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Avon River Rollers' debut derby draws crowd, proves home team ready to compete

'Nothing but good energy' at Windsor roller derby

WINDSOR, N.S. — For a team that wasn't sure if they'd score any points in their debut game, the Rebel Belles had a strong showing.

The Avon River Rollers' derby team hosted the Kickin' Vixens, from the Highland District Derby, at Avon View High School April 27.

Wendy Jordan, whose roller derby name is Bitta Badness, was still processing the excitement following the first-ever derby in Windsor. From the crowd to the game itself, she said the evening surpassed all expectations.

“This is the first time that we've played as a team,” said Jordan, who lives in Ellershouse.

“We weren't even sure we would get any points. We weren't sure if we were measuring up against the other teams in the province as it's our first year. We surprised ourselves and I think we surprised the other team as well.”

The final score was 311-222 for the Vixens, but mid-way through, the Rebel Belles held a slight lead.

“The highlight that I take out of this is that we are going to be a competitive league this year,” she said.

Jordan began skating with the Avon River Rollers in January 2017. She's amazed by how much progress they've all made since the league's inception. As a jammer, someone who scores points by successfully passing the blockers on the other team, Jordan said she wasn't sure if she'd ever tally points for the Belles. That nervousness was quelled almost as soon as she stepped onto the track.

“Personally, my favourite part of it was that very first jam,” said Jordan, smiling. “I got lead jam, which I wasn't expecting to, and I got the first points of the game. Actually, I didn't even know if I would ever get points in the whole game. These (visiting) players have been playing together for four or five years.”

For Marjie Lynn, also known as Tainted Shove, the first derby was more fun than she imagined it could be.

“The highlight for me was a personal thing. I was able to perform a move where I held someone back in a way that I haven't been able to do involving my toe stop,” said Lynn, who joked about her penchant for getting in trouble on the track.

“I'm a sweaty mess. I fouled out and I love it. It was great,” she said, grinning.

Lynn said looking around the packed gymnasium, seeing the signs and hearing the cheers was an incredible feeling for the entire team.

“Just having a great big crowd and everybody cheering... my gosh it was fun. There was nothing but good energy,” said Lynn. “I can't wait until the next one!”

The next two bouts for the Windsor crew are road games. In May, they will travel to PEI and in June, they will travel to Cape Breton where they will face off against some familiar faces.

“We had three players who came from Cape Breton to help us today because we had three injured players so we needed enough to roster the team. I'd like to thank them as well,” said Jordan.

The Cape Breton derby players were Tara Noseworthy (Titanium Tankdown), Lindsay McKinnon (TurboLinds) and Emily Chase (Chaos and Scruff).

“They were a wonderful help and (provided) a lot of extra knowledge that really helped us on the track and off the track,” said Lynn.

At the conclusion of the near two-hour derby, the teams shared laughs and presented awards.

The MVP jammer honour went to Jordan (Rebel Belles) and Debbie Clark – DC Comicazi (Kickin' Vixens).

The MVP blocker bragging rights went to Sarah Milligan-Pick – Kate Wreck 'N' Sail (Rebel Belles) and Marla Cameron – Eye Sock Ya (Vixens).

To learn more about the Avon River Rollers, check out their Facebook (@AvonRiverRollers) and Twitter (@avonriverroller) social media pages.

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