The Cincinnati Rollergirls (CRG) have hit the ground running in their tenth anniversary season by winning their first bout 233-167 against the Roc City Roc Stars; in the B game the Violent Lambs defeated the Roc City B-Sides 205-132. One key factor in both wins was Royal T, the white hot sophomore jammer who in a short amount of time is carving out her place as one of the top jammers to wear the Cincinnati black and silver.
Along with blocker, Macrum, Royal T played in both the A and B games last Saturday. Competing in two 60 minute games back-to-back tries the soul of many players, requiring a great deal of stamina and mental acuity. Royal T took that challenge, and after scoring 53 points and just over five points-per-jam for the Black Sheep in the first game, came back to score 91 points and 10 points-per-jam in the second game. Afterwards Royal T juggled two Fords and a Chevrolet in the parking lot as fans strolled to their cars.
Raised in Kansas City, Royal T is the middle child of seven brothers: four older and three younger. Watching her drive through opposing blockers putting them to the floor, we can see where some of that tenacity originated. That same tenacity, and some would say insanity, is what got Royal T and her “Team Ohio” teammates through six games over three days at the “Battle of the All-stars” roller derby tournament this past February in Hatfield, Pennsylvania on Bethlehem Pike. (If tournament organizers don’t use “Follow the Star to Bethlehem” in their marketing materials for this tournament, they have truly missed the boat) Royal T played in five of those games and says she was eager and fervent to play Sunday morning against Virginia, despite her aches and bruising from the drubbing of the previous four games. Likewise with her Team Ohio teammates, Royal T didn’t travel 500 plus miles to ride the pine because of a bit of pain. That’s not the mentality of a roller derby player.
Royal T sat down with me for a “Fans of Cincinnati Rollergirls” interview Sunday at the Cincinnati Gardens. She discusses her family, how her mom seeing a movie got her into the sport, and what she sees her role to be on this team. Watch Part 1 and Part 2. Coming up in April for Royal T, and Cincinnati is a closed bout against Demolition City in Indianapolis on April 3, and the B-Cup tournament in Bloomington, Ind. April 23-24. There is no doubt that Royal T has a generous portion of talent on her plate, but it is her pluck and passion that will propel her game to the next level.
The next opportunity fans have to see Royal T and the Cincinnati Rollergirls is April 9 when CRG hosts Memphis Roller Derby at the Cincinnati Gardens. This double-header also includes the Cincinnati Pit Crew’s fourth annual “Bullies at the Bout” event, featuring adoptable dogs, educational literature, merchandise and their world famous Doggie Kissing Booth. Check the Cincinnati Rollergirls website for ticket information.