Bout Report: DRG Silvery Tayzers vs GRG Maiden Grrders in Spiderjam. 23rd April 2011

A hot and humid day in Dundee greeted the superheroic battle between the Glasgow Roller Girls "Maiden Grrders" (away) and the Dundee Roller Girls "Silvery Tayzers" (home) in the bout known only as Spiderjam. Despite their home advantage, the Tayzers' powers proved inadequate against the might of the Grrders, the final score resting at 44:191 to the away team.

Spiderjam had always been planned with a Superheroic theme, and both teams fulfilled this to great effect (although the Tayzer's Viva La Derby (42) won this for the home team singlehandedly, having apparently subjected herself to gamma radiation to expand her full sporting potential).

Skateout here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0UxKHyRlcuY

After the kit inspection, and a demonstration of the basics of derby for the newbie spectators, the bout began.

First Period

The very first jam of the bout set something of a theme for the home team: despite proving fairly evenly matched (although GRG's Slain Austen (823.7) got Lead Jammer), DRG Jammer Psychomilly (69) lived up to her name and managed to get sent to the penalty box for her involvement in a multiple pileup during her scoring pass.
Jams 2 and 3 were both power jams for the Away team (Psychomilly being sent off again in 3 after just managing to score in 2!), Sykes (360°) and Hardcore Prawn (88mph) making the most of their advantage to bring the score to 5:36, despite nifty blocking from DRG's Vice Captain Littlest Peepshow (666), Thunder Cat (82) and Viva La Derby.

Despite GRG's Marshall Lawless (42) deciding to try out the penalty bin for size in the very next bout (tumbling over a prone Unprotected Bex (36*), excellent blocking work by GRG's Fighting Torque (531), Scara-leigh (616) and Tarcenic and Old Laces (41) limited the damage done by Littlest Peepshow's power jam to 9 points.
With the next jam called off with no score by DRG's Cilla Block (24) as LJ unable to outpace Slain Austen, the score after the 5th Jam of the bout stood at 14:37.

An official Time-out was called, giving everyone a bit of a breather.

After normal service was restored, an excellent jam by GRG's Wild Oates (3) combined with effective blocking out of Viva La Derby (jamming) by Sykes (pivot), Coco Pox (76) and GRG Captain Venus Velocity (666) garnered 12 points for the GRG, without even a power jam situation.
Understandably shaken, the Dundee Roller Girls called a time out immediately.

Their morale restored somewhat, DRG resurged slightly in the next jam, but failed to score. The eighth jam of the bout, however, saw the most active penalty area yet. Multiple collisions sent 3 DRG players, including Jammer Dr Carnage (T800), to the penalty area, handing a power jam to GRG's Sykes. It wasn't long before Sykes herself managed to commit a fourth minor and send herself to the penalty area, letting Dr Carnage back out just in time to score some points herself! Points 16:60

All these collisions were obviously taking their toll on the track, as another official Time Out was called to allow spot repairs to be made, whilst the DRG blockers whiled away the time dancing!

When we returned to action, DRG failed to capitalise on their starting Power Jam, Cilla Block scoring no points, and calling off the jam as soon as Sykes returned to the track.

The tension was clearly building, as the next jam saw Slain Austen pick up 5 points for GRG, prevented from acquiring more by an impressive block by DRG's Splatterkiller (3) in her second scoring pass.

More musical penalty boxes followed in the next couple of jams, with GRG's Hardcore Prawn first ending up in the box, only to be sprung by Psychomilly, becoming something of a regular in the box this bout.

Next jam, more blocking falls didn't stop GRG's Fighting Torque picking up more points, followed by Slain Austen in the jam after.

With the score at 16:83, the Dundee Roller Girls clearly needed to do something to get more points. In the next jam, they tried a radical new tactic that failed to work in the way intended: despite GRG's Marshall Lawless calling off the jam after being passed and knocked down by DRG's Splatterkiller, DRG continued to play the jam, with Splatterkiller completing a scoring pass before referees managed to get the players' attention.

