Catch up on league history, learn about team rosters, and get schooled in Roller Derby history in the 2013 New Hampshire Roller Derby Media Guide.
Catch up on league history, learn about team rosters, and get schooled in Roller Derby history in the 2013 New Hampshire Roller Derby Media Guide.
You came from an artistic skating background. Can you talk a little bit about that and how you made the transition to derby skates (and skating?) Artistic skating is as different from derby as can be. For those people out there that don’t know what it is, it’s basically ballroom dancing on skates [well the dance style of it – that’s what I did. There is also freestyle (jumps & spins) and figures (those big circles that are drawn in black on the floors of many skating rinks- you trace those)], and yes that comes with all the glitter and glamour and spray tan thrown in. I started skating at 5 years of age at a rink in Merrimack NH that was only 5 minutes from my parents’ house. I was introduced to the sport by two of my aunts who had artistic skated for years. I started in the tiny tot beginner classes on Saturday mornings with a bunch of other kids. I soon graduated to a different rink in Tyngsboro MA and private lessons. This continued for many more years when I finally ended my Artistic career skating at a rink in Milford MA and at that time I was 18 years old. By this age I had accomplished everything I had hoped I would in Artistic and so it was time for me to move on with my life and try a new path like Cosmetology school.
The Derby skates felt so strange in the beginning. With no ankle support and with out a tall heel I thought I would never be able to skate in them. When I first picked them up I attended a session on a Friday night at Roller Kingdom all by myself and just keep doing simple skating skills to get the feel of them. The biggest obstacle was actually the lower heel, I ended up loosing my balance and falling backwards several times. Then a few months later at a practice I thought it would be fun to bring in my Art skates and give those a try but when I put my feet in them they were the most uncomfortable things I’d worn in a long time. I didn’t even bother to lace them up. I grabbed my derby skates real quick and it felt like I was putting my favorite slippers on because they were so much more comfy, who knew.
The transition from Artistic skating to Derby Skating is anything but easy. I think it would have been a much smoother change if I had been a speed skater because of their posture and position they have to skate in or a roller hockey player that is used to being hit or checked. The only advantage to being an artistic skater is that I was comfortable on my skates, I had to learn to get low, I had to learn how to hit and be hit, I had to learn the game and all the rules. There were moments that I thought I would never be able to play this sport but I’ve put in the work and gotten better and my plan is to keep pushing myself to see what I can achieve.
I love being in the middle with the NSO’s and hearing people comment about your prowess on the track. Wasn’t there something about skating on one foot backwards? Do tell!! HaHa, Ok here’s the story… It was the last bout of the year for SFOD in 2012. We were in Maine playing a closed-door bout against their A team the Port Authorities. We as a team were really looking forward to this rematch because the last time we played them at home they beat us by only 17 Points and if we beat them this time it would possibly help us to move up in our WFTDA ranking for the quarter.
The moment you are talking about happened coming out of turn 2. I was jamming and one of their blockers (their last blocker I had to pass to get out of the pack) was coming from the inside to lay a big hit on me to try and make me go out of bounds. I ended up counter blocking but the momentum I had going took me a bit off balance and all I could do to stay up was spin on one foot and then I ended up skating backwards out of the pack. There are times that I will pull out anything I can from my past just so I don’t end up on the floor. I hate to fall and I’m no help to my team if I’m on the floor!!
You are a hair stylist by day and a derby queen by night…. Do you think dealing with the public on such a personal level has given you insights in dealing with so many women on a league? I don’t know if I’d call it insight but it has definitely helped me with picking my battles and communicating to get to the point of the problems or issues and to be able to come to a middle ground decision. When dealing with people, you have to remember that everyone has feelings, problems, and their own ideas about certain things and in life weather they are big or small, if you strive to treat each and every person you have to work with no matter if you agree on things or disagree, you should still always try to remember to show them kindness and respect because it makes for a happier easy working/life experience. There is something to be said about the “Golden Rule” It’s TRUE!!
Coaching the Meltdowns and being a prominent jammer for SFOD…the league has a lot of respect for you and it seems the feeling is mutual. Someone (Trina!) described you as a “positive force”. I love that! Thoughts? (Wow, what a way to make me blush;) It is true that I love this league very very much and I love the teams I’m involved with, I couldn’t imagine skating for anyone else. As for the “positive force”, all I can really say is that I do try to have a smile on my face when I show up for practice, leave my life problems at the door, try to attend as many league functions as possible despite my wonky work schedule and to always mind my manners at all Bouts weather they are at home or away. Please, don’t get me wrong I do have my moments of darkness and frustration but they are not often and thankfully over quick.
