The 2017 Golden Bowl Invitational will showcase the Bay Area Derby Travel Team’s newly updated All Stars roster as they enter their 12th season ranked 22 in the WFTDA. BAD’s fresh line-up, noticeably dominated by prior season veterans and rounded with recent league transfers, will utilize defense-centric packs with a “respect all, fear none” attitude. The Bay Area All Stars will wear black and white uniforms accented with gold along with their new signature gold chrome S1 helmets as they take the track in games against WFTDA charter teams from Boston, Tampa, and Vancouver throughout the weekend. Tune into BADtv for the free online broadcast June 16 – 18!
It’s that time of year again. Top skaters throughout Bay Area Derby have come together to create the 2017 Bay Area Travel Team. Our travel team is comprised of the All-Stars (WFTDA charter skaters) and Team Gold (B-level skaters). Last year, Team Gold racked up a 4-0 winning season against tough competition. The Bay Area B squad amassed two wins against the Sacred City Derby Girls, a 28 point victory against Santa Cruz, and a solid win against Arizona Roller Derby’s Phoenix Rising. The All-Stars went 4-4 in the regular season and 1-2 at the Division One WFTDA Playoffs in Montreal. Bay Area arguably had one of the most dramatic and memorable games at the 2016 playoffs against the Montreal New Skids on the Block—hosts and home crowd favorites of the tournament. Montreal won the 3rd place ticket to Championships, leaving the BAD All Stars to close the chapter on their 2016 story.
No longer skating with the All Stars are wily jammers, Skrappie, who is pursuing higher education in medicine, and Huck Sinn, who has refocused her derby interests on coaching and blocking for the Oakland Outlaws. Team captain Brawllen Angel noted that “the wiry jamming and tongue-in-cheek wit from our ‘kid brother’ will always be missed.” Other team losses include skaters from the All Stars and Team Gold rosters: Mean Burrito, Ames to Maim, Biggie Brawls, Domme Juan, Korn Holy-O, and Chasing Amy. The biggest news for the 2017 team are recent transfers of note. Stef Mainey, previously on London Rollergirls, and Cassie Beck aka Raven Evergore, previously of Rat City Rollergirls, have both made the Golden City their new home. Additionally, the 4closer, formerly of Sacred City Derby Girls, has joined the BAD All Stars’ jamming rotation. New to the team, former speed skater Dani Rueda has been making moves on the San Francisco Shevil Dead since 2016 as Danymite and living up to her derby name as Brawllen Angel describes her as a “firecracker of a jammer.”
Brawllen Angel and Murderyn Monroe are most looking forward to hosting the 2017 Golden Bowl next month. Teams from near and far will travel to the Bay Area for an exciting weekend of competitive WFTDA roller derby. The All Stars will play teams from Vancouver, Tampa, and Boston all which will be streamed live on BADtv.
Despite unfortunate player injuries and mid-season retirements, the Berkeley Resistance persevered with a smaller roster and took the title of BAD Season Champs for the second year in a row. In 2016, skaters stepped into new roles and pushed themselves individually. In 2017, the team plans to build upon those skills and hone a team culture filled with hard work and derby love. One thing is for certain– no one is underestimating Berkeley this year.
2016 Home Record: 3-1, 1st Place
All-time League Record: 11-12
Player Losses: #4 Joss Hole, #10 Foxy Throwdown, #30 Mad M. Barbrawl, #31 Frightmare, #43 Jambee, #137 KillA Beezy
Player Additions: #13 Stef Mainey, #707 Killer Kapowski, #785 Yosemighty
Berkeley saw a few changes in their 2016 roster, including the loss of six skaters. Due to commitments outside of derby (there’s life outside of derby?) longtime Berkeley skaters, Joss Hole and Mad M. Barbrawl, both took leaves of absences which transitioned to retirements. The ever acrobatic and smiley blocker, Jambee, took some time away from roller derby to focus on other pursuits. Foxy Throwdown and KillA Beezy, two tall blocking forces, also took their BAD departure after the 2016 championship. The Resistance’s only hit to their jammer rotation was losing Frightmare, former Berkeley coach, first to a mid-season injury last year and then, this year, to ShEvil Dead. According to Dirty Lil Trick, “Frightmare is Dead to us.” #dadjoke
This year, co-coaches Pomba and Dirty Lil Trick plan on leading the team to a third successive league championship by pushing the team to new heights with advanced strategy while reinforcing the importance of fundamentals and team culture which the Resistance spent the past few years developing. That means fans will still see unrelenting defensive packs led by pivots, Pomba and Dirty Lil Trick, rounded out with solid blockers such as veteran Gretchen Vomette, Shenghis Khan, Illuminaughty, Rosie Cheeks, and Hines. Stef Mainey, new to BAD but not new to derby (so we’ve heard), joins the Resistance as a blocker who could possibly don the pivot or jammer hat if needed. Killer Kapowski is also a new addition to the team and while she may not be as experienced she makes up for it with determination, hard work, and an eagerness to learn.
