Seven weeks have passed since the Rockits retained their championship against the Garda Belts...and so with the fifth season over and done with, the women of the Minnesota RollerGirls have traded their colors for MNRG blue.
What? You thought there was an off-season? Well, we've news for you; results from the Fifth Annual Wheelies, scores from the MNRG all-star games, rumors of players retiring, and a quick report from a trip that the three Twin Cities leagues took to Duluth to support the newly-minted Harbor City Roller Dames.
The Minnesota RollerGirls has been playing for five years. Every year, the players, the fans, and the staff choose the best of the best; those players are recognized in a closed-door ceremony in May that we call the Wheelies. And fans of the MNRG, I can report that the winners of the 2008-9 Wheelies are:
(as voted upon by the players)
Most Valuable Minnesota RollerGirl: Suzie Smashbox
Rookie of the Year: Psycho Novia
Purple Heart: Savage Animal (in the championship bout, Savage Animal broke her leg in three places and is now on the road to recovery) Most Improved RollerGirl: Diamond Rough Hardest Hitter: Vuedoo Prodigy Speed Demon: Roxanne Rolls Best Attitude: Angelfire Takes a Licking and Keeps on Ticking: (tie) Vuedoo Prodigy and Abbie Mischief
PBR's RollerGirl of Honor: (tie) Ann E Briated and Scootaloo
The Towelie: Ice Pack Most Charitable: Ursula Von Doom Volunteer Lover: Suzie Smashbox
Head Trauma Legacy Award: Flora Flipabitch
The Golden Supporter: Daisy Dukes It Out (volunteer of the year)
The Lappy: Suzie Smashbox (RollerGirl you'd most like to fall in your lap)
Rookie of the Year: Diamond Rough Team Spirit: Mitzi Massacre Team MVP: Misfit Maiden
Dagger Dolls Rookie of the Year: Psycho Novia Team Spirit: Lydia Punch Team MVP: Sparkle Ninja
Garda Belts Rookie of the Year: Anita Spankston Team Spirit: Citizen Pain Team MVP: Suzie Smashbox
Rockits Rookie of the Year: Trinity Knox Team Spirit: Frau Scientits Team MVP: Harmony Killerbruise
MNRG Reserves (The reserves are made up of veterans ready to be redrafted to teams as well as RollerGirls who have not yet been recruited by a league team.)
Most Improved Reserve: Ice Pack
Best Spirit - Reserve: Ursula Von Doom
(voted on by the Leagues' referees)
Sugar and Spice Award: Citizen Pain Not So Nice Award: Sparkle Ninja
(presented by the staff based off of recorded statistics)
Best Pivot: Citizen Pain Best Blocker: Honeydew Felon Best Assister: Vuedoo Prodigy Best Jammer: Jawbreaker
BEST ATTENDANCE (all players must meet minimum practice attendance requirements to play. These players went above and beyond.)
Best Attendance - Atomic Bombshells: Mitzi Massacre Best Attendance - Garda Belts: Citizen Pain Best Attendance - Dagger Dolls: Psycho Novia Best Attendance - Rockits: Dudezilla Best Attendance - Reserves: Ice Pack
FIVE YEARS OF DERBY(These players and volunteers have been with us since the very beginning.) Barbie Brawl Candi Pain Cupcake Glam Slam Flora Flipabitch Hanna Belle Lector Jawbreaker Lil Hellion Lizzy the Axe Lydia Punch Mitzi Massacre Norah Torious Rebel Stella Roxanne Rolls Scotty Cruz Wet Spot
Now, you may think that the Wheelies have been the only thing happening. Fans, let me give you the lowdown:
The MNRG - represented by Frau Scientits , Mitzi Massacre , Honeydew Felon , and Diamond Rough - showed up for a special Saint Paul 'Drinking With Ian ' taping on the 18th of April to talk a little derby. Watch for the episode on local Twin Cities televison...we'll keep you posted on broadcast dates. Diamond Rough's shoulder-blocking + Most Dangerous television host in the 612 = goodness. Thanks to Ian and the MNRG players and staff (Optimiss Crime, Brash, and Apron) who made this one happen.
