Our August Derby Girl of the Month, Bait and Stitch #303, is a boot camp success story.
Stitch first fell in love with roller derby when she saw a 2016 LA Derby Dolls banked track bout in SoCal, but sadly didn’t live near a flat-track league at the time. She later moved to Santa Cruz, and stumbled upon an invitation to Santa Cruz Derby Girls’ 2017 winter boot camp. She attended the league open house that January, and now, just two years later, she co-captains SCDG’s competitive C-team, the Seabright Sirens! The Sirens Coach, Ranger, believes Stitch, “epitomizes the role of a captain. She has a balanced, cerebral approach to her craft, always seeking improvement.”
Stitch supports the league with her leadership and technical prowess. As the Sirens’ co-captain, she advocates for her teammates to make sure their voice is heard by the entire league. Behind the scenes, Stitch keeps the Santa Cruz Derby Girls website current, organizes photo shoots, and even creates some of our marketing content. Our May the 4th, Star Wars themed bout poster was a Bait and Stitch original!
When you see her skating as a blocker or pivot on the track, you would hardly believe her early skating was limited to birthday parties and field trips with her niece. Stitch’s success on skates is largely due to how much time and effort she invests in the sport off the track. When Stitch began playing derby, she focused her training solely on on-track practice time. Since then, she’s realized that even greater improvements in sport occur with “cross training, eating right, and going to the gym.” One of her biggest pieces of advice to newer skaters is to shift their energy into maximizing off-skates endeavors to supplement their derby learning.
Not only has Stitch discovered her strong and athletic self in roller derby, but she’s also found a new family. Being a part of the Santa Cruz Derby Girls helped Stitch find the community she was looking for, and she’s made some of her best lifelong friends in the league. When she started roller derby boot camp in 2017, Stitch found her doppelganger, Kraken. These look-alike derby twins take selfies before every bout to chronicle their on-skates adventures together.
Stitch even found romance at derby! Last year, after her first home bout at the Santa Cruz Civic, Stitch got engaged. Her partner Blake planned the whole proposal with the games committee and a thoroughly-surprised Stitch said yes!
Stitch loves tasty desserts and is known to sample almost all the ice cream flavors before choosing one at the creamery. But a little known fact about Stitch, who by all accounts is one of the kindest and most generous people you’ll ever meet, is that (like her namesake and favorite Disney character), she is not very good at sharing those desserts.
But don’t worry, what Stitch lacks in ice cream-sharing ability she makes up for tenfold in the warmth and kindest she brings to her relationships on and off the track. Her teammate and Sirens co-captain, Gunz, shares the sentiment about Stitch’s positive attitude, that it, “helps make our team a welcoming, fun, and hardworking place to play derby.” When you’re lucky enough to meet her, you’ll definitely get the feeling of “O’hana,” or family, that Stitch brings with her wherever she goes.
Please join us in shouting out a, “Salty little team!” to honor Bait and Stitch, our August Derby Girl of the Month.