The Gorge Roller Girls jumped up the competition ladder last weekend at Spokarnage, a double elimination women’s Flat Track Derby Association (WFTDA) tournament, and left with a 3-2 overall record, impressing everyone along the way.
Against a field of 20 teams spanning across the Northwest Territories, including two groups from Canada, the GRG team reeled off wins over Apple City, Atomic City and the Hermiston Smashers by margins of 295-202.
Although just two months since celebrating its first year of existence, GRG more than held their own, with one loss by 19 points and the other by 62 points against a Hellgate squad that earned an elimination-day berth on that Sunday.
According to head coach Yo-Duh, the GRG exceeded expectations, and were the talk of the tournament.
“No one could believe we were only a year old,” he said. The Gorge Roller Girls defeated Hermiston Melon Smashers (85-76), Atomic City Rollergirls (80-68), and Apple City Roller Derby (130-58).
The GRG crew hung in there, even after the travel team captain, Ophelia Fury, injured her knee during their fourth game in the tournament, against Atomic City, and had to sit out for the remainder of the tournament.
“The main thing about this tournament is that it gives the team a chance to see how we compare to the other leagues in our region,” said coach Yo-Duh. “Playing five games in two days, and watching all of the other games, was a great learning experience. It was intense and a complete blast.”
The Gorge Roller Girls home teams will hit the flat track once again at 6 p.m. versus Hood River on Saturday, May 11 at Hood River Valley High School.
The River Reapers will take on the Cherry Bombers to determine which local team is the dominant derby force in the Columbia Gorge.
As the final bout in the Gorge Roller Girls’ home season, this event is the last chance to see the teams compete locally.
After this bout, the roller derby travel season takes the teams to competitions in Idaho, Washington, and places beyond.
At next weekend’s match, the doors open at 5 p.m. and action starts at 6 p.m.
General admission tickets are available for $10 online and $10 at the door.
For information on this event or to volunteer your time at the ticket booth or concession stands, go to www.gorgerollergirls.com.