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Are You Ready for KCRW’s 2019-20 Season?

The beginning of every new sports season brings with it a great deal of promise and excitement. That goes double for the Kansas City Roller Warriors, who have blazed a trail of flat track roller derby glory in Kansas City that reaches all the way back to 2005.

Friends and fans alike are understandably excited when a new season begins, but I have news for all the derby fans in Kansas City: the 2019-20 season could be unlike anything you’ve seen before.

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Between the exciting new recruits, the returning veterans from last season, and the superstars of yesteryear re-joining the league — some of them after years of retirement from the sport — we could be in for the most insane season in KCRW history, if we’re not careful.

Last Saturday night, KCRW kicked off the brand new season, one they decided to begin in November, which has only happened one other time in league history. The crowd in attendance was given a mere taste of the season to come, and those who missed out will have their chance to make up for that mistake when the Roller Warriors take the track again on December 14.

For now, let’s take a look at what awaits us in the coming months.


Returning Stars

Way back when I was just a wee fan cheering my little flat track heart out from the crash zone at Municipal Auditorium, one of the most exciting pieces of news I could have gotten was that a favorite retired skater was back in the fray.

Returning fans were treated to that very news Saturday night as a whole handful of superstars, several of whom haven’t competed on the track for quite some time, carved out yet another place for themselves in league history and made their season debut for a new generation of roller derby fanatics in the crowd.

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Superstars returning to the flat track for the 2019-20 season include:

  • Annie Maul: Certainly one of the most prominent players in the long and storied history of the league, Ms. Maul was sponsored by Riedell Skates back in the day and was the pride of the Victory Vixens for years on end. Last weekend, she kicked off the 2019-20 season as a Black Eye Susan.
  • Bruz Her: Long known as a defensive wall unto herself for the dreaded Dreadnought Dorothys in their late-2000s heyday, she took her talents to the Knockouts and Victory Vixens in later seasons before taking a well-earned retirement in 2016. She’s back with the Vixens this season, and we couldn’t be more excited.
  • Eclipse: Accurately billed for years as a “defensive powerhouse” for the powerful Dreadnought Dorothys and the All-Star travel team, this legendary blocker retired after the 2011 season and subsequently coached off and on for house teams in the years since. Such is our regard for the mighty Eclipse that we’ve believed since her retirement that her number, 0, should have been retired along with her. She re-joins KCRW for 2019-20 as a Knockout.
  • Jess Decker: One of the brightest faces on the track in recent memory, Jess Decker was a longtime Knockout before gracefully exiting the track to pursue other endeavors. She returns to KCRW after only a couple of years off, this time drafted to the Black Eye Susans.
  • Lucha Lethal: The former Dreadnought Dorothys mainstay quietly retired from the league around 2013, then played a couple of seasons for then-Dead Girl Derby. She returns to the Dorothys for the 2019-20 season.
  • Shirley Gonnahitya: This beloved former Victory Vixen took some time off from the league, but not from our hearts. Die-hard Shirley fans got their wish Saturday night as Ms. Gonnahitya was re-introduced to the flat track, this time wearing Knockouts teal.
  • Tuff Noogies: The longtime Black Eye Susan finally hung up her skates in 2015 after a distinguished career as a Roller Warrior, and we frankly never thought we’d see her on the track again. We couldn’t be happier to have been wrong. Noogies was drafted to the Dreadnought Dorothys for this season, and we’re thrilled to see her out there.

Promising Rookies

And by “rookies,” we of course mean “first-time Roller Warriors,” since you’ll quickly realize most of these new phenoms have clearly been on skates for quite some time.

For our money, the most exciting newcomer to the league this season would have to be Alley Cat, who among other things, scored herself a 20-point jam Saturday night and netted the team MVP distinction even as her Dorothys fell to the Knockouts by more than 60 points. As of press time, we know very little about this incredible new recruit, who again will almost certainly turn out to be “new” in name only, given the level of experience her tenacity and skill seemed to betray last weekend.

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“Might bust some walls later, idk.”

The Dorothys also gave an honorable mention to newcomer Diva Destruction, who shows some amazing promise in her own right, and about whom you’ll certainly hear more as the season goes on.


