Minnesota RollerGirls

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Minnesota RollerGirls
League logo
Metro areaMinneapolis-Saint Paul
CountryUnited States
FoundedAugust 2004
TeamsMNRG All-Stars (A team)
Minnesota Nice (B team)
Atomic Bombshells
Dagger Dolls
Garda Belts
DebuTaunts (training and development team)
Juniors (under-18 training program)
Track type(s)Flat
VenueRoy Wilkins Auditorium
Org. typeLLC

The Minnesota RollerGirls (MNRG) is a women's flat track roller derby league based in Saint Paul, Minnesota, in the United States. Founded in August 2004 by the Donnelly sisters, MNRG was one of the first 30 members of the Women's Flat Track Derby Association (WFTDA) by early 2006.[1] Today the league has over 80 skaters playing on four home teams as well as their All-Star team,[2] which competes in the WFTDA's Division 1.[3]

League and business structure[edit]

Over 3,700 spectators attend the opening bout of the 2007 season

Since 2005,[4] the league has played and practiced at the Roy Wilkins Auditorium[5] in St. Paul, with capacity for up to 4,000 spectators for roller derby,[6] and average attendance ranging between 1,800 and 3,000 fans at MNRG events.[7] MNRG claims to be the first league in the country to have a professional space for practices and bouts.[2]

The Minnesota RollerGirls is a limited liability corporation composed of volunteer skaters aged 18 years and older and other volunteers. No skater or volunteer associated with the Minnesota RollerGirls is paid, nor do they profit based upon level of involvement or upon team wins. Proceeds raised by the league pay for practice space rental, legal and promotional fees, as well as traveling costs to play other WFTDA members in other states and in other countries. The remainder of the revenues are donated to a variety of local charities, with a general focus on organizations that benefit women.[8]

In 2011, MNRG began the DebuTaunts training and recreation program as a way to bring additional skaters into the league. By 2015, almost all new skaters in the league had spent at least one session in the recreation and training program. In 2016, the DebuTaunts began regularly bouting against regional opponents including Chippewa Valley Roller Derby (Eau Claire, Wisconsin) and the Roller Underground Dirty Ores (Eveleth, Minnesota), and by 2019 the DebuTaunts program was re-envisioned as a primary "on-ramp" into Minnesota RollerGirls. In 2018, the league also began a junior roller derby program, bringing its training resources in line with other top-tier roller derby leagues.

In November, 2015, the Minnesota RollerGirls were the host league for the 2015 International WFTDA Championships at the Roy Wilkins Auditorium, and in May 2016, Visit Saint Paul named the Championships as their 2015 Event of the Year.[9][10] The Minnesota All-Stars also competed at the tournament, losing their sole opening round game, 185-173 to Texas Rollergirls of Austin.[11]

The Minnesota RollerGirls were ranked ninth in the world, as of September 25, 2016.[3]

Home Teams[edit]

Minnesota RollerGirls Home Teams
Minnesota RollerGirls Atomic Bombshells Fall 2012.jpg
Atomic Bombshells
Minnesota RollerGirls Garda Belts Fall 2012.jpg
Garda Belts
Minnesota RollerGirls Dagger Dolls Fall 2012.jpg
Dagger Dolls
Minnesota RollerGirls Rockits Fall 2012.jpg

The Minnesota RollerGirls is composed of four home teams: the Atomic Bombshells, the Dagger Dolls, the Garda Belts, and the Rockits. The Silver Bullets, which competed only in the league's inaugural season, were reorganized and re-themed as the Rockits for the 2005-06 season and have remained the Rockits ever since. Each team has a maximum of twenty players. The four teams play against each other at home, with these games comprising the home season. Every MNRG home season concludes with a championship game, with the winner receiving the championship trophy, known as The Golden Skate.[12]

Dagger Dolls win the Golden Skate in 2012
Winners of the Golden Skate
Year Season Champion
2005 Dagger Dolls
2006 The Rockits
2007 Atomic Bombshells
2008 The Rockits
2009 The Rockits
2010 Atomic Bombshells
2011 The Rockits
2012 Dagger Dolls
2013 Atomic Bombshells
2014 Garda Belts
2015 Dagger Dolls
2016 Atomic Bombshells
2017 Atomic Bombshells
2018 Atomic Bombshells

In 2018 a new trophy for the winner of the third-place game was unveiled. The inaugural Bronze Bearing Trophy was won for the first time by the Garda Belts.

