The Rose City Rollers began their 10th season at Memorial Coliseum last Saturday. This year’s season will be a bit longer than previous years with each of Rose City’s four home teams playing each other twice over throughout the year. The first of the two bouts was something of a blowout, and the second one was... well, I wrote "lead change" in my notes quite a bit.

Full coverage after the jump.

Jala Pain Yo, the Break Neck Betties jammer, prepares to launch by GNRs Ivana Thrasher and Untamed Shrew. More of Sharkeys photos over here.
  • Sharkey (AKA Masonite Burn)
  • Jala Pain Yo, the Break Neck Betties' jammer, prepares to launch by GNR's Ivana Thrasher and Untamed Shrew. More of Sharkey's photos over here.

The first of the two bouts pitted the Heartless Heathers against the High Rollers, the returning champions (full disclosure: my girlfriend skates for the High Rollers). The Heathers took an early lead from the first jam and soon extended it. The High Rollers, for their part, were not able to counter. The girls in green didn’t break into the double digits until 11 minutes in. By then, the Heathers lead was a solid but not unbeatable 41-10. However, penalties were ultimately with the Heartless Heathers, and toward the end of the first half the fast-moving undead vikings took advantage of a series of brutally effective power jams. The Blast Unicorn, Screaming Beaver, and Irie Bell all left the Rollers in the dust, and at the end of the first half the Heartless Heathers led by an intimidating 141-39.

The second half featured even more punishment for the Rollers, despite some effective jamming from Napoleon Blownapart. The Heathers consistently took advantage of penalties, and the High Rollers simply did not have the kind of offense necessary to keep up. For most of the bout, the Rollers had only about one third of all the points on the board, and at the end of it all, the Heathers were victorious. It was a decisive defeat for the Rollers, who have a very new roster this year. Despite still wearing green uniforms, they are a very different team than last year’s champs. FINAL: Heartless Heathers 297, High Rollers 101.

The evening’s second bout was a stark contrast to the initial blowout. The Guns N Rollers took on the Break Neck Betties in what proved to be an exciting and volatile bout. The start of the first half favored the Betties, and after a few solid jams by Supa Sixpack and Jala Pain Yo it looked like the crowd at the Coliseum was going to see another pummeling. However, GNR superstar Scald Eagle narrowed the score to a manageable 28-36, and the entire back end of the first half was a back-and-forth of lead changes between two very evenly matched teams. The Betties, though, managed to dramatically widen their lead at the end of the half, and GNR trailed the red rockabillies by 75-125 going into the break.

Early on in the second half the bout still looked like a tug-of-war, especially during an amazing power jam from Untamed Shrew that put GNR up 138-131 over the Betties. However, the last part of the bout featured several small, methodical jams on the part of the Break Neck Betties, and soon the ladies in red were able to slowly and surely extend their lead. At the end of it all, the Betties triumphed over GNR. FINAL: Break Neck Betties 205, Guns N Rollers 164.

The next bout is on February 7 at Oaks Park, with the Guns N Rollers taking on the Heartless Heathers. Then on February 8, the Break Neck Betties battle the High Rollers.