Another rookie Roller Warrior we’re extremely excited about is Hellvetica, a “legacy” skater whose mother, Murphy’s Law, was a perennial Plan B powerhouse who retired with distinction after the 2012 season.

But don’t kid yourself, this isn’t your mother’s roller derby; young jammer Hellvetica seems anxious to make a name for herself in this league, and if her performance Saturday night is any indication, she clearly has everything she needs to do just that.

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Not that the Knockouts lack anything a championship-caliber team would need to make another Rink of Fire run, but Hellvetica will certainly add another dimension of jamming firepower to an already fearsome squad, so you can expect great things from her and the Glitter Mafia in 2019-20.

Of course, these aren’t the only new additions to the Kansas City Roller Warriors this season — see also No Class Lass, V-2 Bomber, and Quik Trip, just to name a few.

All things considered, we don’t think it’s a stretch to say these Roller Warriors have some amazing, amazing things in store for the new season, and we hope you’ll join us trackside for each and every bout as the competition heats up.

Who’s your favorite newcomer? What old school veteran are you most excited about returning to the track? Leave a comment below or sound off on our Facebook page and let us know what you think!

Keep an eye on KC Derby Digest for updates and information on the new season. The Kansas City Roller Warriors‘ next bout is on December 14!

The Shotgun Sheilas are back-to-back champions

Last Saturday night, Fountain City Roller Derby fans were treated to a league first when the undefeated Shotgun Sheilas became the first team in FCRD history to take home back-to-back championships, holding off the resurgent Deadly Sirens just long enough to score a 61-56 victory.

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Earlier this week, we caught up with Coach Wyatt to get her thoughts on the 2019 season and what it’s meant to her and the team:

“I have coached the Sheilas since the 2011/12 season. Every year this team amazes me with their hard work and desire to continue to build on the season before. I appreciate the work and effort that every Sheila skater and coaching staff member put in. We have an amazing group of humans that I am happy to call my friends and family.”

Congratulations to Coach Wyatt and the entire Shotgun Sheilas squad on a history-making championship run, and many thanks to all of Fountain City Roller Derby for a phenomenal 2019 season. We can’t wait to join you trackside in 2020!

The 2019 Rink of Fire Preview

One of our favorite annual events is right on top of us, derby fans, and we hope you’ll join us this Saturday night for the 2019 Rink of Fire at Memorial Hall!

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Click for the Facebook event page.


Current Standings

Knockouts: 6-0
Victory Vixens: 2-4
Black Eye Susans: 2-4
Dreadnought Dorothys: 2-4


Yes, the Knockouts have notched an undefeated season at the expense of the other three house teams, who all languish at 2-4 on the season.

At this point, the common question becomes: how do we know who plays the Knockouts for the Rink of Fire championship?

We’ve actually discussed this kind of thing before, so we’ll spare you the finer points, but it boils down to this:

When multiple teams boast identical win-loss records on the season, the tie is broken by the point differential, which is simply the difference between a team’s total points scored and their total points allowed.

The team with the highest point differential wins every single time, and this year, the Victory Vixens came out of nowhere at the tail end of the season to pull a Cinderella and go to the big dance.

We say “Cinderella” because if you’ll recall, the Vixens didn’t win a single game all year until Game 5 on May 4. They started the season 0-4, then won the two remaining games in May and June, racking up enough points in the process to beat out the Dorothys and Susans for a championship run.

Given the standings this year, we’re predicting a Knockouts win by a considerable margin. Having said that, we’ve been equally confident in our Rink of Fire predictions in the past under very similar circumstances and wound up dead wrong.

Remember in 2017 when the 6-0 Dreadnought Dorothys faced the 3-3 Black Eye Susans for the trophy? No one expected the Black & Yellow to take the win, but they did — by 82 points.

If the Victory Vixens pull off an upset this weekend, it will be even bigger than that. Never in the history of the Kansas City Roller Warriors has a 2-4 team bested a 6-0 team for the Warder Cup, but this Saturday night, the Red, White, and Blue will attempt to do just that.


This year’s Rink of Fire celebration will actually feature three bouts and begin at 4:00 as the Kansas City Junior Warriors take the track in their first bout of the 2019 season.