The MNRG All-Stars played their first away game of the 2009 season against Grand Raggidy Roller Girls of Grand Rapids, MI on April 25th. We beat our sister league 86-76 after a rather larger halftime lead of 37-8. According to players on the All-Star staff, the MNRG played a game based off of an evil 3-wide wall defense in the first half. Full credit to the Grand Raggidy players; they worked their way around the defense in the final thirty minutes as we fell into foul trouble...but we bounced back and took out the Michigan team for the final. The Derby News Network posted a damn fine bout recap of the match by our friend Rusty Wheeler.
The Minnesota RollerGirls are part of the first wave of the resurrection of roller derby in the United States. As the years have gone by, we've sent our players to help out burgeoning leagues get a taste of competitive derby. Our All-Stars took a road trip on May 9th to Des Moines to play against the Mid-Iowa Rollers on their home turf. At the half, we were ahead 131-8; we ended up blowing them out, but not without some injuries; All-Star and Garda Belt Angelfire ended up with another setback in her quest to return full-time to the Roy's track; we wish her a speedy recovery. Get well soon, dammit.
Players, staff, and fans from the Minnesota RollerGirls, the North Star Roller Girls of Minneapolis, and the Twin Cities Terrors (Minnesota's only male derby league) all took the short drive north to Duluth to support our sister league, the Harbor City Roller Dames over Memorial Day weekend. Fans, it was an utter blast. The TC Terrors put on a forty-minute bout, and damn, did they delivered. Watch in this coming season for the opportunity to see jammers like Whiplash, G.I. Skooldya, Wet Spot, and Peter take on the might of Husker Stu, Slam Serif, Wernher von Bombed, and the Man-Beast called 'Killsbury Doughboy;' our MNRG All-stars have been talking a lot about their scrimmages with this team of talented men and their few opportunities to show off their talent at the Roy doesn't even come close to telling the story of the Terrors. But the main event? Sixty minutes of derby from some of the best in the state. Almost half of the Bombshells as well as representatives from all of our teams showed for this match. Add to that some amazing play from the women of Harbor City (particularly Slapshot, who I'd pay money to draft to the Dolls) and a great showcase of talent from the North Stars (Kili St Cyr? Betty LaRude? Katarina Hit? Damn.), and it added up to a fantastic time in Minnesota's Northlands. We want to thank HCRD for having us up; the bout and afterparty was a great time to kick back and enjoy some damn fun derby. Also, Atomic Bombshells fans will have missed a great opportunity to see some of their players - Mae Gusta, L'Exi-Cuter, Mitzi Massacre, Diamond Rough, Supersonik, Hell N Ready, Chinese Takeout - play against one another. Try finding the pictures of Diamond sending a player flying through the air on a rough ride. I assure you that it'll be worth the Googling.
There's change in the air. As of the Wheelies, a sizable number of RollerGirls are hanging up their skates or are stepping back to let new players take their spot. This next year will see a new draft; who will be next year's rookies of the year? It could be you. Check out the new 'recruitment' video on YouTube for the hell of it, but if you're seriously brave and damn gutsy enough to want join the MN RollerGirls, show up for tryouts on the 14th of June at 2pm at the Roy Wilkins Auditorium. It'll be four hours of hell that could change your life forever.
Watch for more updates as the summer progresses; the MNRG is working very hard on the North Central Regional tournament; we think it's going to be just about the best tournament that you've ever been to...and we want you there to enjoy it. Tickets are just about to go on sale.
Wondering how you missed some of the fun? As always, the MN RollerGirls website is the first place to go for an event, but you can also keep track of @MNRG on Twitter and the MNRG (and MNRG Fan Club) on Facebook for the very latest news.
Writing from the exact center of roller derby in America today,