Thursday, February 19, 2009

NEO Announces Home Season

Akron, Ohio (2/14/2009) - The NEO Rock 'n' Roller Girls, Akron's premier roller derby league has announced its home season. The league is currently traveling bouting teams from the Midwest to New England. But their home town has been itching to hear who they will be playing at their 2009 bout venue the Summit County Fair Grounds. That list has been released. Starting off the season on May 2nd, they will be standing up to the Suicidal Saucies, a B team from Queen City Roller Girls in Buffalo, New York. Then they will be setting off alarms to attract the S.W.A.T from Fort Wayne Derby Girls in Fort Wayne, Indiana on June 13th.
The Summit County Fair takes place during the month of July so there is no scheduled bout for that month, however rumors have been circulating about an exposition bout to be held as part of the fair's regularly scheduled programming. This means if you have paid for entrance to the fair, you can see the bout for "free."
On August 29th, there will be the first of two rematches. This one is against Gang Green, the B team from the Ohio Roller Girls in Columbus. This bout is also going to feature an auction to raise money for Breast Cancer research and education.
September 19th sees the rematch against the B team from the Burning River Roller Girls in Cleveland. Then to end the 2009 home season we'll see our home town heroines take on the girls from Assault City Roller Derby from Syracuse, New York on October 17th.
Naturally, there is always the possibility of late additions, but it would appear that these girls will have their skates on for the majority of the year as it is.
Incidentally, if you happen to be on your way to see the butter cow sculpture at the Ohio State Fair in August, stop by to watch the Roller Derby Expo that will include all of the established roller derby leagues from the state including your very own NEO Rock 'n' Roller Girls.
Stay tuned derby fans...

Steal City Steels Glory from Akron Roller Derby League

Pittsburgh, PA (1/24/2009) - The Steel City Derby Demons of Pittsburgh beat both of their invited guest leagues in the bout titled "Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Bouts" on January 24th.
The NEO Rock 'n' Roller Girls, Akron's premier roller derby league, battled Pittsburgh's B-Unit and lost 97-49. As you derby fans well know, 48 points isn't a big spread in a bout and considering it was NEO's first bout of the season with some vet's on the injured list and some newbies getting their first taste of blood, this isn't a bad score at all. The Rock 'n' Rollers fought hard, showing excellent team work, but alas, the B-Unit was just a better team. This is not difficult to understand seeing the strength of SCDD's A team Steel Hurtin'. It should also be noted that as a non-WFTDA bout the opener was only two 20 minute periods instead of the full two 30's; but with a double-header, total time is an important factor.
Bringing us to the main event: Steel Hurtin' vs. the Stepford Sabotage from Connecticut's CT Rollergirls. Steel City kept striking with the hottest iron they could find beating CT Rollergirls 149-33. CTR, plagued by some sick players and a couple of injuries during the game, fought so hard that it was incredulous to see the final score. Pearl Jammer from CTR had some memorable momments as jammer, but it was Hurricane Heather that twisted the fans into a frenzy. If you get the chance, watch this woman skate.
Up next for NRRG is the Naptown Roller Girls in Indianapolis on Valentine's Day. Stay tuned, derby disciples...
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NEO Rock 'n' Roller Girls 2009 Season

The NEO Rock 'n' Roller Girls, Akron's Premier Roller Derby League, has just released its 2009 season schedule and it promises to rock the knee socks off of the Akron area.
The league, a fully functioning all-female ran frenzy of fishnets and fiercely dedicated skaters will spend the first four months of the year traveling to locations far and wide. First up is the Steel City Derby Demons in Pittsburgh, January 24th. Then they bounce to Ohio's west coast to Indianapolis where they take on the Naptown Roller Girls on Valentine's Day (February 14th).
Any scientist will tell you that it is nearly impossible for lightning to strike the same place twice, but NRRG and the Demolition City Roller Derby will attempt to penetrate into the impervious womb of Mother Nature and recreate the edge-of-your-seat home opener of DCRD's first ever bout last year. That bout was just about as intense as they get; complete with a star-pass and overtime. But when the points were tallied at the end of the sudden death jam, DCRD had won. This means two things: DCRD will be hoping to recreate the fanatic atmosphere that propelled their first season into a successful venture and NRRG will be out to exact their pound of flesh. This bout will take place in Evansville, Indiana on March 7th.
With the traveling bug nipping at their wheels, NRRG will head to Portland to take on the Maine Roller Derby on April 11th. MRD along with SCDD and NRG are all leagues sanctioned by the Women's Flat Track Derby Association, although NRRG will be bouting against their B teams. DCRD will be fielding their A team and understandably so.
Then the NEO Rock 'n' Roller Girls will be returning home to open their second home season. This year, Akron's sweethearts will be bouting at the Summit County Fair Grounds which will increase the attendance capacity as well as provide a better environment for derby. The Fair Grounds also allow for beer sales, which goes well with cheering on your favorite derby girls. The home season dates are May 5th, June 14th, August 29th, September 19th and October 17th. NRRG will not host a bout during July due to the annual Summit County Fair, but they have hinted that there may be exhibition bouts tied into the planned fair events which, of course, would be free to anyone attending the fair.
The list of teams coming in to bout the NRRG has yet to be released, but cross your fingers. We may see the B teams from the Ohio Roller Girls of Columbus, as well as the Burning River Roller Girls of Cleveland, as they did last year.
Keep your eyes opened and your ears tuned to the Rock 'n' Roll scream of the NEO Rock 'n' Roller Girls as their 2009 season gets underway.