Winners of the Bronze Bearing
Year Season Champion
2018 Garda Belts

Travel Team[edit]

MNRG All-Stars

The Minnesota RollerGirls All-Stars are the league's charter all-star interleague team. This team of elite skaters, drawn from the home teams, trains together year-round and travels for sanctioned WFTDA bouts throughout the year.[13]

The Minnesota Nice are the other half of the All-Stars program. The league's B-team are both a pool of dedicated B-team skaters and a backup personnel pool that the Minnesota All-Stars can draw from in the event of an injury or a skater leaving the program due to pregnancy or employment opportunities outside the Twin Cities. The Nice also travel to tournaments and plays in national- and international-level B-team competitions.

Minnesota was one of the pioneers of the "wall" technique of blocking, where blockers engage the jammer as a unit rather than individually. Their tenacious defense has earned the nickname "the Great Wall of Saint Paul."[14]

WFTDA competition[edit]

The Minnesota RollerGirls All-Stars have qualified for WFTDA Playoffs and/or WFTDA Championships every year since the first Championship, the Dust Devil tournament, in 2006, at which they placed fourth overall.[15] In 2007[16] and 2008,[17] as members of the WFTDA's East Region, the All-Stars competed at the annual WFTDA Eastern Regional Tournament without advancing to the Championship.

Starting with 2009,[18] MNRG qualified for the WFTDA North Central Regional Tournament for all four years, advancing to compete in the WFTDA Championships in 2010,[19] 2011[20] and 2012.[21] MNRG hosted the 2009 North Central Regional Tournament, the "Brawl of America", at Roy Wilkins Auditorium, at which they came in ninth place.[22]

Minnesota has a long-standing rivalry with Chicago's Windy City Rollers, and in June 2012 the two teams played to a rare tie in WFTDA-sanctioned play.[23] The tie (later upheld upon review by the WFTDA)[24] resulted from a scorekeeping correction made well after the end of play, avoiding a potential overtime jam[25] which ordinarily would have settled the score. In the 2013 revision of the Rules of Flat Track Roller Derby, it was specified that the score at the time the game-ending whistle is blown, once confirmed by the officials at the end of game time, is official and that scorekeeping errors must stand if any are discovered after the official final score is recorded.

In 2013, the Women's Flat Track Derby Association realigned its competitive divisions to emphasize teams' win-loss record and difficulty of opponents rather than organizing by regions. The Minnesota RollerGirls have competed at Division 1 Playoffs since the introduction of the Divisional system.

In 2018 the league declined invitation to the WFTDA Playoffs in A Coruña, Spain, citing the cost of air travel to the city.[26]


2006 map showing the first 30 WFTDA member leagues
Season Final ranking[27] Playoffs Championship
2006 6 WFTDA[28] 4[15]
2007 11 WFTDA[29] R2 E[16] DNQ
2008 4 E[30] 11 E[17] DNQ
2009 7 NC[31] 9 NC[22] DNQ
2010 2 NC[32] 2 NC[33] R1[34]
2011 2 NC[35] 2 NC[36] QF [37]
2012 2 NC[38] 1 NC[39] QF [40]
2013 17 WFTDA[41] 4 D1[42] DNQ
2014 7 WFTDA[43] 3 D1[44] R1 D1[45]
2015 12 WFTDA[46] 3 D1[47] R1 D1[11]
2016 10 WFTDA[48] 2 D1[49] R1 D1[50]
2017 17 WFTDA[51] 4 D1[52] CR D1[53]
2018 17 WFTDA[54] DNP[26] DNQ
  • CR = consolation round
  • DNP = did not play

Interleague bouting record[edit]

Although the Minnesota RollerGirls home teams occasionally play against other leagues, the majority of their bouts are played by their all-star interleague team.

