Bruisin’ Broads of BERG

Unless you have been under a rock for the last few years, you have to have some idea that roller derby is making a huge comeback thanks to the Women’s Flat Track Derby Association (WFTDA).

Our local league, the Big Easy Rollergirls, currently comprised of the Big Easy Allstars (A team) and the Crescent Wenches (B team), was founded in 2005 and were one of the first 25 leagues in the nation to form the WFTDA. They spent their first two seasons at Blaine Kern’s Mardi Gras World in Algiers but have since held their home bouts at the University of New Orleans Human Performance Center. This was a little surreal since it is the gym I played intramural volleyball in back in college. “Performance Center” or not, it still smells like a gym.

Given that BERG has been around as long as they have, it’s kind of crazy that this was my first bout–even more so considering I have known skaters and refs in previous years. Saturday, June 23rd, the girls were at their home track for a doubleheader. We were late and only caught the second bout, but the Crescent Wenches evidently creamed the Pearl River Swamp Dolls in a 210 to 83 win. Unfortunately the AllStars did not fair quite as well against the Lowcountry Highrollers in the second bout of the night.

We were excited to cover this as it was not only my first bout, but the photo wench’s as well. We found spots in the suicide seats next to the track and as Tonya was firing off pictures I was busy trying to figure out the game. The first half started off slow–the AllStars kept Lowcountry’s jammer in check while BERG was able to get lead jammer and control the track. By halftime, the home team was leading in a close bout (44-40) and a few things were readily apparent; these were some tough broads, and Coalminer’s Slaughter was the shit.

At the beginning of the second half, I found myself really getting into the game–it’s pretty infectious. I was a little nervous, it looked to me that Highrollers had speed on their side. And sure enough they grabbed the lead jammer roll a few more times than our ladies. It was fascinating to see the teams strategies, but in the end Lowcountry took the lead and BERG simply could not catch up, losing 127 to 97.

All in all, we had a blast. BERG has a few more home games coming up this summer that I think are getting added to our calendar. Maybe at the next bout we can find out why there are almost as many officials as there are players.

Until next time people, good night!