What would you like to accomplish (derby-wise or life wise!) in 2013? What are your goals? Derby-wise goals for 2013 are:
Life-wise I’m pretty content. I have a house to call home and my bills are paid mostly on time. I recently made a career move to a new salon that is exactly the type of salon I have always wanted to work at and I couldn’t ask for more supportive co-workers (They are planning to be at all our home games and are ready to be the loudest people in JFK).
However, I do have one main life goal that seems to never change, it’s something that lots of people struggle with so it’s nice to know I’m not alone. It is to find a way to eat healthier on a more consistent basis. I’m not talking about a diet I can stick to but more of an eating regiment that can work with a busy life style. I really like my fast food, sweets and coffee but if I can find a way to eat less amounts of these and incorporate more fruits and veggies, protein and water into my daily life (and not just for 2 weeks at a time) it will not only benefit me in derby but help me to continue to live a long and happy life with my husband and son.
Do you plan on continuing to coach the home team(s)? If so, what is the biggest skill/issue you would like develop? Why yes I do. I have been asked to come back as one of the trainers for the Seabrook Meltdowns and do plan on returning as their Jam coach. I am planning to and will happily be a part of this team as long as they will have me. The Meltdowns have a special place in my heart because it was the first team I was drafted to when I was a freshie with NHRD.
I am not totally sure of the skills we’ll need to work on quite yet. I’ll know more when we see the final roster and how the new team flows together but I can tell you that it’ll start with some team bonding and trust exercises. I can’t tell you any more or I’d have to kill ya- J/K.
And finally, who is your favorite Charmed One? That would be the oldest sister (in seasons 4-8) PIPER!! She is quite a role model for any woman. She’s strong, witty, powerful and most of all, loves her family and will do anything she can to make sure they are protected and safe. Plus, she can kick a** by freezing and blowing stuff up!! What’s not to love there?J
Scurrie was recently voted one of New England’s MVPs of Derby! Congrats Scurrie! Trina Trioxin was right…you are a POSITIVE FORCE that we are all better for knowing!
You are all over NHRD! A trainer for the Nightmares. Skating for multiple teams (SFOD All-Stars and the Nightmares). You were a Cherry Bomb in 2011. Is it different playing for a Home vs. Travel Team?
How did you get involved in training? What kind of stuff do you do?
You primarily play Blocker. Is that the position you’re most comfortable with?
How did you find Roller Derby? Besides getting to skate fast and push people around, what attracted you about the sport? Do you come from a sports background?
You work in the veterinary field. That takes a lot of patience, love, and nurturing. Qualities that aren’t so different from derby – do you agree?
M-Eighty HD. Very explosive name. Does that refer to your skating style? Personality? What?
Anything you want to share about yourself that you think we should know?
A million thank yous for letting me feature you on the blog. I know I’m supposed to be impartial, but you are easily one of my most favorite people. Your beautiful spirit always does my heart good!! (I’m sure the rest of the league will agree! And you are one heck of a snazzy dancer!)
The Skate Free or Die All-Stars won their second of two scheduled tournament bouts at the 2012 East Coast Derby Extravaganza.
By Justice Feelgood Marshall
The game between 24E New Hampshire and 16E Dominion didn’t even remotely reflect their relative rankings, as NHRD was up 35-1 after 8 minutes. Dominion shook off the bumpy opening, though, rallying to a new score of 46-34 with about 15 minutes left in the first half. Both teams suffered from major jammer penalty trouble — after a rough two-jam sequence in which Dominion jammer Buffalo Bone Crusher and NHRD jammer Moxie Moonwalk were boxed twice each, Dominion took the lead for the first time at 59-58 with 8:44 left in the first half. But two jams later, New Hampshire had a big 20 points on power jam to Madame Scurrie, and NHRD led 78-63 with about 5 minutes left in the half. They’d push the lead to 96-71 at intermission.
Dominion was only able to cut 5 points off that lead over the course of the opening ten minutes of the second half, leaving heavy underdogs New Hampshire still up 110-90. It wasn’t until there were just about 10 minutes left in the game that Dominion got the margin into single digits, with a big power jam from Jasmine Facun almost putting Dominion in front — until she back-blocked her way to the box with Dominion just one point away from tying the game. The jam ended with New Hampshire clinging to a 144-138 lead and 8:59 to play.
