Categorized | Featured, Roller Derby, Sports

Derby powerhouse schools Hawaii teams


Slideshow photos by Rick Ogata | Special to Hawaii 24/7

(Photo courtesy of Alane Cole)

Special to Hawaii 24/7 by Eric “Buddy Haole” Lammerman

Seattle’s Sockit Wenches took apart two fledgling Hawaii teams in a derby doubleheader billed a “Midsummer Night Scream” Saturday evening in Hilo.

Big Island derby fans enjoyed a rare opportunity to watch an elite team in action, and island derby girls got to test themselves against their heroes.

“We’re really grateful to have a team like this come all the way out here,” Hawaiian Honey Badger Fyrefly Fatale said. “You already know that they’re really good, so you just go out there and have a good time, play your hardest and try to keep up.”

The Sockit Wenches joined the resurgent sport seven years ago, and finished as champions of Seattle’s Rat City Roller Girls league in 2006 and 2010. The league is the subject of the derby documentary “Blood on the Flat Track: Rise of the Rat City Roller Girls.” Their all-star team, which currently features two members of the Sockit Wenches, finished second nationally in 2006 and 2007.

“We’re looking to learn,” Honey Badger coach Irish-I-Was-Bashin’-Ya said. “We wanna see what top-quality derby is, and we’re about to play against it: That’s an awesome opportunity, especially a year-and-a-half in. We’re not so much worried about the score at the end of the game. Maybe they have some strategy that we’ve never seen before, that’s what we’re looking for.”

Sassy Chassis, another coach in Paradise Roller Girls’ league, has close ties to all three teams involved in the double header.

“I skated with them (the Sockit Wenches) for years,” Sassy said. “When I left Seattle, I went to Oahu and I trained their new girls…and their new girls were here tonight! I left there after a year and I came here, and I worked with Paradise … so every group here was a part of my whole derby life.”

The visitors began the evening bouting the Hulagans from Oahu’s Pacific Roller Derby league. The Pacific Roller Derby league formed in 2008, the first Hawaiian league to catch the sport’s new wave. The Hulagans fell behind the Seattle squad early, and by halftime the score was 156-24.

The Sockit Wenches continued to pour it on in the second half of the bout, winding up with a 314-54 victory.

“We had watched them play, we know they’re a really good team, and we knew it was gonna be an awesome learning experience,” said Hulagan captain Soviette Suzette. “It was a fight out there. They had some tight walls, and they’re really good at adjusting their pack to every situation.”

In the evening’s second bout, the Sockit Wenches faced the Hawaiian Honey Badgers of Big Island’s Paradise Roller Girls. Showing few signs of wear from the first bout, the Sockit Wenches led the Honey Badgers 118-30 at the half.

They coasted to a 227-68 win, allowing several girls to play unfamiliar positions and try different strategies.

Sockit Wench coach Drew Blood, voted Best Jammer for the Sockit Wenches in 2006, offered an interesting perspective about her team’s lopsided wins: “We’ve been on both sides of that situation. Texas was a team that we really looked up to when we started, and they would come and visit us and kill us. We were like, ‘What are we doing?’ and they would give us feedback, and we would have some of them come up to Seattle and do workshops with us. A couple years later, we actually played them and beat them at a regional tournament.”

Oahu’s Hulagans will return to Hilo on Nov. 26 to play the hometown Honey Badgers.

(Photo courtesy of Alane Cole)

(Photo courtesy of Daniel Nathaniel)

2 Responses to “Derby powerhouse schools Hawaii teams”

  1. Andrew Bugreyev says:

    The Oahu Score which you posted was incorrect. it was 278-55.

  2. Anna says:

    Actually, the score in the article was correct. The Sockit Wenches scored 314 points in the Oahu game.

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