The West Kootenay Roller Derby (WKRD) all-star team, the Kootenay Kannibelles, returned victorious and undefeated from the Spokarnage tournament at the end of April.
The 20-team, three day tournament hosted by Spokane’s Spokannibals featured seven teams from Canada including WKRD house teams, the Rossland/Trail Roller Girls and the Dam City Rollers, along with 13 teams from the pacific northwest U.S.
After a strong start with a 163-12 victory over the Ranier Roller Girls on Friday evening the sixth-seeded Kannibelles returned to the track Saturday for hard fought wins played in half length bouts against Canadian opposition, in the form of Fernie’s Avalanche City and Burnaby’s Anarchy Angels. Those two victories meant the ‘Belles missed the full length Saturday evening bouts and moved straight to the semi final the next day.
Sunday morning saw the bleachers at the Spokane Convention Centre packed as the Kannibelles took on the number one seeds and only other unbeaten team in the tournament, the Sockit Wenches from Seattle. Spurred on by the chants of “Hungry, hungry” from their WKRD league-mates and supporters the ‘Belles ground out a 150-126 win in a physical and often heated battle. Having advanced to the final the Kannibelles waited for their opponents to be decided, only to face the Sockit Wenches again.
Once again the Kannibelles took down their higher-ranked opponents 202-118 to take the tournament along with the $700 first prize.
Kannibelles coach, Phil Yer Pants, said it was beyond what the team had expected going into the tournament. “We entered Spokarnage expecting to be competitive but our main focus was to use the tournament as an opportunity to grow as a team and build towards the Canadian western championships in July.” Pants added “The whole team skated so strongly all weekend and to come away undefeated and with so many new fans and friends was amazing.”
If you want to see the Kannibelles for yourself they’re next bout will be in Castlegar on June 1, as they entertain the Spokannibals as part of Sunfest. Check www.kootenayrollerderby.com for information.