However, it also ended with Dominion’s box completely full; McKilla Queen rang up 15-0 on a key jam for New Hampshire to make it 159-138. NHRD held the momentum for the remainder of the game and led 171-145 with 1:54 to play as Dominion called their second timeout. Though Dominion took lead, that jam ended 0-0 on injury at NHRD jammer Liv N Fear. Dominion lost their last chance when jammer Buffalo Bone Crusher got lead but was sent to the box on her second scoring pass — NHRD jammer Madame Scurrie finished one scoring pass but played it safe by staying out of the pack for the remainder of the jam. That jam went 7-4 Dominion, but New Hampshire took their second significant rankings upset of the weekend with the 175-152 victory. Bout stats via wftda.tv.
» Read the rest of Sunday’s “undercard” action at derbynewsnetwork.com
This weekend Skate Free or Die competed at their first East Coast Derby Extravaganza. ECDX is an annual meeting that this year featured more than a thousand skaters competing in 49 bouts across three rinks!
By Justice Feelgood Marshall
River City (17E) played their second game of the day just about 5 hours after beating Central NY in the Saturday opener; their opponent was a fresher New Hampshire (24E). The story of this one was River City playing catch up for their entire 60 minutes; they fell into an early hole but pulled to within 44-30 with 10 minutes left in the first. They once against allowed NHRD to open up the lead by the intermission, but rallied again in the second half to get it down to 146-110 with 10 minutes to play and 156-129 with 5 minutes to play.
NHRD did an effective job of killing crucial clock time over the next few jams, and with under two minutes to play New Hampshire was up 162-133; there was no lead jammer call on the final jam. Although River City just happened to have the brand-new single-jam record holder on the floor with Julia Bondage jamming, that 29 point gap was too much to overcome without a power jam advantage, and New Hampshire took the WFTDA rankings upset, 169-142.
» Read up on the rest of Saturday’s “undercard” action at derbynewsnetwork.com
Number: 800 ppm
Position: Jammer, Pivot, Blocker
Rookie Year: 2009
Teams: Skate Free or Die All-Stars – 2011-2012
Seabrook Meltdowns – 2010-2012
Queen City Cherry Bombs – 2010-2011
I have to start with the obvious… Ethel Lynn Oxide – how did you come up with the name and number? (For the non-science geeks, Ethylene Oxide is a colorless flammable gas with a faintly sweet odor – or at least that’s what Wikipedia says!)
You play on both a travel team (Skate Free or Die All-Stars) and a home team (Seabrook Meltdowns.) That’s very time consuming with all of the practice time you have to put in between the two teams. Talk about your experiences on both teams; if the dynamics of a home team differ from a travel team; etc.
There is definitely a different dynamic on the Meltdowns versus SFOD, but only based on what I feel my role is on both teams. While practicing with SFOD I’m honestly just trying to keep up, not let my teammates down and absorb anything and everything I can out of our practices. This isn’t to say that Meltdown practices are easy by any means, but on the Meltdowns there’s more of a balance between sharing the skills and experience I receive from SFOD with newer skaters, while also continuing to work on skills that I need to strengthen.
You play all positions: pivot; jammer; blocker. Do you have a favorite? Being a very tiny person, do you think this helps you in any position more than the others?
Being a pivot is usually really fun, but making the wrong call can make you feel like you’re wearing a dunce cap instead of a stripe on your head.
I have a love/hate relationship with jamming and it will probably always make me want to pee myself, but the adrenaline junky in me loves it. I definitely want to improve my jamming skills and hopefully jam for SFOD at some point in my derby life.
My size has its benefits and disadvantages. I use to think that because I’m small I’d have to be a jammer, but this really isn’t the case. I’ve worked really hard at cross-training in order to build up some muscle and endurance, which has helped a lot with skating in general, but in all honesty I forget my size 99% of the time and just focus on what needs to be done.
Once I started training for derby I had a lot of help along the way, particularly from Dee-Stortion who introduced me to the sport and worked with me at open skates. Trina Trioxin and Slam I Am did a lot to help me out as well, as did so many other vets. It’s also amazing how much you can learn from watching and attempting to simulate others.
We have so many amazing women on the league with very different day lives from their derby life. Talk a little bit about what you do when you’re no on skates? What do you bring from your day job that benefits your derby “job”?