Bout: August 2008

Medina, Oh (August 9, 2008) - The LeHigh Valley Roller Girls from Pennsylvania were toppled by Akron's own NEO Rock 'n' Roller Girls in a terrifically tense 105-104 game whose name takes a twist on a Rolling Stones' album: FearSome Girls.

The LVRG were ahead the whole game although NRRG were never that far behind. Team captain Minerva Steel and the Killustrator from LVRG were high scorers with 28 a piece. But it was Phantom Fox of the NRRG that took home the tiara for total points scored at 32 with an average of 3.75 points per jam. "I couldn't have done it without all those girls on the other team for me to pass," said Fox, modestly, tongue planted firmly in cheek.

The NRRG had to borrow a couple of girls from the Burning River Roller Girls in Cleveland to help fill out their roster and with them came the derby dynamo Hannah Bull.
Bull kept her reputation in high standing as a frequent flier to the penalty box, but NRRG team captain Amber Vendetta managed to match her in trips to penalty prison.
Bull also had glory in winning the final jam which placed the NRRG one point ahead and into their second home victory. Bull started the jam alone on the jammer line and with the attentive teamwork of her pack was able to cause an out of play situation on the last three opposing blockers. Moving unopposed past them (per derby rule) she earned her Grand Slam which was just enough and just in time for the final buzzer.

The NRRG now sits on a two and two home record and with a roster that has no guest skaters they take on the Girls from Hammer City in Canada. This final bout of the season titled ...And Derby For All, a playful take on the album by Metallica, rolls into town September 13th at Pinnacle Sports in Medina.

Bout: September 2008

Medina, Oh (9/13/2008) - In the final bout of their inaugural season, the NEO Rock 'n' Roller Girls blasted their opponents from Hamilton, Ontario the Hammer City Roller Girls, in an emotional 178-27 win in the game titled after a Metallica album ...And Derby For All. For the at-home season, this makes for a winning record of 3-2, but including an away game in April against the league in Evansville, Indiana, they roll away from this season with a 3-3 record.

Going up against a B-team from Hammer City, the NRRG took a deceptive approach to their roster; a roster that was composed entirely of NRRG skaters, something we haven't seen since June when they played the Xanadon'ts, a B-travel team from the Burning River Roller Girls in Cleveland.
NRRG started speed demon Teeny Houdini on the jammer line more than they had all season, as well as Phantom Fox and Chrissie B. Hynde. They reserved Scarlet GoDancin for the entire first period then added her to the jammer list. A healthy rotation of jammers proved effective seeing the point distribution. But this was not a jammer centric game. The teamwork of the NRRG was the best we have seen all season. With the return of two injured skaters, Suicide Blonde and Taking Names, and some relatively 'new' skaters like Sass E. Wench and Kwik Kyra, one would expect a rookie feel to the pack, and yet the pack was one of the most exciting elements of the game. We saw many whips, assists, jammer take outs and unity out of the NRRG all the while the jammers were raking up points.

Not to say that the HCRG didn't have their moments. The B-Team was definitely fresh, but was assisted expertly by some seasoned skaters like Ivy Rupted and Torinado who were a dynamic team of veritable pit bulls.

Top scorers for the evening were Phantom Fox and Scarlet GoDancin and the highly coveted crown of queen of the penalty box goes to Beverlee Crusher of HCRG who apparently was not even aware that WFTDA created a rule-set much less read them in detail.

