From the Ithaca Journal
May 8, 2013
ITHACA â€” Ladies, lace up those skates.
The Ithaca League of Women Rollers will kick off its sixth season Saturday when its flagship team, the Ithaca SufferJets, takes on longstanding rivals the RocStars, from Rochester, at Cass Park Rink.
â€œThey had their first season in 2008, just as we did, and we beat them that year,â€ said Ithaca roller Kitty Gifford, or Chairman Meow, as sheâ€™s known on the track. â€œWeâ€™ve had three games since. Our last game was in the fall at the Empire Skate Showdown, and it was a two-point loss. We have a good matchup. Theyâ€™re close games.â€
The SufferJetsâ€™ 2008 debut came after the league spinned off from the Assault City Roller Derby League, of Syracuse. As membership increased, the league added a second team, the BlueStockings, in 2010. A junior league division, the Ithaca League of Junior Rollers, was rolled out later that year.
â€œEverybody thinks that we punch people or kick people or fight or that itâ€™s fake or something. But itâ€™s not. Itâ€™s completely real,â€ said Regina DeMauro-Axel, also known as Valerie Valkyrie. â€œEverything we do is based on athleticism and performance. We practice really hard. And thereâ€™s rules. Weâ€™re not just getting on the track and kicking each other in the face.â€
Saturdayâ€™s bout begins at 7 p.m. Doors open at 6. General-admission tickets are $8 in advance, $10 at the door for adults, $5 for children 13 and older. Children under 13 are free.