The Tar Sand Betties got stuck in the muck as they lost to the Penticton Pistoleras 125-110 last Saturday in roller derby action.
The home team bumped their way to victory against Fort McMurray at the Penticton Trade and Convention Centre.
The Betties started strong and gained an early lead over the Pistoleras in the first half. A jammer penalty by the Betties landed RuckusDoll of the Pistoleras a powerjam, giving Penticton their first lead.
The Pistoleras were still up at half-time 62-59.
An action-packed second half had fast jams, hard hits and lots of penalties. The Betties took repeated trips to the sin bin but solid, defensive walls kept Penticton from capitalizing. The Pistoleras played strong defence themselves, keeping the
Betties at bay and the score close. In the final minutes, the Pistoleras pulled ahead with another powerjam and solidified the victory.
“It was amazing,” said Colleen (Oozy Q) Milligan. “It was a really, really good bout. They are a really strong team. We knew we really had to step it up.”
Prior to the bout, the Pistoleras worked on their defence and being strong along the walls to control their opponents’ speed. That gave them more control of the game.
The two teams hope to rematch in Fort McMurray next year. Giving the teams a boost was an enthusiastic crowd of 323.
“(It was) probably one of our best crowds yet,” said Oozy Q. “Everybody seemed to have a really good time. Everybody was cheering really loud. It was noticed and we appreciated it.”
Oozy Q said success this season for them was based on building the league, getting members and getting interest. A lot of it has been a community connection and trying to get the word out.
“Get us more active in the community,” said Oozy Q, who is a biologist during the day. “Helping out charities. Be a positive role model for our community and for women as well. Be an outlet for all women.”
The Pistoleras will play their final game of the season Dec. 1 against NWO in Chilliwack. Oozy Q said in some aspects its disappointing for the season to end, but also not.
“It’s an incredible amount of hard work, physically and mentally,” she said. “A little break at the end of the season won’t hurt things.”
While the playing is almost over, they won’t stop promoting. With 20 girls on the constantly changing roster, the Pistoleras will be looking to improve membership and seek sponsorships.
The South Okanagan Roller Derby Association and the Pistoleras thank all the fans, sponsor’s, volunteers, referees and everyone who has supported them throughout their first season in Penticton.