In what is surely one of the most unpredictable seasons in Texas Rollergirls history, the second bout saw the first win since early last season for the Honky Tonk Heartbreakers in the closest game in recent memory, while the Hell Marys continue their season undefeated. Fans were treated to not only premier-level skating by their favorite home teams, but also mini-bouts from the Austin Derby Brats, our junior league for girls aged 8-17, who skated during half-time of both premier games.
The night started as our celebrity whistleblower, Olympian Leo Manzano (aka ‘Track and Feared’), blew the first whistle for the first game, which turned out to be an edge-of-your-seat experience with three lead changes and a two-point differential in the final score.
During the first bout, the Honky Tonk Heartbreakers in gingham bested the Hotrod Honeys in an edge-of-your-seat experience rife with penalty woes keeping the Bar 96 Penalty Box company throughout the game. Both teams played heavy defense, setting up walls of three or four skaters focused on trapping and containing the opposing jammer, but rarely did either team have a full pack on the track.
The Hotrods held on to an early lead during the first seven jams of the game thanks to top jammers Olivia Shootin’ John and Hauss the Boss. Sophomore Kitty Karnage issued the first lead change of the night, earning a whopping 15 points for the gals in gingham bringing the score to 15-19, Heartbreakers.
Rookie jammer Flash Gorgeous capitalized on a full Hotrod penalty box to score 24 points in the 11th jam while Nae Slayer accumulated another 20 points for the Heartbreakers. The Hotrods caught a second wind and held the Heartbreakers at 78 points during the last four jams of the period leaving the halftime score 78-58 in favor of the Heartbreakers.
In jam 11 during the second half, the Hotrods exploited a full Heartbreaker penalty box while Olivia Shootin’ John racked up an impressive 29-point-jam resulting in the second lead-change of the game, 108-91. The last ten minutes of the game saw a tight point margin with both jammers chipping away at the score, bringing the game to 134-123 in favor of the Hotrods with 42 seconds left on the clock. A devastating major penalty on Olivia Shootin’ John gave the Heartbreakers a power jam and an opportunity to cinch a win. The crowd boomed as Sarah Hipel, skating unopposed, rounded the pack twice ending with a final score of 134-136 giving the Heartbreakers their first win of the season. The Honky Tonk Heartbreakers will meet the disco diva Hustlers in the next home bout.
In the headlining bout, the Hustlers suffered their second defeat of the season to the Hell Marys, who topped the reigning champs by almost 100 points. This game saw the return of Curvette, long-time Hustler and captain of the all-star Texecutioners.
The Hustlers started strong, with the Killa Sal Monella putting an unanswered three points on the board during the first jam. The skaters in plaid amped up their dynamic defense, allowing the disco divas to score only one additional point in the first eight jams while Hell Mary jammers Sinnerfold and Smarty Pants racked up points leading to the first and only lead change of the night, 33-4.
Veteran jammer Kat A Killzem and recent transfer Polly Gone racked up dozens more points while the Hells’ defense held the Hustler jammers to single-digit jams. The real Babe Ruthless closed the first half scoring 5 more points for purple, though the Hell Marys lead 93-29 at halftime.
After another hard-hitting exhibition by the Austin Derby Brats, the second half was a more refined version of the first with the Hell Marys defense shutting down each Hustler jammer with a dynamic wall of blockers. Their jammers juked around the gals in purple, widening their lead by picking up a handful of points each jam.
The Hell Mary pack held the Hustlers at 38 points for five jams in the middle of the period while Kat A Killzem, Luce Bandit and Polly Gone collectively brought the score to 38-113 with 17 minutes left in the game. Penalty problems plagued the purple team as major penalties were issued leaving their pack short in the next three jams.
Over the next several jams, the Hell Marys systematically trapped the Hustler jammer and offered offensive help to their own, bringing the final score to 69-165. The Hell Marys remain undefeated this season and take on the Hotrod Honeys on June 2nd.
As usual, the on-track action was only half the fun. We retired our t-shirt slingshots this game — it turns out that the rollergirls couldn’t quite master the technique and opted to work on their pitching arms instead — but we still slung plenty of swag into the stands, and our Best Seats winners had a great time on the Lustre Pearl and Clive Bar couches. There were also a huge number of visiting skaters and ‘derby family’ in the stands, hailing from all over the United States — and the world, with a few of our pals from the Victorian Roller Derby League in Melbourne, Australia, coming to pay the Hotrod Honeys a return visit after their down-under swing last summer.
The next Texas Rollergirls bout of the season is on May 19, when our Texecutioners take on the visiting Wheels of Justice, Portland’s all-star team. Keep an eye on our blog for a feature preview of this exciting game!