Perhaps needing to evaluate this exciting new tactic for their own use, GRG called a time-out, allowing DRG to get in some more dancing practice.

Whatever they decided regarding the concept of ignoring the referees, the next two jams of the bout saw GRG returning to a more defensive blocking procedure, first holding DRG's Cilla Block back whilst Chemikill Hazard (LD50) made multiple scoring passes, then managing less well against Dr Carnage but still handing Sykes a massive lead.
With the score now at 16:94, DRG's Viva La Derby hulked out enough to break through the pack at the same time as legendary Hardcore Prawn, but she'd have been better off tapping into the Speed Force as Prawn powered past her to pick up points.

The final jam of the period was something of a brawl. DRG Jammer Littlest Peepshow actually managed to briefly outpace the pack to pick up LJ (DSC01371), only to be knocked back to the back of the pack, so that GRG's Fighting Torque actually emerged ahead of her with quite a lead. Peepshow powered on, though, and some excellent blocking by teammates Splatterkiller, Crown Jewels (67)* and Whiplash Trash (36) allowed her to pass Torque on the scoring pass, and make a second loop herself.

All this was too little, too late for the first period scores, standing at half time:

24 DRG Silvery Tayzers : 100 GRG Maiden Grrders

Second Period
Entering the second period, the GRG players seemed well aware of their commanding lead and played the first jam cautiously, Slain Austin calling off the jam after a single scoring pass and a nice little hop.
Despite excellent teamwork allowing DRG's Cilla Block to power through the pack for an apparently easy couple of points in the next jam, the tremendous speed of Marshall Lawless eroded that advantage and both teams scored points.
The next couple of jams went easily GRG's way, with Hardcore Prawn and Fighting Torque speeding around the track, whilst the DRG Jammers were held back in the pack.

After an official timeout which resulted in a DRG player being sent to the penalty box for an accumulated 4th minor, play resumed with business much as usual for GRG.
Apart from one tightly contested no-score between Cilla Block and Sykes, (and a single jam where nice blocking of Sykes to the floor by Splatterkiller gave Psychomilly an easy lead), the GRG continued to pick up points in single scoring passes, with Marshall Lawless, Chemikill Hazard and Slain Austen all contributing to the pot.

Approaching the final quarter of the bout, then, things were already looking fairly bad for the home team, with the score at 31:129 against.
Worse, Cilla Block had managed to get herself sent to the penalty box at the end of the last jam, handing a power jam to the GRG. Despite some effective blocking from Unprotected Bex and Psychomilly and a huge GRG mass tumble, Hardcore Prawn did what she does best, and hauled in another 24 points!
In her desperation to get points, Cilla Block managed to end up back in the penalty box again, handing GRG yet another Power Jam (after an official time-out due to confusion over the penalty) just when the Home team could least afford it. This time, however, the Dundee blockers did a much better job of controlling the pack, preventing Sykes from passing before Cilla had served her time, and then obstructing her scoring pass almost completely as well.

Still, with the score now at 31:155, it was time for another Dundee time out to restore morale.

Whatever wisdom was passed to the DRG players apparently failed to make much impact when play resumed, the next four jams (including the 13th jam of the bout:
13th Jam, 2nd Period here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5f1RCXXlRsY
) passing with almost no scoring from either side, jammers being fairly evenly matched and unable to create good leads.

Unfortunately for the DRG, Splatterkiller, jamming for the first time this bout, managed to commit a minor and get sent to the penalty area right at the start of the jam, followed over the next 60 seconds by most of her teammates. With only one DRG blocker (Alison Thunderland (18)) on the track at one point, Marshall Lawless easily garnered another 19 points from the power jam, calling it off just as Splatterkiller returned to the track.

