The Gotham Girls welcomed the Dairyland Dolls of Madison Wisconsin to NYC on August 19th, 2005, for a historic battle: New York’s first ever inter-league roller derby match. In front of an audience of one thousand riveted spectators, the milkmaids from the Midwest fought the GGRD All-Stars. The Dolls proved to be fierce competitors and amid cheers, gasps and moos from the crowed packed into the Skate Key, they achieved victory with a final score of Gotham 72, Dairyland Dolls 82.
An air of tension descended over the rink as the NYC skaters and the visitors from Cheese Country skated into position on the track. As the referees signaled the beginning of the first jam, the pack took off and jammers Rolletta Lynn (NYC) and Jewels of Denile (Madison) sprinted forward. As the two hit the pack, Jewels slid by opposing blockers with preternatural ease while Rolletta Lynn was subjected to a particularly vicious pummeling at the hands and elbows of the high-fouling Dairyland Dolls. In the daunting first jam the lightning-quick Rolletta was only able to score 3 points while Jewels of Denile score 8 of her 29 game points. Despite the Gotham Girls’ tough NYC attitudes, the Dairyland Dolls’ brutal style of play took the Big Apple All-Stars by surprise.
The first period continued to frustrate the Gotham Girls as the Dolls’ aggressive defense had players from both teams sprawling to the ground. The second jam was the highest scoring of the game with Rippin Kittin taking 8 points, but the Dolls’ Mouse scored an impressive 12 points giving the milkmaids a 9-point lead after the first two jams. Suzy Hotrod revved up the Gotham Girls with her 4-0 jam against Madison’s feisty captain, Crackerjack, managing to stay upright and maintain her momentum despite taking a plethora of hits from merciless blockers Pam Demonium, Dolly Pardon Me and Carrie A. Hacksaw. NYC’s Donna Matrix and Penny Larceny took the opportunity to step up with some particularly fierce blocking. NYC began to close the gap in the score, but despite two power plays that left Madison with only three blockers in the pack, the Gotham Girls were unable to capitalize with jams of only 3-3 and 4-2. In the ninth jam of the period, Jewels of Denile returned to reprise her role in the first jam and scored a stunning 11 points to Rippin Kittin’s 6, but Rolletta Lynn pulled off a 4-0 jam against Mouse to end the half. The score was Gotham 36, Madison 42 going into the Penalty Showdown, “Moon Jumped Over the Cow,”Â but Mouse leapt her way to the finish line before Carmen Monoxide adding a point to her team’s score and giving the Dairyland Dolls a 7-point lead.
In the second half the Gotham Girls’ blockers buckled down but still had somewhat mixed results with the evasive Madison jammers. Some determined and at times domineering blocking from NYC’s pack- Ginger Snap was notably ferocious and Chassis Crass tenacious- managed to slow down the likes of Madison’s Tatum Tantrum, Crackerjack and Frenchie and the score drew close once again. The violent pack continued to knock the stuffing out of each other and the jammers and high-fouling brought on a 3 vs. 3 power play, two power plays in NYC’s favor and one extreme power play in which the pack consisted of only 2 Gotham Girls and 3 Dairyland Dolls. The physical strain of the brutal game took its toll on the players and in the 5th jam of the second half, the jamming Suzy Hotrod was thrown from the track and got into an altercation with Jewels of Denile. Even Madison’s mascot, a bell-jangling cow, became involved. His participation earned a team foul for the Dairyland Dolls.
Despite the renewed efforts of the Gotham Girls including 21 points scored by Rippin Kittin in the second half, the Dairyland Dolls had something to prove. As the game neared its end and the Gotham Girls’ hopes of pulling off an upset dimmed, Joey Hardcore (acting as the GGRD mascot) waxed philosophical on the possibility of defeat; “No matter who wins the game tonight,”Â she said, microphone in hand, “the Dairyland Dolls will be going home to Wisconsin after this weekend, so I guess we all know who the real winners are.” Her sentiments were popular with the audience who continued to cheer as Crackerjack scored 6 points to Rippin Kittin’s 3, giving Madison 39 points to NYC’s 36 in the second half and earning the Dairyland Dolls the win with a final score of 72-82.
Before the bout, comic and ventriloquist Carla Rhodes warmed up the audience with a hilarious pregame show that included her puppets “Mick ‘n Keef.” At halftime Cecilia, Lollo and Tanya Gagne put on a breath-taking trapeze performance. It was probably the first time any of the audience had seen a trapeze artist wearing roller skates. After the intense inter-league action fans had a chance to blow off some steam with the Open Skate Afterparty with music spun by DJ Neil McCoy.
Next month New York City roller derby fans are in for another epic battle at the Skate Key as the Brooklyn Bombshells and the Manhattan Mayhem face off for the first time since April. The September 16 bout determines which team will face the Queens of Pain in the first ever Gotham Girls Roller Derby Championship Bout this October.
Rippin Kittin’ (Gotham): 39
Jewels of Denile (DD): 29
Mouse (DD): 25
Carrie A Hacksaw (DD): 6
Carmen Monoxide (GG): 6
Jewels of Denile (DD): 5
Most Valuable Skater:
Jewels of Denile