(Photography by Bob Dunnell)
2015 turned out to be a monumental year for the Arch Rival Roller Girls, where a re-invigorated intraleague campaign resulted in top-notch local action and travel team play reached historical benchmarks.
Here is a look back at the past twelve months for ARRG. Click on RECAP following selective entries to see exclusive full game recaps from Arch City Sports.
1/5/15 – In the continuation of a returning six-event regular season for local team play at Midwest Sport Hockey, the Stunt Devils picked up its first victory of 2014-15 campaign with a 171-138 win over two-time defending champion, the Smashinistas, in round three of six. Paced by Bricktator’s 106 points, the Stunts took advantage of early power jams en route to the 33-point victory over the squad that had not dropped a game since January 2014. The purple rollers’ win forced a three-way tie in the ARRG standings, as all three squads sported identical 1-1 records at the regular season’s midpoint. RECAP
2/7/15 – In round four of the ARRG local campaign, the Smashinistas topped the M-80s, 166-151, to break the league’s three-way tie in the standings and improve to 2-1. In a topsy-turvy battle that saw the score tied with 8:00 left, ARRG’s reigning queen pins wearing camouflage churned a 13-0 rally deep, culminating in a 15-point duke over the firecrackers. Brickyard paced the Smashies with 86 points. RECAP
3/7/15 – In front of 700 at Midwest Sport Hockey, the Stunt Devils defeated the M-80s, 145-92, in ARRG’s fifth local event of the regular season. With the 53-point victory, the Stunts (2-1) eliminated the M-80s (1-3) from post-season play and locked a Stunts/Smashies meeting for ARRG’s 2015 League championship finale in June. Bricktator’s 72 points paced the victors. RECAP
3/14/15 – ARRG’s b-team of travelers, the Saint Lunachix, notched its first victory of the season with a 178-126 road win over the Naptown Warning Belles in Indianapolis, Indiana.
3/22/15 – Beginning its 2015 campaign ranked #23 internationally by the Women’s Flat Track Association, the ARRG All-Stars launched its season with a 345-46 dismantling of #31 Nashville at the team’s practice facility in South St. Louis. In the victory, Arch Rival scored more points in the first six minutes than Nashville scored in the entire sixty. Sporting a 139-16 advantage at intermission, the All-Stars started the second period with a 56-0 run. ARRG’s dominant defense surrendered only three Nashville points during the game’s last fifteen minutes and kept the Music City All-Stars scoreless for the last ten. Brickyard notched 145 points in the victory. RECAP
3/26/15 – ARRG’s Shimmy Hoffa appears alongside representatives of the St. Louis Surge basketball team and the St. Louis SLAM football team to discuss “Women’s Pro Sports in St. Louis” on an edition of KPLR-TV’s “Afternoons on 11.” RECAP
4/4/15 – In the final game of ARRG’s six-game regular season campaign, and in a preview of the upcoming League championship, the Smashinistas topped the Stunt Devils, 156-153, with a come-from-behind victory on the game’s final jam. The tussle featured nine lead changes, six tied scores and hand-wringing, late-game heroics. With :40 left and trailing by two points, the Smashies’ Brickyard sprinted to the front for lead and notched a grand slam with time expiring, securing the three-point victory. The defending champs finished the regular season 3-1 while the Stunts dropped to 2-2. RECAP
4/11-12/15 – The Arch Rival All-Stars opened eyes, and pushed its record to 4-0, with stellar performances at the second-annual Skate to Thrill invitational in St. Charles with victories over #35 Arizona (406-59), #38 No Coast (349-80) and #27 Naptown (316-101). In the three-game sweep, ARRG collectively outscored their opponents, 1071-240. Jammer Brickyard received the fan-voted MVP Award for Arch Rival at the conclusion of the weekend. RECAP
4/11/15 – ARRG’s C-team, the Fleur De Linquents, collected its inaugural victory of the season with a 174-98 road win over the Macomb Bombshells.
4/25/15 – The Saint Lunachix saw its record drop to 1-1 overall with a 169-122 exhibition loss to the A-squad of Demolition City Roller Derby in Evansville, Indiana.
5/2/15 – The ARRG All-Stars kept its undefeated streak at Midwest Sport Hockey intact, and pushed its overall record to 5-0, with a 180-142 victory over then-unranked Des Moines United Roller Derby. Leading 21-5 five minutes in, ARRG utilized a 39-0 rally over the next six minutes to set the tone. ARRG held a 152-99 lead midway through the second period, but Des Moines made a late-game push to whittle the differential down to 30 points with two jams left. ARRG secured the win by notching lead jam on the final two rotations. In the b-team game, the Saint Lunachix improved to 2-1 with a 228-130 win over the Des Moines Blue Ribbons. RECAP
5/15-17/15 – Feeling the heat from Des Moines in its last game, the ARRG All-Stars, who had now claimed #18 in the WFTDA international rankings, played aggressively at the Spring Roll invitational held in Ft. Wayne, Indiana and notched up a trifecta to keep its record spotless. Wins over #24 Toronto (230-74), #29 Dallas (220-86) and #43 Calgary (453-89) pushed St. Louis’ record to 8-0. RECAP
6/5-7/15 – The ARRG All-Stars jumped to #14 in the WFTDA international rankings and continued its upward trajectory with a three-game sweep at the Midwest BrewHaHa invitational in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. St. Louis netted a rankings upset over #7 Minnesota (169-133) and posted huge wins over #28 Steel City (369-104) and #29 Ohio (367-41) to keep its record unblemished at 11-0. RECAP
6/13/15 – At the ARRG 2015 League Championships, held in front of 1,500 at Chaifetz Arena in downtown St. Louis, the Stunt Devils’ utilized a 43-0 rally in the second period to secure a 164-85 victory over two-time defending champion Smashinistas to collect its first title in five seasons. Leading 87-52 with 23:00 left, the jamming tandem of Chokehold Chanel and Bricktator, combined with the stubborn Stunt walls, resulted in the uncontested push and inevitable 79-point win. Bricktator notched 83 points in the trophy tilt while Chanel collected 41 in her final game with ARRG. RECAP
6/27/15 – In a non-sanctioned game held at Midwest Sport Hockey, the ARRG All-Stars notched a 287-40 victory over the Naptown Tornado Sirens to keep its undefeated streak at Queeny Park (18-0) intact. St. Louis posted a 143-16 lead at intermission and a 29-point power jam from transfer Harmony Killerbruise launched the second period. Killerbruise finished the night with 120 points to pace the locals. In the b-team opener, the Saint Lunachix pushed its record 3-1 with a 175-150 win over the Naptown Warning Belles. RECAP
6/27/15- Earlier in the day, ARRG, along with the St. Louis GateKeepers, made its ninth consecutive appearance at the annual Pridefest Parade held in downtown St. Louis.