The usual three pink-clad suspects will be wearing the star: experienced and powerful seam buster Brawllen Angel, wily and constantly evolving April Bloodgate, and ever patient and sneaky Chasing Amy. New draftee Yoesmighty is joining Berkeley’s jammer rotation and will no doubt pick up some tips and tricks from her talented teammates.
Despite not even filling out a full game roster of fourteen skaters, the Berkeley baker’s dozen is a strong team jam-packed with skill and determination. “This group feels like family and we all skate for each other,” Pomba confirms. Continuing a trend from years past, the Resistance does not believe they have one star player but rather their success is drawn from each and every player who brings something different to the track. Their individual skills cannot be denied but the team focuses on working as a cohesive unit.
The Berkeley Resistance is putting plenty of track time in before their first BAD game for the 2017 team to gel. March 11, they traveled to Santa Cruz to take on the Boardwalk Bombshells and April 8-9 they can be seen in down in LA playing three games in Angel City’sTinseltown Showdown. They play the Richmond Wrecking Belles in a closed bout at BAD HQ on April 22 which fans can follow along via BADtv or Twitter. Come out and cheer for Berkeley at their next public bout on May 13 against the Oakland Outlaws at the Station. Check out the discounted BAD Deal which gets you general admission access to all remaining games at the Station (Oakland) AND Champs at the Craneway Pavilion (Richmond).
Saturday night saw a rematch between the two teams who played for third at the end of 2015. Last October, the Richmond Wrecking Belles won the battle for third despite the San Francisco ShEvil Dead coming in with a victory in their previous meeting in August. Fans of both teams knew this game could go either way. Though Richmond won in their last match-up, the Belles were coming into the game with a very short roster of 11 skaters with ShEvil determined to reclaim a victory.
As expected, the game started with an intense and contentious shift. Richmond jammer #20 Eva Menace nabbed lead in the first jam but was sent to the box during her scoring pass which allowed ShEvil’s jammer, #212 Xpress Lane Jane, to pick up some points as well. At the end of the first two minutes, the score was 14 – 10 in Richmond’s favor. In the next jam, #22 Jirsa attempted to drive up the score for Richmond and was awarded 15 points. Meanwhile, ShEvil pivot, #29 Spiller, received a star pass from #89 Mean Burrito and was able to pick up 9 points of her own, putting the score at 29 – 19 Richmond. After an exciting and close start, Richmond took control in the third jam and didn’t look back. Over the next twelve jams, Richmond was awarded lead jammer status ten times which allowed them to steadily put up points and keep ShEvil to just 7 points by strategically calling off jams. In the fourteenth jam, Jirsa put her team solidly in the lead by scoring 19 unanswered points in a power jam against Mean Burrito, putting the score at 81 – 27. But the Zombies would not be thwarted so easily. ShEvil retaliated by tightening their defense and received an offensive boost of their own when #61 Pressure Cooker scored 13 points in one jam. At halftime, the score stood at 108 – 60 with Richmond in the lead.
The second half started just like the first with both teams scoring at a similar pace. In the first five jams, Richmond managed to score 10 points while ShEvil picked up 9, which did little to change the score differential. Although Pressure Cooker had another 13 point jam, Richmond jammers #11 Lex Pistol and #925 Sterling Archer both had a couple of multiple scoring pass jams, padding their lead at 172 – 98. A little more than halfway through the second period, Richmond ran into some penalty trouble when Sterling Archer received three penalties as a jammer, which spanned a period of two jams and resulted in her fouling out of the game. Here, ShEvil pulled out all the stops and made a valiant effort to close the point spread. However, Richmond’s formidable defense forced a jammer cut on Pressure Cooker, and after returning to the track, she passed the star to pivot Sweet Sherry Pie who picked up four points. The next jam began with a power start for Gori Spelling, who took the opportunity to rack up a grand slam. As time ran down on the game clock, Richmond claimed the win with a score of 181 – 115.
The highest scoring jammer by far for ShEvil was All-Stars team member Pressure Cooker. With 60 points, she scored more than half the total points for her team. Xpress Lane Jane was the second highest ShEvil scorer with 23 points in thirteen jams.
Richmond employed an interesting tactic for this game by rostering two hybrid players who split jamming duties between the halves. For the first half, blocker Jirsa wore the star and in the second half she switched places with Sterling Archer. Jirsa scored 48 points in seven jams, making her the highest point scorer for Richmond. Eva Menace was the second highest scoring jammer with 46 points in 13 jams.
Richmond’s win was decided by their overwhelming lead jammer percentage. ShEvil combated this by frequently passing the star, which they did seven times compared to Richmond’s two times. ShEvil struggled initially with penalties. In the first half, they were boxed 21 times but they cleaned up considerably in the second half of the game with just 14 penalties. Richmond’s penalties were consistent throughout the game with 13 in the first half and 15 in the second. With both teams having the same number of jammer penalties, the game really came down to the ability to rack up points slowly with consistent lead jammer calls and smart, timely call-offs.
Both teams are slated to play in the next double header on July 23, just weeks after this battle. ShEvil will take on the reigning 2015 BAD Champions, the Berkeley Resistance, and Richmond will play their longtime rivals, the Oakland Outlaws.