You’ve been with NHRD since 2009 and have seen a lot of changes. Where do you see the league going in the future and what do you think your role will be?
Your hair color is always a surprise. I think of it as your trademark. Have you always done the crazy colors?
And you said you were a boring person! NO WAY! Thank you for bringing your many talents (and hair colors) to NHRD. We <3 you!
Twas the eve before bout day,
Did I pack all my things?
The thoughts come unbidden
So, bout day has crept up on you and now you are in a panic. (I know I do it!) You’re stuck in your head, thinking of all the things you did or did not do, running through drills, plays, skills, and you cannot get calm.
Well, at least you think you can’t.
Take a second to think about any of the sporting events you have been to where you can see the athletes before they hit the court/track/field. What are they doing? Some have headphones on and are rocking through pushups and jumping jacks, some are laying on the ground or floor with their eyes closed, and some are gearing up so slowly that it seems they are just sitting there with one skate on and a wrist guard half strapped into place.
I have a few seemingly silly routines that I am going to share with you.
First: The night before. I drink ridiculous amounts of water through the day before a bout. Excessive amounts? Maybe. And yes, I go to the bathroom a lot the night before a bout. I also eat a healthy, yet carbohydrate fueled, dinner. And no alcohol at all for at least 72 hours. Which, when you consider a bouting and practice schedule… means I do not drink anymore.
And now Bout Day!
At the bout venue: First, I like to be early. I am almost always early. Wanna carpool with me? Best want to be early. I will gear up super slow; like snails pace. Sometimes I will run in place and walk the track without my skates. Once I have my gear on, you may find me laying on the floor with my headphones on tapping to my music. But, in my mind I am already skating. I am blocking, partnering, and really rocking the track. I then like to do a breathing exercise. I breathe in all the wonderful things about skating, and then I breathe out my nerves.
I like to nibble fruit when I feel relaxed, talk with my team. I may even munch a Peanut Butter and Banana Sandwich!
Last season I led the teams I skated with (Skate Free or Die! All Stars, and the Granite Skate Troopers) in some breathing exercises. I hope to again this year. Like a team meditation! Helping them relax, helped me.
Everyone has a routine for everything. As humans, we are creatures of habit. We do what makes us feel good when we need it. No, really!
Now… get out there… and skate!
Yes, I am a blogging slacker. I have 50% of a post all about names (choosing, wishing, disappointment and real ones) for you to read… if I ever finish it. I did research, but you know what? It turned into work, so I set it aside.
How about we talk about track psychology, and getting out of your own head?
Everyone has this happen at one time or another, of that I am sure. I find it truly hard to believe anyone goes through a sports career (pro or other) thinking “I am the greatest ever and everything I do is wonderful.” Anyone who thinks like that may have mental deficiency and is probably a true-to-life-diagnosable narcissist.
So, how do I or you or anyone get over this? What should we do to get around this mental block?
Well, I can tell you, right now I am experiencing just that. I am in my head going over all the things I did wrong and everything that went wrong that caused a wrong action and caused me to fall out of a drill. Every time I close my eyes, I feel the pain, I see the fall from the outside, I see myself clumsily struggle to regain my feet.
So, what am I not seeing?
I am not seeing that regardless of the pain I felt, I got back up. And I pushed, and I tried, and I tried, and I tried. Eventually, physical pain will get the better of anyone, though.
And now, I am working on getting over this.
Step Four (The Final Step and the Hardest Step):
I recommend now, for any new athlete or seasoned players, a book. It is called The Mind Gym: An Athlete’s Guide to Inner Excellence. If you have read it already, read it again. If you have never heard of it until now, pick it up.
Some other day, I may present you with a post about Names and the fun (and sometimes horror) of choosing one for Derby. And, I may come back to the Psychology of Sports, as it is something that fascinates me. For now… take these simple steps, and see where they take you.
Ghost hunting… talk to me! I’ve began ghost hunting in 2007 with high school friends. One night we hid in the woods behind Gilson Cemetery in Nashua and scared strangers who visited the cemetery. One of the strangers that night was Rachel Arnold who is now my best friend and founder of Paranormal Activity Research Team of New Hampshire (PART-NH for short) I joined PART-NH in 2008 and have been ghost hunting with this group ever since. We have been all over New England, and have had some PRETTY freaky experiences. Ask and I shall tell! We go with whoever is interested in coming. Check us out! We always welcome new comers!