The NRRG will be celebrating this season at an end of year wrap party at the LockView in Akron and looking forward to next season which already includes some away games in Pittsburgh, Evansville, Maine and Indianapolis. Stay tuned Derby Disciples and keep your ears rivoted to the roar of the NEO Rock 'n' Roller Girls!

Bout: July 2008

Medina, Oh (July 12, 2008) - The NEO Rock 'n' Roller Girls from Akron hosted the "B" travel team from Columbus' Ohio Roller Girls Gang Green and succumbed to the fortitude of the flesh eaters in a 98-51 game in the bout that took its name from KISS DestroyHer.

After the second period Gang Green had a 16 point lead and one could safely have said it was anyone's game and in Roller Derby that kind of gap can be closed in one good jam. But that's not what happened. The NRRG managed to go down valiantly, but still fell to the mightier team. Had it not been for the fact that NRRG borrowed some players from their sisters in Cleveland, the Burning River Roller Girls, they would have certainly been beaten to within inches of their ego. That being the case, the NRRG team was impressive in that they managed to hold fast against a travel team that has been practicing and bouting together for some time, whereas the NRRG team had maybe one solid scrimmage practice together with the on-loan skaters.

Hannah Bull, on loan from BRRG, was the top scoring skater for the NRRG with 20, which is amazing considering that she had 15 penalties and spent 6 jams in the penalty box. Chrissie B. Hynde was scoring impressively as well with 9, but also appeared to feel at home in the penalty box.
But the high scorer for the evening was Wendra Woman from Gang Green with a whopping 49. With her small frame one would expect that she'd be knocked around like a rag doll, but this skater comes to the jammer line with what appears to be a runner's stance and training. She's fast to say the least and impressive to watch. All but for the jam in the third period where she was blocked to the inside and grabbed hold of visiting ref Great Scott's jersey to help keep her from making a cut track violation, she demonstrated the speed and agility that is expected of a jammer.

Next month the NRRG will take on the HissyFits from Lehigh Valley, PA in the bout that would make Mick Jagger proud: FearSome Girls on August 9th at Pinnacle Sports in Medina.

Bout: June 2008

Medina, Oh (June 6, 2008) - The NEO Rock 'n' Roller Girls, Akron/Canton's premier roller derby league, got their fishnets handed to them by the Burning River Roller Girls' B Team, the Xanadon'ts, in the bout headlined WhipHer (a spoof of the DEVO album). Although the NRRG put forth an admirable last period push, it wasn't enough to take down the BRRG who won a decisive 145-90 game.

The NRRG have been plagued by a series of injuries and were only able to field a 9 girl roster compared to the Xanadon'ts full roster with alternates. Is that a cop out for losing the game? Yes. From this zebra's point of view, the NRRG were bested by team effort and not numbers. The Cleveland girls just had better team work and game mentality. Many of the Cleveland girls were seasoned players and coming from a league of 80(+-) skaters, they had perhaps more practice and preparation. The NRRG are still a fledgling flock in their first season and needed this kind of whipping to get focused on improving their practices and stepping up their effort to contend with the big girls.

Among BRRG's finest in the event was rookie Ida Bitter and don't let her frenchfry frame fool you, she hits like a freight train and is a quick footed jammer. She had the most points scored for the evening with 41 and had an astonishing take-out as she leveled NRRG's B.F. Goodbytch which is no easy task.. Following closely behind was Pain Austen, the Xanadon'ts team captain who scored 36 points.

For the NRRG, Scarlet GoDancin was again their top scorer with 31, but what was more impressive was the triangle of doom that was Scarlet along with Chrissie B. Hynde and Phantom Fox. As the NRRG didn't have the luxury of rest in between jams, these three powerhoused through the whole game. Scarlet scored the most, but she also played that position more. Chrissie had more points per jam average with 3.25 with Phantom and Scarlet getting 2.8 and 2.6 respectively. It should also be mentioned that Scarlet and Chrissie appeared to have a side competition going to see who could spend more time in the penalty box.

All things being equal, the event was a smashing success. There were no serious injuries and the teams have such mutual respect and love that NRRG was happy to be spanked publicly by their derby sisters to the north. The NRRG are hosting Columbus' OHRG B team, Gang Green, on July 12 again at Pinnacle Sports in Medina in what's being called DestroyHer.