Junction City Trainwrecks vs. Colorado Rock'n Rollers. Photo: Chris Bojanower
Ogden is far away. Like, super far. Especially when you are a West Side, Salt Lake-ian like me, going that far north you realize how much of a valley girl (never thought I’d use those words to describe myself) you truly are. Plus, when you’re directionally challenged like me, and even have (multiple) navigation apps on your handy dandy smartphone that are yelling at you in their little robot-lady voices, you still end up getting off the wrong exit on the freeway. Once I eventually found the proper exit and exhibit hall at the Golden Spike Event Center, I felt more at ease seeing some familiar faces, girls in fishnets, booty shorts and skates.
Roller derby girls love a good charity organization, and this game was no exception. It was Military Appreciation night as the Junction girls supported our troops with buy one get one ticket with military ID, and donations for the Wounded Veterans Fund.
As the game started off, Junction dominated the first two bouts, taking lead jammer and the first 8 points of the game. Castle jammer Lulu Wonderoo, brought in the first 4 points for the Rollers in the third jam, only to be overshadowed by Trainwrecks jammer, Pickle, in the next jam, as she brought in her first high-scoring jam of the night, with 20 points. The game continued on in that fashion, with Junction maintaining their lead, and quite impressively so. Using a good dual offense and defense strategy, applying the “hit it and quit it” tactic, and taking advantage of every power jam, their lead over Colorado kept increasing and increasing, ending the first half at a score of 133-56, a 77 point lead.
After refreshing my beer (yay sponsors!) and a show from Clearfield High’s JROTC Color Guard, the second half began much like the first with the Trainwrecks taking dominance and raking in point after point--seeming to maintain the lead jammer status.
A few minutes into the second half, though, Castle skater, Bling Sling, seemed to have hurt her leg during a jam, stopping play for a moment while the onsite medical team helped her. Roller derby is a damn tough sport, they see their fair share of injuries, everything from a massively bruised ass to broken bones. Not once have I seen any skater be wheeled off on a stretcher or wheelchair. These ladies are proud and unyielding, and Bling Sling was no exception, getting up and skating off with help of her coach and others, to cheers from her team.
Resuming play, it seemed their fellow player’s injury ignited a kind of fire under their skates and started pushing hard, aggressive, tight-knit strategies, bringing in a few points, but never seeming to close the gap between the scores. Junction’s jammer, Pickle, brought in an impressive 35 points in a power jam with 15 minutes left of the game.
As the game started trickling down into a handful of minutes, Junction seemed to bring out their fancy bag of tricks, like Malibu Harpy jumping the apex on the track, much to the audience’s delight. While both teams shared their fair amount of penalties, our girls from Ogden rolled away with a win of 276 to Colorado’s 88.
It was a great night of derby, charity and military appreciation. Check out more of Junction City’s newest happenings on their official Facebook page. Find more photos of the bout by Chris Bojanower here.