MNRG in the community[edit]

The Minnesota RollerGirls has been featured in numerous local media outlets, such as the Star Tribune,[4][55] the Pulse of the Twin Cities,[56] vita.mn,[57] Minnesota Public Radio,[58] and the City Pages,[59] and were briefly featured in a Coca-Cola/NASCAR national ad campaign.[60]

The Minnesota RollerGirls is sponsored by a variety of local and national companies, including: The Onion, Minnesota Public Radio 89.3: The Current, Ultra Creative, Archetype Design, Saint Paul Athletic Club, Fiant Dental, and Pizza Lucé, among others.[61]

Minnesota All-Stars Lynn "Juke Boxx" Klass and Melissa "Medusa" Arnold represented the United States on Team USA at the 2011 Roller Derby World Cup.[62] In 2014, Juke Boxx returned to the Team USA roster, joined by Dana "Second Hand Smoke" Noss, for the 2014 Roller Derby World Cup.[63]


  1. ^ "Member Leagues". WFTDA.com. Archived from the original on 9 April 2006. Retrieved 30 September 2012.
  2. ^ a b "About the Minnesota RollerGirls". Minnesota RollerGirls.
  3. ^ a b "Current Rankings". WFTDA. Archived from the original on 2 February 2009. Retrieved 30 September 2012.
  4. ^ a b Adler, Erin (25 December 2007). "This is how we roll". Star Tribune. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  5. ^ "Roy Wilkins Auditorium". www.theroy.org. Roy Wilkins Auditorium. Archived from the original on 10 December 2005. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  6. ^ "Minnesota Roller Girls Fact Sheet" (PDF). xcelenergycenter.com. Xcel Energy Center. Archived from the original (PDF) on March 2012. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  7. ^ Schaust, Sam (28 November 2016). "Roller Derby Thrives In Minnesota". Twin Cities Business. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  8. ^ "About the Minnesota RollerGirls :: Supported Charities".
  9. ^ "Visit Saint Paul Honored Companies, Events, Individuals for 2015 Tourism Impact | National". ncal.meetingsmags.com. Minnesota Meettings + Events. 3 May 2016. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  10. ^ "2015 International WFTDA Championships Named Event of the Year - LatestNews - Women's Flat Track Derby Association". wftda.org. WFTDA. 20 May 2016. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  11. ^ a b "D1 Champs: Texas squeezes past Minnesota, 185-173". Derby Central. 7 November 2015. Retrieved 9 December 2016.
  12. ^ "League History".
  13. ^ "Teams & Staff". Minnesota RollerGirls. Retrieved 26 September 2012.
  14. ^ Deadwards, Lisa (22 September 2016). "2016 WFTDA D1 Playoffs: Madison Preview". Derby Central. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  15. ^ a b "February 2006 Dust Devil Invitational Rankings", WFTDA [version of 23 February 2007]
  16. ^ a b "2007 Heartland Havoc". Ohio Roller Girls. Archived from the original on 6 April 2008. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  17. ^ a b Marshall, Justice Feelgood (10 October 2008). "Eastern Regionals: Complete Capsule Recaps | Derby News Network". Derby News Network. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  18. ^ "Brawl of America". WFTDA. Retrieved 30 September 2012.
  19. ^ "Uproar on the Lakeshore 2010 WFTDA Championships". WFTDA. Retrieved 30 September 2012.
  20. ^ "Continental Divide and Conquer 2011 WFTDA Championships". WFTDA. Retrieved 30 September 2012.
  21. ^ "North Central Region Playoffs". WFTDA. Retrieved 30 September 2012.
  22. ^ a b "Brawl of America 2009 North Central Regionals", WFTDA
  23. ^ Marshall, Justice Feelgood (17 June 2012). "(13) Minnesota, (4) Windy City Play to Stalemate | Derby News Network". Derby News Network. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  24. ^ "Games Review Panel Finding on Minnesota-Windy City Tie Bout - Press Releases - Women's Flat Track Derby Association". wftda.org. WFTDA. 6 July 2012. Retrieved 9 December 2016.
  25. ^ "1.5.1 Overtime — The Rules of Flat Track Roller Derby". rules.wftda.com. WFTDA. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  26. ^ a b "2018 WFTDA Playoff Bracket Releases to a Record Number of Declines". The Apex. 16 July 2018. Retrieved 4 January 2019.
  27. ^ "Current Rankings", WFTDA
  28. ^ "12/8/2006 WFTDA National Rankings", WFTDA [version of 23 February 2007]
  29. ^ "Current WFTDA Rankings", Derby News Network, October 2007
