St. Louis-based Arch Rival Roller Derby will field a pair of travel teams at a Boston-based invitational this weekend and both are looking for respective sweeps.
The Arch Rival All-Stars and the ARCH Nemesis compete at “Lobstah Roll,” held Saturday and Sunday at Shiners Auditorium in Wilmington, Massachusetts.
At the multi-league scramble, the Arch Rival All-Stars battles the primary team of the event’s host, Boston Roller Derby, as well as Montreal Roller Derby’s “New Skids on the Block” and Ann Arbor Roller Derby’s “Brawlstars.”
Meanwhile ARCH Nemesis – the local league’s traveling “B-team” – squares off against Montreal’s “Les Sexpos” and the “Boston B.”
Both flat-track franchises look to feast on the competition during their respective quad-skate sprints.
“It feels great to be returning to multi-game weekends, a sort of faux tournament season considering the time of year,” said Arch Rival All-Stars co-captain Vicious Van GoGo.
“This is a big moment for the Nems!” added ARCH Nemesis co-captain Ultraviolet. “We’ve traveled for games and tournaments in the past, but this will be our first time traveling for sanctioned play.”
For the Arch Rival All-Stars (3-1), who has appeared at the last five international championship tournaments held by the Women’s Flat Track Derby Association (WFTDA), they look to extend their current three-game winning streak in sanctioned play.
There’s plenty of optimism heading into their trio of counter-clockwise clashes this weekend. As a primer, they thumped the Windy City All-Stars, 283-55, in mid-August at their home track at Queeny Park’s Midwest Sport Hockey.
“That game felt very action packed,” reflected Van GoGo of last month’s duke. “Windy always brings strong, physical play that challenges our offense and jammers. Since it is often so far (and) in between from game to game, each game is an opportunity to shore up what we’re working on and continue to build pack chemistry.”
Rostered this weekend for the All-Stars include co-captains Van GoGo and Shear-Ra Powers alongside jammers Annie Swanson, Jedi Knight-N-Gale, Hart, Skeevie Nicks and Pork T’Choup Slamwich and blockers Bolt Action, Cloak N’ Drag-Her, WyldeSyde, SheKill O’Neal, Pegasass, Birdsong, Splatter, dadbod, Cruella Belle-Ville, LuxFurious, K. Woodward, and Eirinn Go Brawl.
Their solo Day One opponent – Boston – notched a 210-37 season opening victory over Penn Jersey in mid-August.
Despite both teams’ separate 18-year tenures in the flat-track sport, Saturday’s match-up marks the inaugural showdown between Arch Rival and the host.
The same can be written for the ARCH A’s first-time meeting against Ann Arbor Sunday morning. The Brawlstars (5-3) fell to Detroit last month, 157-80.
“Ann Arbor and Boston are a mystery at this point,” assessed Van GoGo of the adversaries. “We are ready to play our game and have an opportunity to share the track with these two teams.”
Lobstah Roll’s Sunday finale finds ARCH in a rematch with Montreal, who are currently 3-2 in sanctioned play. St. Louis topped the New Skids, 273-72, at June’s “Sibling Rivalry” invitational held at Queeny Park.
“We really enjoy playing Montreal,” said Van GoGo. “They bring a smart, physical game and are incredible opponents. Both of our teams bring a lot of positive energy and I think it translates to a fun game to watch. We look forward to playing them again.”
For the Nemesis, this travel season continues their first-ever foray into WFTDA-sanctioned play. Both games for the B-teamers take place Saturday and the missive is keep their current 3-0 record spotless. A 227-203 triumph over Windy City Second Wind last month extended their win streak.
“Windy certainly didn’t make it easy,” reflected Ultraviolet. “Overall, the Nems had a great game, but there’s always room to improve. Going into the weekend, we’re hoping to keep our penalty count down and play as cohesively as possible.”
Jammers rostered for the games alongside the co-captain include Skeevie Nicks, Spider Monkey, TriAngel, Tempo Tantrum and Hart while co-captain Joan of Spark, POW!, WyldeSyde, SheKill O’ Neal, Girl Fawkes, Birdsong, DeeBomb, Soup Beans and Regrets provide the blocking.
Their Saturday morning game against Montreal’s Les Sexpos (0-2) kicks off the two-day Lobstah Roll dish. The Nemesis then faces Boston B (0-1) as the afternoon winds down.
“We’re expecting two hard-fought games,” projected Ultraviolet. “We’ve played Les Sexpos in the past, but it’s been a few years. I think we’ve come out of the pandemic with a strong team, so I’m really looking forward to that matchup.”
The overall goal for each ARCH team this weekend is to stay on course and build towards 2024. For the All-Stars, currently ranked first in the WFTDA North American East division, and second overall globally, the prize that is eyed next year is the Hydra Trophy, which is presented to the team that claims the international championship title.
“Every team wants to be number one in their region and ultimately hold the Hydra,” said Van GoGo. “We are no different. Having successes at Lobstah Roll is an important step to reaching that goal. Wins are the obvious marker for that, but so is performing as a team and encouraging each other to be. We’re eager to continue bringing our best.”
For the Nemesis, they aim to continue their winning ways and gain upward trajectory within the North American East.
“This weekend is going to be the culmination of everything we’ve been working towards this season,” Ultraviolet said. “It would feel amazing to keep up that winning streak – and it would truly position Arch Rival’s B team as a force to be reckoned within the WFTDA.”
And success at Lobstah Roll for the St. Louis rollers means five collective victories between the two travel teams and full bellies for the return flight home.
For more information on ARCH, go to their official website.
ARCH AT LOBSTAH ROLL INVITATIONAL (All times Central).
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 9
9 AM – ARCH Nemesis vs. Montreal Les Sexpos
11 AM – ARCH All-Stars vs. Boston A
4 PM – ARCH Nemesis vs. Boston B
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 10
11 AM – ARCH All-Stars vs. Ann Arbor All-Stars
4 PM – ARCH All-Stars vs. Montreal New Skids of the Block
By trade, he is a six-time, regional Emmy Award-winning news videographer/editor for KTVI/KPLR-TV. By hobby, he is a writer for Arch City Media, dating back to February 2014. Emphasis is on featuring and promoting local women's sports, but will cover anything that is not reported by traditional media outlets. Also a contributor to local concert reviews.