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Detroit Derby Girls: Bout 6

On February 2nd, the D-Funk Allstars played against the Grand Prix Madonnas in the 6th bout of the 2012-13 season. This was the Star Wars themed bout. Rather than inundate this bout with all the Star Wars photos, you can see them here. And if some of this bout doesn't make sense to you, you can go here for an introduction on the rules.

The Grand Prix Madonnas started out the season by defeating the Pistoffs, the reigning champs. They're the only undefeated team this season, and people might be wondering if they'll just cruise their way through the rest of it. D-Funk ruined the Pistoff's perfect season last year with an upset victory, so I didn't show up to this bout thinking that there was a foregone conclusion.

The Grand Prix Madonnas got on the scoreboard first with a 9 point play from their jammer, Racer McChaseHer, followed by a 7 point play by Lily I. Monster in the second jam. D-Funk didn't score until the 3rd jam, when Ally Sin Shoverland scored 6. Anomaly would advanvce the Madonnas' lead even further in the 4th with a 12 point addition.

The 12th jam ended with GPM far in advance, 57-22. D-Funk would make their first big play of the night in the following jam when Tinja scored 11. It's unusual to score the much when you don't have lead jammer status, but Anomaly got sent to the penalty box just after achieving it and scoring 5 points. After Tinja scored her points, she got sent there too. This jam was immediately followed up by a 10 point play from Lily to further GPM's big lead. The first half ended 87-55.

Just like they did in the first half, D-Funk didn't score in the second half until the 3rd jam, when Tinja scored 7. GPM was making small scoring plays until the 7th jam. That's when Anomaly scored 14 points while Fatal Femme, playing jammer for D-Funk, got sent to the penalty box along with 2 of her team's blockers. Lily would score 9 points in the next jam, and Racer would get 10 in the jam after that. This hot streak put GPM's lead at 135-71, while through-out it D-Funk would only score 4.

Meryl Slaughterburgh scored 14 unanswered points for D-Funk in the 11th jam. 140-88 didn't seem like an insurmountable deficit at the end of the 12th jam, but Lily added another 15 for GPM in the 13th. Ghetto Barbie made an explosive 18 point play for D-Funk in the 20th jam, and midseason draft pick Rinky Hijinx gave them another 5 in the 21st and final jam of the bout. D-Funk's score just wasn't consistent enough, and the final score was 180-127 in favor of the Grand Prix Madonnas.

Through-out this bout GPM's wall of blockers dominated the front of the pack. D-Funk's jammers often found themselves stuck behind this wall without any offensive asssitance from their own team's blockers. While D-Funk's blocker were too far back to be of assistance on offense, they weren't far back enough to create that 20 foot gap that would create a "no pack" situation, where a referee would then invalidate the forward blockers' position, giving D-Funk's jammer a free pass.  This bout was also marked by a lot of penalties. Although none of the players fouled out, Tinja came the closest with 6 penalties.

Spanish Ass'assin, Captain of GPM, along with Co-Captain Rocky Brawlboa:
Detroit Area Dork: What are you thinking right now about his bout?
Rocky Brawlboa: I'm glad it's over. It was a hard-fought bout, but we have been working very, very hard. We've been doing everything we felt we needed to do to get a strong team, and come out of this with a win.
Spanish Ass'assin: I don't think I could be prouder. We knew it was going to be a hard hitting bout, because it always is against these guys. Like Rocky said, we've been working on things at practice to make us better, and make our strategy better. Every time I saw it on the floor, I just wanted to squeeze every single one of our girls because I was so happy, and so proud. They've learned so much, and they're doing it on the track, and I couldn't be happier about it.
D: You seem to have the most effective walls in the league. Do you practice them differently than the other teams?
R: I don't think so. We are known as the big booty team. If we do practice differently, I'm not going to let anyone know.
S: I think we focus on our walls, and we focus on multi-functional walls alot. We like to break it down to the basics; especially in the beginning. I think maybe we're just a little bit more hell-bent on getting it down than others.
R: We all started as rookies together. We've had walls drilled into us since we've been playing this game. We've been playing together a long time, and that's how we learned to play the game.
D: Coming into this, how were you preparing for D-Funk?
S: Lots of hitting girls. We actually were teeing off on each other on purpose, just to get ready to get big hits taken on us, and for countering them, and delivering them. It's what we see against these guys. They like to hit. They get those big eyes, and they want to do it, so we have to be prepared for that.
D: What do you think you got right tonight?
S: I think we got everything right tonight. We came together. We practiced hard. We were focused. One of the things we wanted to do tonight was keep our cool, and stay together, and work together, and just do all the things we've been working on. I think the girls did that. Nobody lost our cool out there, even when we got into some penalty trouble. We came out of it, and it worked.
R: I agree.
D: Do you think there were a lot of penalties this bout? Or at least more than usual for your team?
R: I think for our team, yeah, definitely. Partly because we had a different ref lineup for this bout. Not completely different, but with the new ruleset the refs are always working on improving their game too. We're not at a point where everything is called consistently. Also, when it's a hard-hitting bout, and people are going on the floor, they tend to notice.
S: We noticed some different ones being thrown out there this time that typically aren't in the bout. We had to adjust a little bit to that, and figure out why they were being called. I think we did a pretty good job of adjusting as well.
D: Did anyone get close to being fouled out?
R: Probably me, if anyone.
S: I didn't look at the board. I don't think they were that close.
R: I think I had five.
S: There might have been a couple that were close. I know I racked up two in one sitting, and I'm still not really sure why.
R: We love our refs. Put that in there. We love our refs. We really do. They're doing a great job this year, and there's a lot to get used to.
D: There's only one regular season bout left for your team. It seems like the season is going by really fast.
S: Yeah, it is going by really fast. It's awesome that we're doing so good, and that the team is improving, but it's kind of sad because I just wish we could stay in this season. With the team we have right now, and the way that things are going, I just don't want it to end.
R: I'm just glad we're making it to the championship, because I made plans to go to an out-of-town wedding on the week of the grudge match. Took a little chance there, but now I'm home free.
D: Feeling confident?
R: I really wasn't. I don't like backing out on people; that's the thing. I committed myself to doing something, and I was like, "I will let you know the second we win that I can make it for sure".
D: Are you going to be practicing anything in particular for the preparation of the next bout?
S: The only I will say about the Pistolwhippers is that they've got two new jammers that no one really knows a whole lot about. The one jammer that they've got seems like an energizer bunny that just kind of goes, and goes, and goes. We're going to have to pay attention to that one. She's kind of the wildcard that we'll have to do some research on.
R: We don't have any footage to watch in order to prepare for her.
S: That will be a curveball that will be thrown at us.

