We knew that the double-header at the Cominco Arena in Trail, BC, on May 31st was going to be a big deal. Boasting 2 well-matched games, 4 fearsome and hardworking teams, and 360-degrees views of the action for fans from 6 cities, Miss Trial was destined to be more scintillating than any beauty pageant. But spectators and skaters alike could only have imagined the fierce competition of both bouts that night.
At 5pm the hometown heroines, RTRG, set to reminding the Valley Brutality whose house they were in. Showing marked improvement over the season, this team is one watch! New skater Saskwatch proved to be anything but ‘fresh meat’, barrelling through a forest of blockers and disappearing in a blur not unlike her namesake. Rumoured to be a short-track speed skater, she joined the ever-growing roster of RTRG jammer talent. But the Valley Brutality skaters were not to be dominated, asserting their seniority with the hits and tenacity they’re famous for (and which removed 2 particularly overzealous skaters from the game for too many penalties)! Harry Rat, a VB blocker, continued to quietly recycle to the front of the pack just as an RTRG jammer was sure they had escaped to freedom. Throwing down the brakes and waiting for her teammates to assist (which they inevitably did), Harry took more than one jammer’s speed to a crawl with a quick dip of her shoulder. The Valley Brutality has worked hard to blend 2 teams into 1 this season, and their work had clearly paid off when the final whistle blew on their 1st win of the season, and a close one at that, 233-182.
The next bout had been anticipated for almost a year – Dam City Rollers vs. Nelson Killjoys. The Killjoys had won their last meeting in 2013, but the Dams have set their sights on the Golden Boot and are not to be deterred. Fighting for 1st place in the regular season, this game started fast with both sides’ jammers fighting hard for lead jammer status, and domination of the jam. Playing with a short bench (10 skaters to the Dams’ 12) the Killjoys had their work cut out for them containing the unbridled power that the Dams had amassed in the past 6 months. Pantsoff continued to knock the socks off the fans in purple as she hunted for Killjoys jammers like a heat-seeking missile, delivering the can-openers and sweeps she’s famous for, while Lady MacDeath tirelessly battered the Killjoys’ walls until she created a crack in them. Meanwhile, Jezebrawler fought her way down the middle of the track, one of few Killjoys jammers to gain lead jam despite the barricade of Dam blockers. The Killjoys employed all their tricks to keep the Dams at bay, but even with bloody noses and battering rams the levee wouldn’t break, and the Dams secured a win of 358-276, establishing themselves (as the Killjoys had done in 2013) as Undefeated in the regular season!
The semi-finals loom ahead already (Saturday June 7th @ Selkirk College Castlegar), the Dams taking on RTRG while the Killjoys and Valley Brutality duke it out for a spot in the championship game! The derby season is at its most exciting ever as we near Mountain Mayhem 5!
- Nicole Courson
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