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Firebirds roll to victory at roller derby

The Fairplex in Pomona gets rowdy as the Los Angeles Firebirds take on the Brooklyn Red Devils.

Building Eight in the Pomona Fairplex was transformed into a roller derby track to house the face-off between the L.A. Firebirds and the Brooklyn Red Devils, during a 4 lap, anything goes match last Saturday. The coach for the Brooklyn Red Devils swings a folding chair at the L.A. Firebirds coach Ray Robles being held by skating captain Tony Trujillo. / photo by Rafael Anguiano

Building Eight in the Pomona Fairplex was transformed into a roller derby track to house the face-off between the L.A. Firebirds and the Brooklyn Red Devils, during a 4 lap, anything goes match last Saturday. The coach for the Brooklyn Red Devils swings a folding chair at the L.A. Firebirds coach Ray Robles being held by skating captain Tony Trujillo. / photo by Rafael Anguiano

Rachel Smith
Staff Writer

It was pandemonium Saturday night as American Roller Skating Derby invaded the Fairplex in Pomona.

The Los Angeles Firebirds skated to a nail-biting victory over the Demonic Brooklyn Red Devils, 81-80.

“It was the wildest game of any sport I’ve ever seen,” said Angel Dunagan a roller derby newcomer.

She was shocked by the violent nature of the game.

“I’ve never seen so many women smacking and pulling each other’s hair,” Dunagan said.
The claws were out and the ladies from each team were not afraid to use them.

In front of a packed house, the Red Devils’ rookie of the year, Janet Rovang sent Firebird jammer, Megan Martinez flying over the safety rail on to the hard concrete.

The crowd cheered as Martinez dragged herself from the floor, back to the track and continued to battle.

The guys of each team were just as violent as the ladies. Dave “Wild Man” Marez, manager of the Red Devils, gave a beating to any Firebird that got in his way.

“I love to fight,” Marez said.

At the end of the first half the score was Firebirds 38 and the Red Devils 39.

These titans of the track left their spectators yearning for more action.

“I just don’t understand how they are scoring points,” said Linda Reich, another roller derby newcomer, but she was impressed by the physical ability of each player.

Firebirds Manager and Skater, Dave Martinez said the jammers score all the points.

The jammer is the player from each team with the helmet on and they have 60 seconds to score points by lapping all the players on the track.

The crowd screamed as the teams entered the arena for the second half.

A special round of skating was held between the Red Devils’ manager, Tony “El Tigre” Trujillo and coach, Marez; and the Firebirds manager, Martinez and coach, Ray Robles.

It was an “everything goes” match.

As the teams hit the track and the fury was unleashed, “El Tigre” drop kicked Firebird coach Robles.

As he hit the ground, “El Tigre” pounced on him. The crowd cheered with delight as the men pounded on each other.

No points were scored by either team during the “everything goes” match because the skaters focused on the beatings.

The ladies took to the track for one last match of punishment.

Red Devil player, “Sweet” Stephanie Garcia, was a gladiator on the track as she terrorized the lady Firebirds.

During a fight between Patsy Delgado of the Firebirds and “Sweet” Steph­anie, Miss Georgia Hase, the Red Devil general manager decided to join the fight.

The kicking, shoving and hair pulling stirred the crowd into a wild frenzy.

As the ladies began to skate away, out of nowhere Honey Sanchez, Firebirds General Managers charged “Sweet” Stephanie and Miss Georgia.

Honey was determined to annihilate them both for the vicious attacks on the lady Firebirds.

After the melee was broken up, Sanchez and Miss Georgia were kicked off of the track. Miss Georgia took the news hard and attacked everybody she could, even crowd members. Sanchez left as the crowd chanted, “Out!”

“I was tired of ‘Sweet’ Stephanie kicking everybody and I did what I could; I wiped the track with her,” Sanchez said.

The men hit the track after the ladies of mayhem were removed. The male jammers skated hard for every point. The lead went back in forth during the final minutes. At the end of the final buzzer, Firebirds stood on top of the heap. The victorious Firebirds cheered and celebrated with their fans.

The crowd booed the Red Devils off the track, as they embraced the winning hometown team.

Rachel Smith can be reached at rachel.smith@laverne.edu.

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