The Chicago Outfit welcomes: The Shakedown

As you all know, the Chicago Outfit is one big family of happy, pretty roller skaters.  This past December, just before our 2011 season began, the family doubled in size.  This year’s recruitment brought in more rookie skaters than the Outfit has ever seen!  Since the league has an “everybody-plays-on-an-active-roller-derby-team-against-other-leagues-and-teams” policy, the league had to make some changes.  There was not enough room for all of the skaters to play for The Syndicate or Shade Brigade, so we created (ta-dahhhh) The Shakedown!

The Shakedown is the league’s “C-team,” set up so that all of our league members can have real bouting experience.  Coached by Syndicate skaters Smashley Destructo and Valerie of the Dolls, we are an excited and energetic group of rookie to intermediate-level skaters.  The Shakedown is a travel team, just like The Syndicate and Shade Brigade, so we will be playing other C-teams from the Midwest for the rest of this season, and it’s likely we will have a full season of bouts in 2012! On Sunday, July 10, The Shakedown had its first game against the St Louis Rookie Rivals.  After a long double header the day before (Syndicate kicked butt! Read the DNN recap here!), we were ready to take on the Rivals bright and early at 10am at Fleetwood Roller Rink.  After a motivational team breakfast and some pep talks from the coaches, the game began!

To be honest, it was pretty rocky.  (I personally spent most of my time as a jammer in the box…)  For many of the girls on the Shakedown, it was our first bout, (ever!)   Nerves were all over the place, and it was a change of pace to hipcheck strangers!

The Rivals were a tough team, with quick jammers and strong blockers, but we put up a fight.  As a brand new team (we had not even practiced as a team before!) our goal was togetherness, communication and teamwork.

Shakedown 3-Wall

We fought until the end, never looking at the scoreboard.  We had many successful executions of great game strategy, as well as some awesome individual feats of strength! Rude E. Huxtable gave some wicked hits and was a stall blocker for the books, and Lemmy Destroyer and Heleanor Throosevelt racked up points as jammers!  We lost pretty badly…(The final score was 71-180) and we racked up the penalties, but it was a learning experience for all of us.

What I learned as a new skater is that when the clock starts, the game goes FAST! It feels like time flies, and it sure is hard to get your brain and body to sync up when you’re in the moment!  I learned how awesome it feels to see your teammates kick butt, especially the ones that have only learned to roller skate this past winter.  I also learned that scrimmaging against our own league is a great way to toughen up, since nobody is scarier than the Chicago Outfit Syndicate. Our next bout is August 26: an away game against the Quad City Rollers of Iowa.  The Shakedown is now practicing as a team, so we’re ready to kick some rollerbooty when we get to town!     If you know a rookie team, startup league, or other opponents for the Chicago Outfit Shakedown, contact our interleague coordinator, Bloody Elle and let’s set up a play date!