The Sunshine Coast’s roller girls learned the hard way that the Black Diamond Betties are tough to beat on their home track.
Last Sunday, April 20, the final night of the World Ski and Snowboard Festival (WSSF), the hometown Betties disposed of the visiting Red Tide Warning, dominating the second half at the Whistler Conference Centre on their way to a 205-141 victory in the bout billed as “Super Brawl Sunday.”
The Sunshine Coast squad led by as much as 45 points in the first half, but the Betties authored a big comeback to send their hundreds of fans in attendance home happy.
“It was a very good game. It was a nice, tight fight, that’s for sure,” said the Red Tide Warning’s Crystal “Ivonna Masterskate” Dejong, who was named the team’s MVP in a losing effort. “We’re usually a second-half team… but there was a total change-around this time.”
The Red Tide took advantage of a number of Betties’ penalties to start running up the score early on, but the home side started to grab the momentum in the dying moments of the first half.
Betties captain Lori “Princess Slayah” O’Hare put up 19 points on a power jam for the last play before halftime, cutting the Red Tide’s lead to 85-61 at the break.
The Whistler crew then grabbed the lead for good on a 35-point jam to open the second half, which kicked off a 57-4 run that left the Betties comfortably in front the rest of the way.
“I think we were fairly evenly matched,” said O’Hare, who was selected as the Betties’ MVP of the bout. “We just had the momentum after halftime and took it from there.”
Sunday marked the second time the sport has been part of the WSSF, and the bout was the most impressive flat-track roller-derby production the resort has seen yet. With a raucous, sold-out crowd lining the track and Jumbotron-like screens following the action above it, the atmosphere at the conference centre was electric and exciting for both teams.
“It was a lot of fun and a great venue,” said Sunshine Coast bench coach Jeanette “Napalm Nette” Stenzel.
The Red Tide Warning will visit Squamish’s Sea to Sky Sirens for their next bout on May 24, and play their first home bout of the season on July 19 against Nanaimo’s Harbour City Rollers.
© Coast Reporter