The Cincinnati Rollergirls closed out their 2014 season with a win at the Cincinnati Gardens this past Saturday. Will it be one of the last events held there?
|- Players celebrate at the conclusion of the first bout.|
As per usual, the Rollergirls' game featured two bouts. After opening the night with a coed matchup between the CRG's "Black Sheep" squad and the city's men's team, "the Battering Rams," CRG's "Violent Lambs" took on Northern Kentucky's "Black-n-Bluegrass Rollergirls."
|- CRG's Tru D. Vicious stretching before the bout.|
|- A lead jammer in the first bout.|
|- Black-N-Bluegrass' Petal to the Metal as a lead jammer in the second bout.|
2014 marked the third year for the annual "Crosstown Knockdown" where the cross river rivals square off on the flat track. CRG's Violent Lambs would eventually emerge victorious 197-177 in a bout that remained close right up until the end. It seemed to be an excellent way to close the season.
In the 21st century, roller derby has made a huge revival. What started as a serious sport in depression era America became a form of sports entertainment - devolving into staged theatrics akin to professional wrestling. Since the turn of the century however, roller derby as a true sporting competition has been on the rise all across the world, particularly amongst women. Today, the Women's Flat Track Derby Association is the sport's highest ranking body.
|- #77 Anne Bones as a lead jammer during the first bout.|
The Cincinnati Rollergirls were founded in 2005 and by 2007 started calling the historic Cincinnati Gardens home where they've become regular tenants and fan favorites. Standing since 1949, the Gardens has seen many iterations of roller derby come and go, including the recent "Roller Derby Revival."
|- CRG mascot thanking fans.|
The Gardens feels like the perfect venue for derby. It's historic, has steep seats, echoey hallways, cheap beer and an intimacy that modern arenas lack. The building is a Cincinnati classic and the Rollergirls help carry on the tradition of being part of a live crowd in the Gardens.
However, the future of the Gardens is up for debate. As reported by the Cincinnati Business Courier back in March, the building's owners were exploring a possible sale. A follow up article from WCPO last week stated that no firm plans were set. What the future holds for the Gardens seems to be unknown at this point, but in the case of the Rollergirls - the team plans to be back in full force next season, carrying on the roller derby revival that is quickly becoming an excellent Cincinnati tradition.
EDIT: As of February 2016, the Cincinnati Gardens is still alive and well as an arena.
|- CRG's Annie Tomical.|
|- #31 Obie Haive and the CRG bench during the crosstown knockdown.|
|- A member of the Black-N-Bluegrass Rollergirls takes a moment to hug a trackside fan who made the "road trip."|
|- Television booth.|
Special thanks to Lauren aka "Miss Print" for letting come shoot at trackside .
For more information on roller derby in the area, check out:
Cincinnati Battering Rams