(Photos by Bob Dunnell – Click on the thumbnails to enlarge.)
(DECATUR, IL) Arch Rival Roller Derby’s traveling C-team, the Fleur-De-Linquents, competed in their first game this season Saturday night at the Decatur Civic Center and claimed a 170-162 come-from-behind victory against the Prairieland Punishers.
Trailing by seven points heading into the game’s final jam, the FDL’s capitalized on a power jam, notched a 22-7 rotation and claimed the eight-point duke.
“It was our first game, so we haven’t played together a lot,” said Fleur-De-Linquent jammer Ultraviolet afterwards. “It took us a minute to dial it in and figure each other out. Once we did that, we did a lot of really cool stuff. I think our upcoming season is just going to get better and better.”
“We had to keep our heads in the game the entire time,” added blocker Rock Slobster. “There was no room to let this game get away from us at all. It’s great to have a game where you’re players have to stay focused until the bitter end.”
The victory over the Decatur-based A-team, currently ranked #190 by the Women’s Flat Track Derby Association (WFTDA), saw the St. Louis squad face character and team-building challenges throughout.
Trailing 3-0 after two jams, the FDLs went on a power jam and with Detta’s 25-1 strike at the 26:00 mark, St. Louis possessed a 25-4 lead.
Aggie Wartooth followed with a 12-8 non-lead power jam that pushed the margin to 37-12.
With the solid blocking provided by the aforementioned Slobster alongside Rumbledore, Goldie Blocks, Holliver Fist, Birdsong, Bruise Almighty, Trigger, Spock N Roll, Quicksandz and Wicked Witch of the Midwest, the FDLs widened their lead to 72-29 with 12:35 left in the half after Detta collected a 10-point strike.
The Prairieland Punishers responded with a 19-0 run over the next six jams and thanks to points posted by Hair Razor and Jessica Rabbid, the hostesses sliced the score to 72-48 with 8:30 left in the half.
In the first eight minutes of the second period, Prairieland rallied for a 33-18 momentum surge and only trailed by eleven points, 100-89, following Malibruiser Barbie’s nine-point power jam at the 22:00 mark.
Both teams continued to slug it out as the period progressed. A 14-14 push over the next two rotations extended the FDL’s lead to 114-103 with 18:20 left.
The Punishers then claimed their first lead of the contest with Rabbid’s 14-pointer at the 16:20 mark and flipped the scoreboard to their favor, 117-114. Razor added an eight-pointer on the next rotation as Prairieland widened their lead to 125-114.
The FDLs quickly slashed at the deficit and with Ultraviolet’s 19-8 rotation with 12:00 remaining, ARCH made the game a solo-point affair, 134-133.
Following a scoreless jam, Rabbid notched a ten-pointer for Prairieland with 10:10 left that extended the hostesses’ lead to 144-133.
With 6:30 left, the FDL’s recaptured the lead with Wartooth’s power jam that netted a baker’s dozen, resulting in a 147-144 scoreboard flip.
Aided by solid blocking up front, Prairieland’s Rabbid snatched lead and posted eight points that resulted in a 155-148 lead change with :55 left.
Heading into the game’s final jam, the FDLs knew that they had to play their best derby of the night if they wanted to start the season with a win.
“I knew I had to get lead,” said Ultraviolet of her upcoming jamming role. “It was imperative. I knew I had to get it and run until we were up.”
Ultraviolet obtained lead out of the gates then ARCH received an immediate boost as the Punishers’ jammer was called for a track cut and was sent to the penalty box.
“I was trying to be very aware, keeping one eye on the scoreboard and keeping one eye on the bench watching for hand signals,” the jammer reflected.
In a mind-melting power jam constructed with the period clock displaying goose eggs, Ultraviolet made five scoring passes that inevitably resulted in a 22-7 jam and ARCH’s 170-162 come-from-behind victory.
“This came down to the last jam,” reflected Slobster of the triumph. “I’m really proud of the team for locking it down, keeping it together and working like they did.”
Ultraviolet’s 74 points on the evening was followed by Wartooth’s 57 off of six lead jams.
“I think we set the tone tonight of keeping it light, keeping it intense and keeping it fun,” added Ultraviolet. “We’re playing roller derby and roller derby is fun.”
ARCH FLEUR DELINQUENTS (170): Ultraviolet 74, Aggie Wartooth 57, Detta 36, Holliver Fist 3.
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