I always like getting comments from Captain Fatal Femme and Co-Captain Mad Hatcher of D-Funk. I just refused to leave until they agreed to talk to me:
D: What are you thinking right now about this bout?
Mad Hatcher: It sucks to lose. We were playing with two newer people. Rinky had a really great jam at the end. We had a lot of good moments, so I'm trying to think about those, figure out what we did wrong, and practice for our next bout.
Fatal Femme: Everything that went wrong today, we can fix, but we did to ourselves.
D: How do you think GPM was able to get ahead of you tonight?
M: I think we are in a transition. We're trying new things, and adding some new people in. We just didn't get as solid as we needed to be coming into this bout. I'm excited that we've got a couple months between now and the next one, so we can really get those things to work quickly, and correctly.
F: I would agree. I think we're trying a lot of new things right now.
M: We've had bout, to bout, to bout.
F: Yeah, and not a lot of practice time in between. I wish reffing went our way today, but it didn't.
D: What do you think has to be done to break up GPM's walls?
F: They do hold walls well. They multi-player block a lot, and they did not get called a lot on it today, and that definitely worked in their favor. I think we're going to have to start karate-chopping walls apart.
M: I like it.
F: We're going to have to start physically using our arms like they are. We're just going to have to play the game the same way they are.
D: What do you think you're going to have to work on in practice?
M: There were a lot of mistakes in the front of the pack. People weren't paying attention to what was going on in the back. We could have created that twenty foot space for our jammers, so that they could have gotten the free lane to get out, but a lot of times we just weren't paying a lot of attention to what was going on in the back. So we need to work on awareness and walls.
D: Do you think there were a lot of penalties this game?
M: Depends on which team you're talking about.
D: No one fouled out, but it seemed like there were a lot of penalties. Am I wrong?
F: No, you're right. Like I said, penalties didn't go our way tonight as well as they did for the other team.
M: We'll just leave it at that.
D: How are you going to prepare for the Devil's Night Dames?
M: We always like playing the Dames. It's always a fun game. They're a really fun team. They've got a lot of great new players. Over time, their plays have gotten stronger, harder, and faster. I think we need to take what we did in this game and just correct it. I think we need good, strong walls. I think some of their jammers are really aggressive, so I think we're going to keep up with that. I think we need to get more aggressive.
F: I think everything we've been practicing, by the time we play the bout in April, will be solid. We'll be able to use everything that we've been practicing in that bout. If they win, I'll be happy for them.
M: Yeah, good call. They're fighting for it.
F: They're on their way on the upswing, and I'd give them full respect if they pull that one out.
D: I hear your two mid-season draft picks are transfers from other leagues. Where did they previously play?
F: Rinky first started out at Bath City (Mount Clemens), and went to...
M: ...East Side, and Boomz played for Charm City (Baltimore) and like two other leagues, but Charm City most recently.

Tonight Detroit Derby Girls' Allstar travel team plays against the Brewcity Bruisers. For reasons I don't comprehend it's going to be a bout that's closed to the public (this is why you're not my valentine this year, DDG). It's great to watch these allstar matchups, because you have no idea what to expect, and you get to see a lot of creative derby names you've never heard of. The best the public can get is a live play-by-play being broadcasted on (cue the "wah-wah" trombone sound effect). Woodward Avenue Brewers will be featuring this broadcast tonight while their Bout Stout Release Party is going on. They created an 8.5% alcohol volume Russian Imperial Stout in DDG's honor, and will be selling them for $3 a pint.

All photos by Dan Bachorik

This post written by:
I'm a dork, I live in the Detroit area, and sometimes I take blurry photos on an outdated camera