  30. ^ "Rankings – WFTDA". wftda.com. WFTDA. Archived from the original on 2 February 2009. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  31. ^ "Current Rankings". WFTDA. Archived from the original on 30 April 2010. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  32. ^ "Current Rankings". WFTDA. Archived from the original on 2 March 2011. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  33. ^ "Thunda on the Tundra2010 North Central Region Playoffs - Women's Flat Track Derby Association". wftda.org. WFTDA. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  34. ^ Marshall, Justice Feelgood (5 November 2010). "2010 WFTDA Championships Recaps | Derby News Network". Derby News Network. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  35. ^ "Current Rankings". WFTDA. Archived from the original on 25 January 2012. Retrieved 7 December 2016.
  36. ^ "1NC Windy City Retains Region Title Despite Strong Challenge From 3NC Minnesota | Derby News Network". Derby News Network. 10 October 2011. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  37. ^ Marshall, Justice Feelgood (12 November 2011). "Championships Quarterfinal: 1SC Texas Comes Back on 2NC Minnesota, 141-108 | Derby News Network". Derby News Network. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  38. ^ "Current Rankings". WFTDA. Archived from the original on 20 March 2013. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  39. ^ Marshall, Justice Feelgood (17 September 2012). "NC Championship: 1NC Windy City Unties 2NC Minnesota, 165-153 | Derby News Network". Derby News Network. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  40. ^ "Tournament Schedule and Scores - Women's Flat Track Derby Association". wftda.org. WFTDA. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  41. ^ "Rankings: December 31, 2013". WFTDA. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  42. ^ "D1 Playoffs Asheville, NC". WFTDA. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  43. ^ "Rankings: December 31, 2014 – WFTDA". wftda.com. WFTDA. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  44. ^ "D1 Playoffs Sacramento, CA". WFTDA. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  45. ^ "WFTDA Championships Nashville, TN - Schedule". wftda.org. WFTDA. Retrieved 9 December 2016.
  46. ^ "Rankings: December 31, 2015 – WFTDA". wftda.com. WFTDA. Retrieved 9 December 2016.
  47. ^ Deadwards, Lisa (4 October 2015). "D1O 3rd Place: #3 Minnesota Skids Past #4 Montreal, 162-134". Derby Central. Retrieved 9 December 2016.
  48. ^ "Rankings: December 31, 2016 – WFTDA". wftda.com. WFTDA. Retrieved 6 January 2017.
  49. ^ "D1M: #1 Gotham trounces #3 Minnesota, 326-71". Derby Central. 25 September 2016. Retrieved 9 December 2016.
  50. ^ Deadwards, Lisa (5 November 2016). "WFTDA Champs: #10 Jacksonville vs #9 Minnesota, 207-158". Derby Central. Retrieved 9 December 2016.
  51. ^ "Rankings: December 31, 2017 – WFTDA". wftda.com. WFTDA. Retrieved 5 January 2018.
  52. ^ Deadwards, Lisa (25 September 2017). "D1D 3rd Place: #3 Arch Rival bests #4 Minnesota, 186-91". Derby Central. Retrieved 4 January 2018.
  53. ^ "2017 D1 Champs: #6 Texas defeats #16 Minnesota, 280-153". Derby Central. 10 November 2017. Retrieved 4 January 2018.
  54. ^ "Rankings: December 31, 2018 – WFTDA". wftda.com. WFTDA. Retrieved 10 January 2019.
  55. ^ Dochterman, Robyn (2005-02-27). "Let's Tangle: Roller derby is back". Star Tribune.
  56. ^ Hobbes, Dwight (February 2006). "Heck on Wheels: Minnesota RollerGirls". Pulse of the Twin Cities.
  57. ^ Adler, Erin (2007-06-05). "Rollergirls: The Profiles". vita.mn.
  58. ^ Totten, Sanden (2006-02-24). "Roller derby revival charges into national spotlight". Minnesota Public Radio.
  59. ^ Thomas, Lindsey (2004-11-17). "Would the WNBA Be More Popular If It Had Players Named Dixie Wrect?". 25 (1250). City Pages.
  60. ^ "Derby Dish". Minnesota RollerGirls. 2006-03-15.
  61. ^ "Minnesota RollerGirls :: Sponsors".
  62. ^ Marshall, Justice Feelgood (5 August 2011). "Team USA Announces 28-Skater Roster | Derby News Network". Derby News Network. Retrieved 9 December 2016.
  63. ^ Frye, Andy (3 June 2015). "How Disappointment Fired Up Dana Noss And Made Her A Roller Derby Star". espnW. ESPN. Retrieved 8 December 2016.

See Also[edit]

External links[edit]

  • Minnesota RollerGirls - Minnesota RollerGirls' official site
  • Tickets - Minnesota RollerGirls' ticket info
  • Merch - Minnesota RollerGirls' Merchandise
  • WFTDA - Women's Flat Track Derby Association