Do you like watching up-and-coming derby leagues? The Susquehanna Valley Derby Vixens hope you do. This Saturday, July 9, they are putting on their third intra-league bout of the season. This very fresh team of young skaters have used the intra-league bouts to not only increase their area’s interest in the sport of roller derby, but also to train their nerves and their skills putting on bouts.
Over the last year, SVDV has been going through the growing pains young leagues usually endure. Of the leagues’ three founding members, Tricia Steele, Kim Hughes, and Candy Kitchen (no that’s not her derby name), none of them continue in their full leadership roles with the league. They have instead fallen into positions as strictly skaters, if they skate at all.
One of the biggest obstacles is the fact that they do not have a coach. They train from YouTube videos, the experience of skaters who have visited outside leagues, as well as from outside leagues. Experience and criticism from the Wilkes-Barre Roller Radicals, Harrisburg Area Roller Derby, and the Steel City Derby Demons have been key in the progression of the team. Skaters also rotate duties of running practices; skater Paranorma takes point in creating a program for the more experienced skaters to run practices.
Alice Appaul, blocker and jammer for SVDV, is one of the more experienced girls on the team and has accepted some of the leadership responsibility on the team since she came back from a six month period with H.A.R.D. She had the opportunity to not only play the Dutchland Blitz as a Fallout Femme, but also to play for bench coach Grooper Cleavage, and with players from H.A.R.D., DC Roller Girls, and Charm City when the Northside Stranglers played a mock bout against the Black Rose Rollers. She seems to be most excited about the growth of SVDV while she was gone, as well as the spike of expansion since she’s gotten back. She’s extremely positive about the direction of the league.
The team has done fundraisers and charity events in the last few months, and even got to debut on a national stage when they played H.A.R.D.’s Fallout Femmes at East Coast Extravaganza in a challenge bout. Though they lost that game, they are amped up for redemption. July 17 they will travel to H.A.R.D. to play the “second half” of the game as the first game in a double header that night. SVDV’s two teams, the Gulliotinas and the Pretty Little Skull Crushers, are looking forward to playing an expanded season against a variety of teams in the future.
Before that though, spectators can check out a full hour of SVDV at their home rink!Check out “aBOUT Face!”: an intra-league bout by SVDV where ARMY takes on NAVY. Tickets are only $8 at the door, ½ price for veterans and free for children 12 and under. First whistle blows at the YMCA Pickelner Arena on Elmira Street in Williamsport at 6pm. Doors open at 5:30pm.
Check out more about the Susquehanna Valley Derby Vixens: