Leading up to their last bout against the Cedar Rapids Roller Girls on November 10, 2012, the memory of their two previous heart breaking losses weighed heavy on Brawler minds. The first occurred in an away bout in Des Moines, IA on October 13th against the evenly matched Crash Test Dolls. Brawlers held the lead the entire bout and, in a series of very unfortunate events, lost the lead and the bout in the final jam of the game, 148-150. The Dolls were able to score 25 points in the final two jams of the bout when a rogue Dolls skater accumulated her 7th, 8th, 9th, and 10th major penalties combined with an untimely lone Brawler jammer penalty. Needless to say, Brawlers won the after party.
The next loss was dealt at home the very next weekend by the Dakota City Demolition Crew. Seven capable DCDC skaters took the track, prepared to put in work. Their numbers were further reduced during the middle of the second period when a teary eyed MizzChiff was escorted off the floor after committing her 7th major penalty and fouling out. The foul out was the exception as the DCDC ladies skated relatively clean. The Brawlers, on the other hand, were repeatedly sent to the sin bin, leaving them light on blockers and jammers during most jams. Final score: 98-157. Hats off, Dakota City. Brawlers look forward to a rematch in 2013.
Losses behind them, November 10th was their last chance for a win in the second season. This would be the third match up with the Cedar Rapids team, the first of which was the Brawlers very first home bout – a loss in front of more than two thousand people. It seemed fit to end their second season against this team, in a military appreciation bout, S.M.A.S.H.
The bout was extremely exciting for fans; it was non-stop action as the teams traded blows, power jams, and trips to the penalty box. Brawlers struck first, holding Cedar Rapids scoreless the first five jams, culminating when Bruise Hound and pals took advantage of a power jam. Twelve points on the board for the Brawlers put the score at 29-0. The teams nickel and dimed each other the next few trade-offs, until another key CR jammer trip to the box. Bruise Hound put up 15 points, giving the Brawlers their greatest lead of the bout, 60-23. Two jams later she would return the favor and take a trip to the box for a track cut, enabling Flashdance to put up 23 big ones. The teams were within 2 points of each other, when another Cedar Rapids jammer penalty gave Whiz Bang the opportunity to answer back with another 15 point power jam. The half closed with a slight Brawler lead, 79-62.
It was still anyone’s bout in the second half and the Brawlers would have an uphill battle ahead of them. They played short at least one blocker every single jam here on out as the penalty box ate skaters left and right. (I heard Coach Flash was less than happy, but missed his stern time-out talk because I was sitting in the penalty box. Whoops.) Not to mention missing one of their premier blockers in Desmo Destroyher, absent from seven jams after an equipment malfunction. The crowd on the edge of their seats, the Brawlers kept the lead the whole time with Cedar Rapids constantly nipping at their heels. It was unclear if the any of the Brawlers had a Crash Test Dolls flash back, because this bout also came down to the final jam. Whiz Bang, highest scoring Brawler jammer, had just scored 11 points that put the Brawlers ahead by 13 points. After School Special was awarded her 7th major penalty after a high block and was asked not to return to the track. Everyone held their breaths as double threat jammer Toothy Hilt was sent to the box for a back block. Could the Brawlers hold the lead? Dani DeBeato, most played Brawler blocker, forced a track cut on CR jammer Flashdance, springing Toothy free from the box and enabling her to put the nail in the Cedar Rapids Roller Girls’ coffin. The final score: 152-138, queue confetti and uproarious cheers. Ok, no confetti; it gets caught in the wheels.
I feel like this article wouldn’t be complete without some reflection on the season overall. Speaking from my personal experiences on the team, I can say that season two can be summarized in one word: Growth. Technically, this was the second season for only a handful of skaters on the team. The majority of skaters joined the team late last year and early this year, making it their very first season. We have been able to learn to work together and play as a team. It’s taken a whole season, but I believe the Brawlers have put in the ground work for what promises to be an explosive third season.
The Cedar Valley Derby Divas want to thank our dedicated, amazing ref crew who help us improve our game play every day. Thank you Booter, Shiny, and Arand B. We also want to thank our family, fans, volunteers, visiting refs, and non-skating officials. Without you we wouldn’t be able to do what we love.
Interested in becoming a Training Brawler? We have a new group of talent working hard right now and will recruit again Spring 2013. Keep an eye on our Facebook page and right here on our website for more information in the upcoming months.