|I finally found my new derby name, well it would be if I wasn’t already so attached to being called blitz. The name has 3 major pros:
I present to you : Dread Stark *Squeeeeee*
Now my new identity crisis has been covered I’m not sure what’s left to write about….. Oh that’s right THE GREAT SOUTHERN SLAM OMGSWTFBBQLOLS.
I’ll break this bad boy down day by day.
Day one started at the never before seen by me time of 4:45 in the am. I along with my carpool buddies, Tristan, J-F, Drew, Zom.B.Smasher, Cookie Crackhouse and Devastatin’Dotti drove out of the Melbourne city limits and on the road to Adelaide.
The road trip on the way there can be punctuated by a few key moments that set the fun bar pretty high for the rest of the weekend.
1. Riding the slide in Nhill 4 people at a time.
8 hours in with J-F and Drew napping the the backseat things were looking grim up front. Most of the time was being spent communicating in various fart noises and spotting the USS Enterprise in the clouds.
After getting our 5th or so wind we finally arrived in the sleepy town that is Adelaide.
First things first and after checking in I was driven by J-F and Dotti to to the showground in the Jetta (aka the Fetta Regretta) to test my wheels out and get my arm band for the next 4 days. The floor was good for my atoms. It was a pretty surreal experience being out there on the track for the first time, everything looked just like it did 2 years ago and it made things very real for me, in a good way, I was now ready to play.
The day ended with all of us packed into a hotel room, eating over priced pizza and lounging in our onesies. On a side note : my onesie is a bumble a bee which just happens to be SSRG’s mascot…awkes !!!. Battling to keep our eyes open everyone settled in for an early night.
DAY TWO : ACTION
We started track-side watching both Geelong and Sun State Battle each other for the first game of our pool. We would be playing both these teams today so it was important to see what we were up against.
Sun State are Australia’s second best team so anyone playing these ladies was going to have a tough time. SSRG came out victorious and it was then our turn to start warming up for our game against the Bloody Mary’s.
Warming up in our uniforms was brutal, thanks to sadies *salute*, I was sweating more before the game than during but at least I know i was properly warmed up. It was good to see everyone in their new cute uniforms bounding around in excitement.
The game started out like it did last time, hard and fast. To be honest alot of the game is a blur. Time was ticking away and we only has 2×20 min halves to play in. By half time SSRD were down by around 40 points. The great thing is this time no one was down about it, everyone was switched on and positive.We had a plan for the next half and we just wanted to get in there and execute it.
And execute we did. Changing up the strategy saw us claw back 40 points and gain a lead. Everyone was playing their part and we were playing better as a team than I have ever seen. When the final Jam was over I literally squealed “we did it” and then followed the team chants of fuck yeah ! Amazing moment…
Winning against Geelong was a HUGE moment for me. Last time we played I had Glandular Fever and was feeling pretty depressed after they spanked us so hard. After getting a Sirens tattoo I never really felt like I had earned it until today. Today was my first win as a Siren, and in my opinion the best game I have played so far.
What makes this victory even sweeter was that we did it without some of our old key players (Mad Mel Arena and Flyin Nun’Chucker <3 who are now rightly VRDL A-Team alumni). As a team we adapted to what was happening on the track, refocused and managed to come back with a win in a very close game.
Seriously I was delirious with happiness after. The smile across my face was disturbing to myself and I was embracing anyone that came within a 10 meters radius of me. Belated apologies to those I stink hugged.
Final Score : SSRD 110 to GRDL 96. Yay.
It wasn’t long however before we had to go and prepare for our second game against the Sun State Roller Girls.
At this stage we knew it was going to be a domination but the positive energy from the last game kept everyone in high spirits.
We lined up for the second game, smiles on our faces. Those smiles were then smashed off our faces with almost German like precision…Only temporarily though.
SSRG played quick, they played efficiently and they played smart. We saw alot of plays we have not really focused on in the past but will no doubt be working on in the near future.