With only 6 and a half minutes left in the period, and the bout, tension was hotting up.
While Hardcore Prawn effortlessly escaped the pack in the next jam, a massive fall led to her being penalty binned, allowing Splatterkiller to finally claw some points back for the Home team, although not without getting sent to the penalty bin herself just before the end of the jam.
With the pendulum swung the other way, Power-jam wise, Wild Oates had a rather disappointing time of it, heavily blocked by a Dundee pack desperate not to open the points gap even further.

With less than 4 minutes in the bout, the Tayzers showed a sudden surge of aggression, with Dr Carnage and Psychomilly both managing to score in the final moments (although, unable to prevent some points accruing to the GRG mainly via Slain Austen).

With nothing as potentially balance altering as a series of power jams to rely on, however, the resurgence came simply too late to change the overall balance of things, and the bout ended with the final score:

44 DRG Silvery Tayzers : 191 GRG Maiden Grrders

Thanks to the @DundeeRG twitter feed for providing live tweets which contributed to the composition of this bout report. Thanks also to Bout Announcers Helliverance and Kinkhey for live commentary, and to GRG and DRG for generally bouting and also baking.

All photographs in this report taken with a Sony A580 with the kit lens. (At ISO800, 1/200 second exposure, shutter priority.) They were processed in Picasa.

*due to some discrepancies between the bout programme and the numbers/names on shirts, I've mostly assumed that shirts were correct when the programme disagreed.


Bout Report: Auld Reekie Roller Girls vs Rainy City Roller Girls "Gore-onation Street" (16th April 2011)

The unseasonably sunny (if windy) Edinburgh afternoon that graced the Auld Reekie Roller Girls Twisted Thistles (home) bout against Rainy City Roller Girls (away, Manchester) couldn't have been a worse omen for the away team. Despite this poor sign from the heavens, the Rainy City girls kept the game creditably close, bringing the final score to 92:109 to the home team.

Skateout: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8TRfzvKHno8

First period
From the first seven jams of the bout, no-one would have predicted the final score would have been so tight. Whilst the first jam was a cautious no-score, both teams taking each other's measure, the second saw ARRG Captain and jammer Zillah (555) take lead jammer, and score 3 full passes whilst the ARRG blockers kept Rainy City's Ice-berg (66) penned in. Despite an attempted fight back in the very next jam from Rainy City captain Missy Rascal (6), capable pack work from the ARRG blockers (especially Velosidy (16), Minnie Riot (7) and Juicy Lucy (666) ) prevented her from taking more than 4 points. The rest of the early jams were back to the standard of the second, with ARRG Jammers Zillah and Juicy Lucy piling on the points, and the ARRG blockers walling the RCRG's Missy Rascal and Ice-berg out.

The seventh jam looked like it was going the same way, with ARRG's Blazin' Phoenix (28) taking lead jammer and set to score points. However, ARRG's blocking was more sorely tested than before, and RCRG's Missy Rascal impressively evaded and leapt out of the pack, ARRG's Crazylegs (11) being sin-binned as a result.

At the end of the seventh jam, though, things looked bleak for the Manchester team, with the score standing at 41 points to ARRG and only 4 to RCRG.
Understandably in need of a tactical rethink, and some morale top-up, the Rainy City coach called a Time-Out.

Whatever wisdom Vital Sadistic passed on to her charges seemed to have an almost magical effect. With ARRG already one blocker down, RCRG's Ice-Berg effortlessly took lead jammer; to make matters worse for the Edinburgh team, Zillah's attempt at piling through RCRG blockers in pursuit resulted in her visiting the Sin-bin instead, handing her opponent a Power Jam. Facing a severely depleted ARRG pack in the next jam, Missy Rascal happily took advantage of her good fortune, achieving 3 scoring passes before the 2 minutes were up, for a 13 point gain.

Buoyed up by their resurgence, the Rainy City Roller Girls seemed to up their game for the rest of the period, with Lead Jammer alternating between the two teams jam by jam. If anything, the advantage was still somewhat to the home team, with Zillah's speed enabling her to quickly catch up to her opponents even when she didn't get out of the pack first.