As many of our ladies are, you are quite talented. A singer/guitarist I’m told, who performs regularly. Where do you perform? How long have you been singing? What kind of stuff do you do? Please elaborate. (And can we come and see you and cheer you on?) I’ve been playing guitar and singing for a few years now. All self taught. I picked both up towards the end of high school and into the beginning of college. I have also been playing drums since the age of 12. There is a smorgasbord of instruments just hanging about the house. My friends and family make the joke, “Chances are you, if you ask her to play it, SHE CAN!” My friend Rachel and I perform twice a week. On Sunday evenings after open skate we play in Nashua, at Penuche’s. Also, on Tuesday evenings after practice we play at Stumble Inn, which is located in North Londonderry. On Friday nights you can find us at my house with our friends playing music and doing karaoke. COME ON OVER! Every once in a great while we play at the Hudson V.F.W. just for fun. Everyone is ALWAYS welcome to watch and/or join in! We do ALL kinds of music. The Sky is the limit in our eyes. Tell us what you wanna hear, and we’ll play it!
My stealthy Ninja… you have mad skills… so awesome in fact that the Queen City Cherry Bombs awarded you the “Crouching Blocker, Hidden Jammer” award. CONGRATS! A lot of people have praised you very highly. ”Excelled” is a word often used. ”Works her ass off” another common phrase. If you don’t mind, talk about this awesomeness. My true inspiration for skating was my mother. She was an artistic skater as a child, and she LOVED it. When I was four she began to teach me, and I couldn’t stay away from it! Eventually I traded my Little Mermaid quads in for roller blades! Once middle school hit, I became completely addicted to aggressive inline skating. This continued until I was 23 when I found DERBY. Or Derby found me, I should say. Just a little different than what i was used to . “Works her ass off”, right… YES! You could say I beat myself up until I get it right! I am very honored to receive such an award and I’m grateful to all of the lovely NHRD girls who have helped me improve my derby skills. None of my accomplishments this past season could have been possible without them by my side.
Derby girls have a very “rough and tough” persona, but we are a lot deeper than that. Some things I’ve heard about you are: Family oriented. Very close to your mom; she got you interested in derby (and might even tryout for NHRD someday!) Not conceited or judgmental. All that and a home health care worker by day too! These are amazing qualities in a person. Your family must be proud of you. You betcha I’m family oriented! My Mum will definitely be a part of the league! Her goal is to be a member of the Ref Crew one day soon! I found out about derby however, from Helen Carnate! I saw her skating at an open skate one Sunday. A friend back home told me about the league, so I approached her with questions about derby and it took off from there! I owe Helen my world for introducing me to NHRD! I am probably the least judgmental person you’ll ever meet. I see potential in every person. There is just no reason not to.
You’re a kickass force to be reckoned with on the track, and a loving, caring soul to the outside world. How do you keep it all in balance? And when do you have time to ghost hunt and perform? There are only so many hours in the day! I function best when kept busy! I’m always on the go and have become great at managing my time…on most occasions . I don’t know how I still don’t own a calendar. I work early mornings, then have practice. The nights I’m not performing after practice, I go ghost hunting (weather permitting). The few hours I have during the week not devoted to this, you can find me volunteering my time at the Hudson V.F.W. with my mum, working out, painting, or what have you. I’ve been doing so much for so long it feels weird when I actually have a day to sit and veg. So weird, I usually get up and find something to do. Being active is very important to me. It keeps me happy and healthy!
You obviously have an interest in fashion, as you are quite the trendsetter. Is that just a hobby, or something you considered pursuing on a professional level? Or does that part of you go along with the performer in you? Trendsetter you say?! I do have a very big interest in fashion and I have considered pursuing it on a professional level. Unfortunately, I just don’t have the time as of right now. I do manage to find the time to sketch and design clothing. I am also very interested in hair and makeup as well. High fashion is definitely a guilty pleasure of mine. It’s a passion I hope to pursue one day.
I’m exhausted just talking to you Hoebo… or is it Peep?! You are not only an asset to NHRD, you are an asset to everyone who comes in contact with you!
HAVERHILL — By day these women lead ordinary lives: One works as a graphic designer, one is a social worker who practices law on the side, and one works at a retirement home and is a mom.
But by night they become rough-and-tumble roller derby queens who compete in an all-female league in New Hampshire.
Meet Jena Cotreau, 36, Jill Robichaud, 32, and Sherry Verdick, 35, all of Haverhill.