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HILO, Hawaii – Roller skates, helmets, painted faces, colorful outfits, suggestive uniforms, and names you wont find in a Hilo phonebook.
This is not your run of the mill local sporting event.
For the third time, the Afook-Chinen Civic Auditorium was filled with rabid roller derby fans – of all colors – to see the hometown Paradise Roller Girls do battle.
On Saturday, the opponents were the feared Maui Roller Girls, a big challenge for the Big Island team. The Paradise Roller Girls were competitive in the first half of the bout, skating and crashing their way to remain neck and neck with their more experienced opponents. But eventually, Maui pulled away for the 148-80 victory.
Despite the tough loss, team captain Anita Whiskey – whose jersey number is “90 proof”, of course – said there were a lot of positives about the team’s performance.
Coach Blue “Irish I Was Bashin’ Ya” Davis seemed quite happy with the girl’s performance, as well. Coach Davis, perhaps the most charismatic girl on the whole team, says the sport’s re-emergence has been a long time coming.
From the looks of the response from the crowded stands, roller derby hits the mark here in Hilo; a new generation of jammers and blockers, leading the renaissance of the wahine sport here in Hawaii … and all else that comes with it.