Next, at 6:00, the Dreadnought Dorothys and the Black Eye Susans face off in this year’s grudge match. The Ketchup vs. Mustard bouts are always some of the most competitive and entertaining of the entire season, and we’re looking forward to seeing who comes out on top this year.

Then, immediately following, the undefeated Knockouts face the resurgent Victory Vixens one last time to see who takes home the coveted Warder Cup and bragging rights until next year. Regardless of who comes out on top, it’s going to be an amazing event you won’t want to miss.

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Doors open at Memorial Hall at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday. Be sure and get there early to support the Juniors, who kick off the weekend’s festivities.

As always, adult tickets are $15 at the door — probably the best value in town for what you’re getting this weekend. Kids ages 6-12 are $10 each, and kiddos 5 and under are admitted free.

L.A.’s Cuisine will be on hand serving up some of the best BBQ in a town famous for BBQ, and the afterparty will be at the 403 Club immediately after the championship bout.

We can’t wait to see you at Memorial Hall this Saturday night for the 2019 Rink of Fire Championship!

The Usual Suspects are Fountain City All-Gender Champions

It’s been a while since we updated, but this past weekend at B&D Skate Center in Independence, the Usual Suspects captured the All-Gender Division championship trophy by taking down the incredible Untouchables by a final score of 55-34.

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We’ll have the photos published as soon as possible, and stay tuned for Fountain City Roller Derby‘s Women’s Division, which kicks off its 10th season on June 29.

The Deadly Sirens Are Championship-Bound

It was an incredible, harrowing weekend of roller derby at B&D Skate Center in Independence, between Fountain City’s Women’s Division Game 3 Saturday night and the Sunday morning debut of the Zombie League, who kicked off their 2018 season against Franklin County Fury with a comeback win in the final period.

Of course, the real story of the weekend has to be the Deadly Sirens, who are headed to the Fountain City championship bout for the first time since 2011. Now, keep in mind, ’11 was the first season for the four house teams, and for a while that year, it looked like the Sirens might go undefeated and untouched. They didn’t lose their first game of the year until very late in the season — after they’d lost their top-scoring jammer — and although there was little doubt they’d win the championship that year, they wound up dropping the big game to the Lovely Lethals and remain, to this day, the only team in Fountain City to have never taken home the trophy.

That could all change this season.

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The Sirens are back!

Given the way the last few years have gone, we naturally assumed the Royal Pains would pull out the win this weekend and we would see another titanic struggle between them and the Sheilas for the house trophy. But as we mentioned back in January, the Sirens opened the 2018 season with such a bang that we wondered if maybe they wouldn’t shake things up for us this year, and ultimately, that’s just what they did.

If you follow us on the Twitter, you saw what a slugfest it was Saturday night between the Sirens and Pains. They were tied 10-10 at the end of the first period and 33-33 at the half. The Pains led 50-45 at the end of the third quarter, but the final minutes of the fourth period were pretty anxious as the two teams traded the lead back and forth until the very last jam of the game. After the referees convened and confirmed what they’d seen in the last jam, they announced the Deadly Sirens had indeed edged out the Royal Pains by a final score of 69-68, giving the fans at B&D exactly what they came to see — top-notch, edge-of-your-seat competition. It couldn’t have ended any better.

The Women’s Division championships won’t take place until September, and we’ve got quite a bit of Fountain City action to enjoy between now and then, so stay tuned to KC Derby Digest, both here and on social media, and we’ll keep you up to date on all the goings-on.

Congratulations to the Deadly Sirens for making the championship game this season! We can’t wait to see how it all shakes out.

Double Header Weekend

May and June have been pretty quiet in the world of Kansas City roller derby, but this weekend, things will begin to heat up again, and what better way to get those wheels whirring than with a double header weekend courtesy of Fountain City Roller Derby!

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Click for the Facebook event page.

This Saturday night at B&D Skate Center in Independence, Fountain City’s Women’s Division will hold their third bout night of the season, and the last women’s division event until the championship game later this Fall.

The Shotgun Sheilas will take on the Lovely Lethals to kick things off, and the Royal Pains will take on the Deadly Sirens in the last bout of the night to determine who will face the Sheilas in this year’s championship bout.

