The Battle of the All Stars being held at Inline 309, in Hatfield, Pennsylvania had its first day of bouts today. Walking into the venue was slightly intimidating for myself, as this is my first roller derby tournament I’ve ever even been to, much less shooting. Team Kentucky played the second game of the day at 9:55 am. Having to wake up at 7 in the morning just to get to the venue on time for the team meet and getting ready, after traveling yesterday (and only having 7 hours of sleep in 38 hours) sorta sucked. But did we die? Nope.
Walking in we noticed Team Gryffindor — sorry, Team Maryland (they were clad in gold and red matching leggings, hats, and scarves in representation of Maryland’s state flag — aka, they had their shit together). Going into this tournament, Team Kentucky knew their chances were slim given the fact AKA Rogue (We miss you, Rogue!) and ReXXy Dangerfield only founded and started Team Kentucky back in July on top of limited practice availability. In a blow out of 176 to 39, we obviously took a bit of a beating.
However, gameplay started improving towards the end when our packs had great reformation, positive attitudes, and kept fighting. Defense was on point and offense kept pushing — way to stay in it, ladies! A couple star passes to Bambi Thumper resulted in some stellar foot work and all around badassery lead to some additional points on the board. Michonne Unslayable was named MVP in this one — congrats, Michonne! Awesome mental stability in this one, guys! We may have been bruised on the scoreboard, but did we die? Nope.
The infamous V. Diva was definitely a driving force of excitement in terms to play against in our next bout against Team Pennsylvania. Samantha, #11, may have fan-girled a bit when V. Diva walked past us and asked how we were doing. (Love you, Sam!) At 5:45, Kentucky and Pennsylvania took the track to start off the second bout for each team today. Pennsylvania took advantage of knocking jammers out of bounds to take the jammer back several feet before they could reenter the track, which was an incredibly effective strategy against us today.
The thing about this game was the fact that at least we got some points on the board! One of the team’s strengths was not letting any negative energy trickle down to other players — if someone needed a moment, they took it away from the bench — great job on this guys, I know it was a tough game! Strong walls struck me the most in this game — from both teams. Congrats to Bambi Thumper for being named MVP in this one! The final score being 305 to 28, this one may have hit Kentucky a bit harder than expected, but as ReXXy tells me, “Use it as fuel.” You’ll do awesome tomorrow against West Virginia tomorrow! I know it. But did we die? Nope.
In other news, the week started off crappy for Kentucky player Slamus Aran, as her entire skate bag was stolen — which she only found out on Monday night, two days before our flight took off to PA to get here on time. Introduce the amazingly helpful Susan, who started derby city skates located in North Carolina. Susan managed to obtain skates for Slamus Aran as well as derby gear to replace all of her things. Susan is a former skater, and due to the challenge of finding gear for herself and other players, she decided to open the business as a way to stay in the community after retiring, as well as offer an option for the players in the sport she loves.
I highly recommend contacting Susan for any derby gear or even just skate needs! She is incredibly kind and really loves helping the derby community with anything they need. You can email her at Susan@DerbyCitySkates.com, call at 336-608-4767, or visit her site at www.derbycityskates.com.
The scoreboard all day was not a good indication of how hard every single lower seeded team were playing — everyone should be absolutely impressed and proud of themselves for today’s eventful day of derby!