Long-standing Oakland fans know that defeat is fuel for the Oakland Outlaw’s fire, which will rage again in the 2016 season. After defeating their strongest challengers, the Berkeley Resistance, in August of 2015, the Outlaws looked like the easy pick to take the BAD home-team championship this past October. But, in a grueling second half, Berkeley proved the stronger team, landing Oakland as BAD’s second place team in 2015. Find out what is changing this season, and what Oakland’s prospects are for getting back on top!
2015 Home Record: 3-1, 2nd place
All-time League Record: 16-13
Losses: #8380 Hazel-Raw, #45 Colt, #320 Sheer Luxe, #8 Fatal Dreidel, #105 Strawberry Killz, # 243 Scratcher in the Eye
Additions: #72 Chop Ramen, #27 Red Card, #82 Brute E. Pie
When asked what has changed during the off-season, player-coaches, Val Hella and Huck Sinn are quick to point to Chop Ramen as a key addition to the Outlaw brigade. Chop started playing roller derby in the Seattle area as part of the Junior Roller Derby Association (JRDA) 2015 champions, the Seattle Derby Brats’ Galaxy Girls, and came to Oakland with five years of roller derby experience already. Her Oakland coaches tell us she’s a sturdy skater who will eventually mix into their jammer rotation.
When pressed for more information about which skaters would be likely to don the star Coach Huck Sinn was hesitant to offer too many hints. Based on 2015, it will come as no surprise to see 2015 rookie of the year, Dreadzilla, and veteran Vee as foundational to the Outlaw jammer crew. Also, look out for sturdy hybrid blockers, Ames to Maim, Esteemed Bun Bun, and team captain Dual Hitizen to take the star. When asked if Coach Sinn would be jamming, she replied with a wry grin, “It would nice if I could learn how to block this season.” It remains to be seen if Huck Sinn’s team will let her block or not — when stars align, you won’t want to miss it!
True to form, a few hard hitters will be missed this year. Despite having lost fewer skaters than some of BAD’s other home teams, Oakland coaches pointed out, “Yes, but Hazel left and she’s equal to about 9 blockers on her own.” Certainly, Hazel-Raw has left some huge skates to fill. Helping to bridge that gap will be 2016 rookies, Red Card and Brute E. Pie. Red Card honed her blocking skills and knowledge of the game as a part-time official and on the Reckless Rollers, BAD’s rec league, while Brute E. Pie transferred from the Peninsula Roller Girls.
“Our goal last year was to innovate and try out new strategies. Our goal this year is to really hone those new strategies and apply them during games.”
With Murderyn, fellow BAD All-Star Dual Hitizen, and veteran pivot, Jane Hammer, the Outlaws have strong anchors to their blocking corps. Oakland describes their defensive ambitions, “Our goal last year was to innovate and try out new strategies. Our goal this year is to really hone those new strategies and apply them during games.” With three formidable track leaders, the hybrid jammer-blockers, and returning blockers Val Hella, Bully Elliott, Mary Prankster, Bella Bomber and Imelda Snarkos, it will be tough for the other teams to find a chink in the Outlaws’ armor.
Oakland has already played an early game this year, helping the Humboldt Redwood Rollers open their season on January 30th. The Outlaws nailed the win, 280-75. “It enabled us to gel as a team, reassure ourselves that we still knew how to play derby after the off season and to bring new teammates into the fold,” says the captain, “We were able to execute strategy and test some new communication styles as well as have fun with our team given the low pressure of an away game.” That pressure will ratchet back up in March as the home season opens with the Outlaws facing a revamped ShEvil Dead team.
#410 Ames to Maim || #215 Bella Bomber || #82 Brute E. Pie || #5678 Bully Elliot || #72 Chop Ramen || #333 Dreadzilla || #29 Dual Hitizen || #42 Esteemed Bun Bun || #10 Huck Sinn || #63 Imelda Snarkos || #777 Jane Hammer || #64 Mary Prankster || #7 Murderyn Monroe || #27 Red Card || #40 Val Hella || #33 Vee
OAKLAND, CA –Today Bay Area Derby (BAD) drops the dots and ‘G’ effectively removing ‘Girls’ and the flourishy punctuation from their name. The change from “B.ay A.rea D.erby Girls” to “Bay Area Derby” is a key step in the evolution of the Bay Area’s premiere flat track roller derby league. The new name reflects the diversity of the community to include the wide variety of members and supporters who represent the league.
“It’s one of the steps we decided to take towards updating our overall league image,” says Frightmare, the 2016 BAD PR Manager. “Truthfully, being called ‘girls’ hasn’t resonated with many of the league members – skaters, officials and volunteers alike – for quite some time.” BAD’s updated gender policy, voted into action by the league at the end of 2014, additionally promotes broad inclusiveness based on self-identification of its skater members. The Women’s Flat Track Derby Association, of which Bay Area Derby is a founding member, recently publicized broadened protections for athlete gender identity, emphasizing the importance of this sort of progressive policy and inclusive language.
As the league reaches for new heights of athletic excellence and continues reppin’ roller derby all over the world, they may have dropped the ‘G’, but they’re still BAD.