Doors open at 6 p.m. Saturday night, and the games begin at 6:30. For more info, click the graphic above.

And that’s just Saturday night.


Sunday morning, also at B&D Skate Center in Independence, Fountain City’s Zombie League takes the track against the visiting Franklin County Fury!

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Click for the Facebook event page.

That’s right, a Sunday morning bout that’s only $5 for adults and free for everyone age 17 and under!

Doors open at 10 a.m., and the game begins at 10:30.

We hope to see everyone at B&D for this weekend’s derby double header!

The 2018 Rink of Fire Preview

Every year, the two best teams in KCRW battle it out for what’s become known as the Warder Cup. That’s the coveted championship trophy named after Coach Ice, the legendary coach of the Kansas City Roller Warriors All-Stars who passed away two years ago this month.

This Saturday night at Memorial Hall in KCK, the fiery Knockouts and the dreaded Dreadnought Dorothys will clash for the trophy, the title, and an entire year’s worth of bragging rights.


By the Numbers

So let’s take a look at how these teams compare.

Both the KOs and the Dorothys boast impressive 5-1 records on the season. The only games they’ve lost this season have been to each other, and a quick glance at the numbers will actually tell you quite a bit. We’ll include numbers from the Vixens and the BES for comparison’s sake too:

Knockouts: 5-1
Points scored: 1,350
Points allowed: 1,040
Point differential: +310

Dreadnought Dorothys: 5-1
Points scored: 1,342
Points allowed: 901
Point differential: +441

Victory Vixens: 2-4
Points scored: 825*
Points allowed: 1,079*
Point differential: -174

Black Eye Susans: 0-6
Points scored: 820*
Points allowed: 1,317*
Point differential: -497

* indicates these numbers include scores from Game 6 last month in which the BES foreited at halftime. The Vixens led 82-69 at that point, and final calculations are based on that halftime score, in case you’re wondering why their point totals are so much lower.


How They Stack Up

As you can see, the Knockouts hold a slim lead in total points scored on the year, just eight more than the Dorothys.

However, the Dorothys have allowed the fewest points of any team in the league, and it’s not even close: only 901 on the year, compared to their nearest neighbors, the KOs, who have allowed 1,040.

Because of this, the Dorothys also boast the best point differential in the league this season with +441, compared to the KOs’ already impressive +310 on the year.

Head to head, the Dorothys have outscored the Knockouts 408-393 this season, a slim 15-point margin under the WFTDA rule set.

And both teams have experienced a slight decline in points scored during the second half of the season vs. the first half. The KOs averaged 242 points per game in the first half of the season, but only 208 in the second half; the Dorothys averaged 224.66 in the first half, but only 212.66 in the second half. Both teams had their lowest-scoring games of the year last month. Their overall averages per game are nearly identical.

Folks, this is tough.

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Based on these numbers and the way the wind appears to be blowing at this point in time, we’re predicting a Dreadnought Dorothys win by no more than 12 points.

Overall, the numbers are extremely close. Much has been made of the Knockouts‘ undefeated streak, which only came to an end last month, but ultimately, we believe it comes down to what seems to be a dominant defensive effort on the part of the Dorothys, given their unmatched point differential and impressive points-allowed stats.

Either way, fans are guaranteed a slug-fest this Saturday night, and we hope you’ll all join us for the history that will unfold on the track before us.


When & Where

The Rink of Fire championship will take place this Saturday night at Memorial Hall in KCK. Doors open at 5:00, and the games begin promptly at 6:00.

Advance tickets are still available through Brown Paper Tickets for $10 for adults and $5 for kiddos ages 6-12. Prices go up to $15 and $10, respectively, if you get them at the door.

As always, they’ll have a 50/50 drawing to benefit the Rose Brooks Center, and they’ll have $1 beers from 5-6 p.m.

The first bout of the night features the annual grudge match, this time between the 2-4 Victory Vixens and the winless Black Eye Susans. And of course, the second bout of the night will be for all the marbles, so don’t miss it!

Join us at Memorial Hall this Saturday night for what’s sure to be a Rink of Fire blowout!