SANTA CRUZ >> The Santa Cruz Derby Girls’ top two home teams, the Redwood Rebels and Steamer Janes, played an intense, physical game that saw multiple lead changes on Saturday night at the Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium.
Both teams have already secured their place in the championship. Since these teams will meet again in the Home Team Championship, this game provided the coaches and skaters with a preview and an opportunity to make any necessary adjustments for the final.
The Steamer Janes bested the Redwood Rebels, 187-128.
The Steamer Janes (3-1) started off the game with a vicious wall with Beans and Shamrock N’ Roller, who were able to hit out and draw back the Rebel’s jammer, allowing the Janes to start the game off with a five-point grand slam — the extra point awarded for lapping the opposing jammer.
The Rebels (3-1) took the lead after gaining lead jammer for five consecutive jams. Strong partner blocking by Shamrock N’ Roller and Demanda Rumble at the top of the pack helped buy time for Skirt Vonna-Gut to earn lead status and regain the lead for the Janes.
By contrast, the Redwood Rebels’ blockers found the most success in a bracing four-wall at the back of the pack. The Janes lead was short-lived as Ace Wenchura put up a 25-point jam for the Rebels. A power jam for the Janes resulted in yet another lead change. The Rebels slowly climbed back to retake the lead and ended the half, 82-70.
The Rebels added to their lead early in the second half. But Raven Von Kaos broke a five-jam lead drought and scored the first points of the half for the Janes, swinging the momentum in their favor. Multiple power jams and frequent blocker penalties against the Rebels allowed the Janes to take back the lead and win.
Valcohol, coach of the Redwood Rebels, was confident that her team can make adjustments to win the championship.
“I think we need to cover the inside line and stay out of the box,” she said.
The inaugural season of the Santa Cruz Derby Girls home team structure ensures competitive play with evenly matched teams, creating an opportunity for fans to enjoy more derby action at SCDG’s home venue.
**Article by Kristen Garfield as printed in the Santa Cruz Sentinel**
**Photo Credit: Mark Nockleby ©2015**