By half time we had 4 points on the board. The best thing about this is they way we treated this almost like a win. I think everyone was just super relieved we had points on the board and we weren’t going to have to do a pants off lap after the game.
The second half was much like the first but we managed a few more points. I managed to land some big hits on their jammers taking them out for… like a second or so but it’s better than nothing!
In this half I did however have my favourite derby moment ever:
Last Jam I lined up as the only SSRD blocker against a full suite of SSRG. There was joking from the bench and some laughs. Normally this is pretty much my nightmare scenario but today it just felt fun. The whistle goes, the SSRG jammer steps out and I managed to block her off the track.. all by myself…against 4 SSRG girls….*faint*. I don’t really remember the last part of that jam as I’m pretty sure I was continuously high fiving myself in my head for the next 30 mins.
Final Score : SSRG 193 to SSRD 13. Ouch.
Loosing to SSRG was *almost* as much fun as winning against arch rivals Geelong. I know everyone learned a massive amount from this game and the SSRG’s were very gracious afterwards and even gave us pointers which were much appreciated.
As hard as it is sometimes, swallowing your pride and going into a game where you know bad things are going to happen can be one of the best experiences ever. It’s extremely humbling but you just learn so much and you still get to play the best sport ever in the process.
If your interested both games should be up on DNN soon.
OH THE PAIN. It became apparent after I literally rolled out of bed that it was just as well that the Sirens had not qualified for day 2 as I have never experienced DOMS of this magnitude. I could barely walk and my cold had come back to grace me with barry white-esc pipes… if only for about half an hour.
We went back down to the showgrounds for another day, We watched VRDL start to own people for a little while before taking interest in the challenge bouts, specifically the ones featuring Quadzilla and Razorbec.
Tears of pride welled up as I saw my wifey actively blocking Quadzilla and even better, got lead jammer on him. WIN.
Days filled with derby go faster than I remembered. before we knew it 8 hours had past again and it was time to go back to the hotel.
We headed back after around 7 for some hard earned dumplings and a spa at the hotel. I slept the shit out of sunday night just as I did the previous night.
PAIN. WORSE. ARGH.
Back at the showgrounds it was the day of the big final between SSRG and VRDL just like 2 years ago. I had a stint on the merch table before the game and was lucky enough to get squatted by Dayna Might. I don’t know how that girl does it but it was one wild ride.
Time for the VRDL/SSRG final and my allegiance was torn. I love VRDL but I was also freshly smitten with SSRG.. I decided to just sit back and watch some fine derby in action. I think the most exciting thing was seeing my old fellow goon nun’chucker out there for the first time. It was incredible to see the changes in her already incredible style since she left SSRD.
In my opinion the skill gap between these 2 teams and the rest of Australia is still quite large. So it’s pretty exciting to see them play each other when they get a chance.
VRDL came away with the win, not quite the 1 point thriller that it was 2 years ago but it just shows you that as good as VRDL are they can still improve, I’m looking to see how they will be playing the game in another 2 years.
As soon as the final finished it was pack up and waddle to the car time to get back to Melbourne as soon as possible. I had to work Tuesday much to everyone else’s annoyance.
The drive home seemed to go pretty quick, everyone shared the driving and i was back on my own bed by 3:30 the next day.
I have not yet experienced the post TGSS blues and I don’t think I’m going to. I am just thrilled I got to be a part of it. I had an absolutely amazing time with some of my favorite people in the world and I wouldn’t change any of it !
I’ll be back home in 4 weeks from the land of the rising sun. I’m already looking forward to getting back into to training and put some of the TGSS experience into practice. The whole weekend really has re-inspired my love of the game.
But for now…I’m Outy!
P.S A big thank you to all of the SSRD NSO’S, Refs, Volunteers and Supporters, TGSS was a better place for having you with us <3.
P.P.S A massive congrats the the SSRD Banshee’s on their debut bout and win last night against NSR/LCRD.
P.P.P.S 2 years on.. I still want Swish Caraboom’s babies.