Heartland South West Bout Day 1 – Severn and Dorset Set The Pace!

Updated: March 17, 2014
In this, the first of the Heartland Series South West Division, Severn Roller Torrent opened their campaign to retain the Championship by beating Wiltshire Roller Derby 333-17, while hosts Surrey Roller Girls lost out to Dorset Roller Girls 236-119.
Text by Roisi Provan. Photography by Tim Churchill.

Severn have a prestigious history within the Heartland Series, being the unbeaten champions in 2013. Nerves were obviously running high for Wiltshire, and despite some valiant efforts by Magic Round-Her-Bout, one of Wiltshire’s key jammers from 2013, Severn Roller Torrent’s Scarlett Shadow pulled off a number of natural grand slams to give Severn a strong early lead. Wiltshire then got into penalty trouble, leading to a number of Power Jams for Severn. This, along with some great recycling from Severn skater Beatrix GotHer, meant Severn ended the first half with a 154-5 lead.

Despite a strong first jam of the second half, Wiltshire were unable to gain a foothold in the bout. A small team of 11 skaters for Wiltshire, paired with Severn’s impressive Helen Fury and Thunderkat really racking up points, meant that Wiltshire were never threaten Severn’s lead. Another couple of big power jams finished off Wiltshire’s chances, and although Wiltshire’s Lethal Sizzle picked up a few points the bout still finished on an convincing Severn win 333 – 17. It was a great start to their campaign to retain their crown this year.

From two teams who had a history, to two unknown quantities. Dorset Roller Girls and Surrey Roller Girls had never met on track before, and neither team have many public games on the books, Dorset’s Chu Chu Rocket picked up lead in the first jam to grab an early 15-0 lead. Unfortunately for Surrey, their jammer Just Jess got into penalty trouble, allowing Dorset to get several power jams in a row. Surrey’s blocker Hipwreck managed to land some strong hits on the Dorset jammers, but sturdy walls from Dorset meant that the half finished with a 155-32 lead for Dorset.

Surrey were a different team in the second half, with stronger walls and faster jamming allowing them to begin to close in on Dorset’s lead. Both teams continued to rack up penalties, and this lead to two foul-outs, the first for Dorset’s Flash Gaudion, followed by Surrey’s Just Jess. Surrey fought to get over 100 points, but it looked like it was all over until a last minute time out was called, giving them one final jam, where Surrey’s Buffy Smothers took full advantage of a powerjam to end on a high for Surrey. However, Dorset looked strong and organised and could be a real threat in this division. Dorset finished the game with a 236-119 victory.

Severn proved why they were last year’s champions, but the three tournament newcomers showed that there is a great deal of potential in this Division. Severn host the next South West bout, on Sunday 30th March at Leisure@ Cheltenham. The two winners, Severn and Dorset, will face off, and Basingstoke Bullets and Plymouth City Roller Girls will play their first games of the tournament.