up with a solid victory against Cincinnati Rollergirls later that month. After two losses at the March Badness invitational against Columbia Roller Derby and the Oklahoma Victory Dolls, the Purple Reign regrouped and steamrolled higher-ranked Charm City Roller Girls in late April.

Following their visit to Columbus, they will join Ohio at the Midwest BrewHaHa tournament and face stiff competition from Tri-City Roller Derby, DC Rollergirls, and tournament hosts Brewcity Bruisers before finishing the season with back-to-back home games against Royal City Roller Derby and Blue Ridge Rollergirls.

Doors at the Ohio Expo Center open to the public at 4 p.m.; the Ohio Roller Derby All Stars will take on the Gem City Roller Derby Purple Reign at 5 p.m., followed by Ohio Roller Derby Gang Green versus the GCRD Violet Femmes around 7 p.m. Individual tickets and group sales are available online through Friday, May 10th. Given the close geographical proximity of the teams, this game is likely to sell out—don’t risk missing out on all the hard-hitting action! For more event information (venue, parking, etc.), please visit our upcoming games information.

Photo by Jammer Line.