The electricity that could be felt inside of the Derby Depot this last Saturday was insane. The crowd was gearing up for the showdown between our own Bonneville Bonecrushers, and visiting all the way from California, the Ventura County Vendolls, who were playing their first WFTDA sanctioned bout.
The first half started off hard and aggressive, and stayed that way. Within the first few jams, the Vendolls gained lead jammer position and the first points of the game. In Jam 5 we finally saw some points for Bonneville on the board, but unfortunately, the only ones for a while. The Vendolls were playing like skaters possessed, beyond aggressive plays, multiple penalties, with many not being called. To be honest, I was lost more than not––it was very fast-paced and confusing. As the first half started trickling down, it seemed like Bonneville was going to change into the lead, but as more penalties abounded, and resulting power jams, it didn’t happen. In the last jam, Vishus Trollope of Bonneville was lead jammer, but Vendoll blockers were not letting her pass, giving her one hell of a time getting out of the pack. Finally, after getting knocked down one last time, she called off the jam from the floor, only scoring 2 points. The first half ended with the Vendolls still leading at 88 to 68––only a 20-point difference.
As I stated before, the first half was ridiculously heavy with penalties, and my only hope was that it would alleviate in the second half. Unfortunately, my wish went unfulfilled. If anything, it seemed to become more vicious and unrelenting.
During one such jam, Vishus Trollope seemed to keep getting knocked down and beat up by the blockers of Vendolls, letting their own jammer, Fatal Attraction, score 25 points. At the end of this jam, you could tell that she was done, and rightfully so. One can only take so much hardcore crashing onto a concrete floor before you gotta take a breather.
With less than 10 minutes left of the bout, Bonneville really started putting on the heat. Even when they had only two blockers out on the track, they were skating fast and skating hard. Harry Slaughter, of Bonneville, within the last three minutes of the game, successfully gained lead jammer, on top of a powerjam situation. Her skating skills are something to be rivaled, and she ended up scoring 21 points before the end of the bout, on top of the plethora of other points she’d previously scored.
As it is with any sport, there is a loss with every win. The Ventura Vendolls skated away victorious at a score of 159-132. Bonneville put up an amazing fight, but in the end, there can only be one (thank you, Highlander). Come see more fantastic Wasatch Roller Derby action June 29, as the fabulous Black Diamond Divas take on the radioactive Salt Flat Fallouts. Check out more photos by Jason Santti here.