7/15/15 – The ARRG All-Stars, with its 11-0 record in the WFTDA, pushed its international ranking to #11, which resulted in a third seed at the upcoming Division 1 playoff round in Tucson, Arizona in September.
8/1/15 – The ARRG All-Stars utilized a 47-6 second half run en route to a 209-161 victory over #21 Detroit at Midwest Sport Hockey to push its spotless record to 12-0. The Motown challenge was tough as Arch Rival only possessed a 99-83 lead at halftime, but the ensuing rally pushed the lead to over fifty points. Jammer Annie Swanson paced the locals with 66 points. In the b-team bout that followed, ARRG’s Saint Lunachix improved to 4-1 on the season with a 264-160 victory over Kansas City Roller Warriors Plan B. Chix jammer Cupquake unofficially collected 127 points. RECAP
8/8-9/15 – In a Floridian weekend trip, the ARRG All-Stars suffered its first setback of the season with a 193-112 loss to #9 Jacksonville and dropped to 12-1. The New Jax City Rollers utilized a 45-0 sprint off of the game’s first couple of minutes to set the tone. ARRG rebounded on the next day and earned a split during the weekend with its 261-116 topper over #18 Tampa Tantrums to push its record to 13-1. RECAP
9/4-6/15 – The ARRG All-Stars, seeded third at the aforementioned WFTDA Division 1 playoff round in Tucson, Arizona, strong-armed sixth-seeded Des Moines, 241-76, in the quarterfinal round to advance to the semifinals. ARRG possessed a 125-41 at intermission and continued the dominance to improve to 14-2 overall. RECAP. In the playoff’s semifinals, ARRG fell to second-seeded Bay Area, 163-103, and was bounced to the weekend’s third place game. RECAP In the bronze medal game, Arch Rival utilized a 61-0 second period rally and topped fourth-seeded Rocky Mountain, 224-185, to take third place in Tucson and earn the franchise its first-ever trip to the WFTDA International Championships. RECAP
10/31/15 – The annual ARRG Awards Party was held at the Heavy Anchor in the Bevo Mill neighborhood and over 50 League awards were issued over the course of the evening. Bricktator won the League MVP Award, Rock Slobster won ARRG’s Rookie of the Year Award and Prof. Rumbledore won the online-balloted Fan Favorite Award.
11/6/15 – Making its first-ever appearance at the WFTDA International Championships, the ARRG All-Stars fell to the Jacksonville Rollergirls, 149-141, in a quarterfinal play-in game at Roy Wilkes Auditorium in St. Paul, Minnesota. St. Louis possessed a 135-114 lead with four minutes remaining, but New Jax notched a 27-0 rally down the stretch to flip the scoreboard en route to victory. ARRG’s eight-point setback concluded the local rollers’ season at 15-3, which set a new benchmark for most wins in a season. RECAP
11/21/15 – In the first game of the 2015-16 ARRG local season, the Smashinistas upended the defending league champion Stunt Devils, 178-173, at Midwest Sport Hockey. The re-match of last year’s trophy battle was a topsy-turvy affair that was highlighted by ten lead changes overall, three of those within the final five minutes. The deciding one, netted by the Smashies with 1:05 left to play, inevitably resulted in the five-point win. Harmony Killerbruise’s 84 points paced the win for the Smashinistas. RECAP
11/26/15 – ARRG, along with the GateKeepers, participated in the Ameren Thanksgiving Parade, held in downtown St. Louis.
12/5/15 – In event number two of the six-game ARRG local season, the M-80s stormed the flat-track at Midwest Sport Hockey with a freshened line-up, unique derby apparel, updated “nom the skates,” and newfound attitude, which culminated in a 185-139 win over the Smashinistas. The squad, who sported newly-christened red-and-black checkered flannels, logged the 46-point duke and lumber jacked the league’s overall hierarchy with victory that pushed the team’s record to 1-0. D’Manda Flapjack (formerly Ida the Living Dead/Annie Swanson) paced the M-80s with 109 points. RECAP
And there you have it. Alongside these entries, there were plenty of other on and off-track activities that involved the local rollers during the calendar year. If you witnessed it, we thank you very much for your continued patronage and support.
The League is going to be very busy in the first month of the upcoming year with the continuation of the 2015-16 ARRG local season with games on January 2 and 23 at Midwest Sport Hockey as well as the eighth annual ARRG Trivia Night on January 30.
For ARRG, 2015 was out like a lion. But one can expect in 2016 that the ride will be atop a saber-toothed tiger. We know you’ll be along with us for the journey.
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