With less than 3 minutes left in the first period, the score stood at 34 RCRG, 67 ARRG.

And then, for the second time in the bout, the Team Captains faced off as Jammers… Missy Rascal took the lead, and Zillah ended up in the sin-bin for her troubles. This was starting to look like an unfortunate trend for the ARRG team captain, and it was catching, as at one point all but one blocker (Crazylegs, bucking the tradition for the bout) also ended up joining their Captain in sin during the proceeding jam. Obviously, faced with such a tempting target, Missy Rascal took no time in racking up the points for an impressive 19 point Power Jam… right before the half-time whistle called.

So, with this last-minute infusion, at half-time, the score stood at a close 53 RCRG, 67 ARRG.

Second Period

The second period continued much as the majority of the first period had, both teams achieving lead jammer and points, but the superlative speed of ARRG's ZIllah and Juicy Lucy often letting them rapidly close down on their opponents to deny them the jam. The Rainy City girls opted for more practiced cooperative play, with both Missy Rascal and Ice-berg benefitting from well executed whips and other assists from their team, and RC blocker De-mise (18) proving an especially effective blocker - both at providing whips to her jammers, and at knocking down the opposition. Despite their teamwork, however, by the start of the 11th jam of the period, Rainy City had failed to make a mark on the home team, with the score standing at 63-90.

Usually, being a referee is the safer choice, but Jam #11 of this period demonstrated that this isn't always the case as ARRG Jammer Referee Cherry Fury was knocked down by an impact across her midsection, resulting in an official Time Out being called. Luckily, despite being winded, she seemed relatively unharmed, although opting to take the less-strenuous role of Outside Ref for the remainder of the period.

After Cherry's unexpected experience of blocking, the falling bug seemed to be catching; the next series of jams showed a significantly higher rate of tumbles and pile-ups, but no particular changes in the score. Less than 5 minutes later, the seemingly inevitable happened, and a block between Blazin' Phoenix (jamming, ARRG) and Ice-berg (blocking, RCRG) ended up taking down multiple other skaters, and sending Blazin' to the sin bin.

As she'd demonstrated twice before in this bout, Missy Rascal knows how to manage a Power Jam, and she managed to better her previous performance this time, bringing in 20 points in the remainder of the jam.

Now, with less than 8 minutes remaining in the bout, the score was 88-92. Two jams later, Missy Rascal finished what she started, and brought the scores to level pegging, 92 each, with less than 6 minutes on the clock.

Unfortunately for the away team, Juicy Lucy wasn't taking this lying down, and neither were the ARRG blockers. Encouraged by roaring from the stands, Juicy managed to take Lead Jammer, despite the best efforts of Belle-Istic (13) and Dollface Diablo (16, Pivot) , whilst ARRG's Crazylegs, Mo B Quick (66) and Minnie Riot kept RC's Whoops C Daisy (1006) safely contained. After multiple scoring passes by Juicy, the score, now with only 3 and a bit minutes to go, was 92-105 to the home team.

After a hasty Time Out for the away team, it looked like the score might swing back the other way in the very next jam, with Missy Rascal effortlessly threading the pack to take Lead Jammer. Unfortunately, she couldn't match Zillah's speed, and called off the jam without scoring just as she was passed.

For the final two jams, despite another Rainy City Time Out, nothing much changed. First jam saw Juicy Lucy gaining LJ, and just letting the jam run to burn off time. Despite her relaxed approach, she still managed to pick up 4 more points (while Minnie Riot ended up in the sin bin). With the final jam an evenly matched no-score, the bout ended with the score

92 Rainy City Roller Girls : 109 Auld Reekie Roller Girls

Acknowledgements should go to the excellent Bout Tweeting by the Auld Reekie Tweeter (@AuldReekieRG ), without which supplement to my own notes this bout report would be the poorer.
Photos taken on a Sony alpha A580 with the kit lens, showing you can get passable results without an expensive kit.