After nearly two years away, WWR returned with a new-look roster – and some absolute belting matches up and down the card.
Davienne pinned Delmi Exo in 18:10 (***¾)
Riley Shepard pinned Tina San Antonio in 9:04 (**¾)
Erica Leigh pinned Becca in 17:52 (***¼)
Little Mean Kathleen pinned Kaia McKenna in 9:45 (**¾)
Boomer Hatfield & Molly McCoy pinned Eel O’Neal & Jordan Blade in 12:29 (**¾)
Jody Threat pinned Kennedi Copeland in 8:11 (***)
Megan Bayne pinned Ashley D’Amboise in 7:36 (***½)
Trish Adora submitted Willow Nightingale in 15:50 (***¾)
We’re at the White Eagle in Worcester, MA for this one – WWR’s first show in almost two years… commentary comes from Alyssa Marino & Paul Crockett.
Davienne vs. Delmi Exo
There was a fantastic set of promos in the run-up to this from Exo and Davienne in the run up to this…
— GOD QUEEN • デルミ・エクソ (@DelmiExo) May 13, 2021
— GOD QUEEN • デルミ・エクソ (@DelmiExo) May 13, 2021
— Davienne (@davienne__) May 14, 2021
During the entrances, Davienne shouted “where’s Ashley?”, in reference to her retort… in truth, Ashley Vox was off the show with fatigue after having her second covid vaccine. From the opening lock-up, Davienne took Exo to the corner as we had a rather tentative opening.
A suplex-like headlock takedown gets Exo a one-count, but Davienne replies with a front facelock of her own that Exco escaped as she turned in for a hammerlock. A series of one-counts builds up as Davienne bridges out of a cover and gets a near-fall from a backslide. The evenness continues as Exo’s side headlock led to her being pushed into the ropes, before she got knocked down… Exo’s right back up to slap Davienne ahead of a series of elbows led to Davienne getting taken into the corner and eventually to the floor. Cue a dive from Delmi, but she stops herself as Davienne walked away… before opting to cannonball off the apron into Davienne. It barely gets Delmi a one-count back inside, so she takes Davienne to the corner for a dropkick to the arm for a two-count. A surfboard stretch on the mat targets both arms, but Davienne slips free and rolled onto Delmi for a two-count… btu Exo manages to quickly regain the initiative with a suplex for a two-count.
Out of nowhere, Exo pulls a playing card from her boots – an Ace – and slices the skin between Davienne’s fingers. Somehow that’s not a DQ, as we keep going with a side headlock on the mat… but Davienne finds a way free with a splash in the corner and a back suplex. An Air Raid Crash follows for a two-count, before Davienne picked up the Ace card and stomped away on Delmi’s knee. A draping DDT off the middle rope drops Exo for a two-count, before Davienne began to assert herself with chops – while throwing in that zinger from the promo. She takes things up to the top rope, but Exo fights out of a superplex and leaps in with a missile dropkick before a Violence Party of forearms and chops had Davienne rocked.
Exo nearly wins with a Northern Lights, but Davienne returns with a sleeperhold… which was temporarily broken up with a jawbreaker. Davienne’s German suplex keeps her ahead though, before a cutter from Exo landed… she can’t make the pin, and instead hits a rolling Koppo kick to Davienne, who needed to grab the rope to save the match. I love details like that – grabbing the rope rather than kicking out, to save energy and all that. Exo goes back to the corner to grab something out of her jacket… it looks to be some snips as she takes off the middle turnbuckle pad. She tries to bait Davienne into the corner, but instead opted for a missile dropkick, which mises as Davienne then rolled her over for a Boston crab. This time the ropes save Exo, who then needed to escape a chokeslam… before an Exploder threw Davienne towards the exposed corner.
Exo crashes and burns seconds later as she charged at the cornered Davienne – who moved away as Exo hits the buckle she’d exposed – as a baseball slide dropkick took Exo into the ring post, allowing Davienne to roll her back into the ring to claim the win. This was an enjoyable, competitive opener – buoyed by those promos – but Delmi going a step too far ended up backfiring on her. ***¾
Tina San Antonio vs. Riley Shepard
We’ve a New York/New Jersey battle here, while commentary tells us that Shepard is into live-action role play…
Shepard’s thrown aside as she went for a waistlock, before she rolled through a counter on an armdrag as San Antonio ends up backing her into the corner. Shepard floats over in the corner and pulls San Antonio into some shoulder blocks, before she pulled San Antonio down into an armbar. San Antonio rakes the eyes in the corner and charged out with a clothesline as she made an opening for herself. A chinlock keeps Shepard down, as did some hairmares and snapmares. San Antonio doesn’t go for a pin after a legdrop, instead choosing to play to the crowd as a neckbreaker helped San Antonio get a couple of two-counts.
Shepard rolls away from an elbow drop and a leg drop to begin a comeback. An Exploder chucks San Antonio across the ring, but a Fireman’s carry is elbowed out of before Shepard gets San Antonio back up to hit an ushigoroshi for the win. This was very much a different style of match to the opener, with San Antonio controlling the pace before falling at the final hurdle. **¾
Becca vs. Erica Leigh
Hope you like scrunchies… and other stuff from the 90s…
Erica offers her partner a handshake to start as they went to the mat, going move-for-move as Leigh eventually nailed a pumphandle slam. Becca returns with a superkick that knocked Leigh down, ahead of a hair-pull assisted camel clutch as Becca pulled off one of her tag partner’s scrunchies. Becca’s kicks keep Leigh down as a chinlock’s fought out of… but Becca kicks Leigh into the corner as she continued to be on the aggressive side of things. Leigh’s roll-up gets a two-count as Becca resumes with a double knee drop for a two-count of her own. Some back elbows from Leigh breaks up a waistlock, but she just runs into a cutter as the momentum stays with Leigh – while Becca showed signs of frustration.
A bulldog from Leigh gets a two-count as she began the turnaround, but Becca begins to close the door with some stomps to the throat, onl to miss a moonsault off the top. Leigh returns with a clothesline for a two-count, before shoulder charges pinned Becca in the corner ahead of a leg lariat. That’s still only enough for a two-count, as was a Shining Wizard, before Becca’s head kick knocked Leigh down once more. Becca rolls Leigh down for a Muta lock, but Erica’s able to drag her way to the bottom rope. A bridging German suplex gets another near-fall as Leigh remained stubborn, eventually returning with a spiking facebuster for a near-fall. Leigh takes things up top for a superplex, but Becca pushed her down and flew in with a missile dropkick as those two-counts kept coming.
Leigh stops Becca from going back up top… but she ends up bringing Becca down with a superplex, before she went to reclaim her scrunchie. Becca resists and fires off some more kicks, only to get cough twitch a back suplex and a spear as Leigh finally found a way to get the win – and her scrunchie. A good little match over something as daft as a scrunchie – and one that definitely didn’t feel as long as it went. ***¼
Little Mean Kathleen vs. Kaia McKenna
McKenna was part of the Signature Series earlier this year, while Kathleen looks like she’s had a few espressos too many. Very hyped.
We start with McKenna taking Kathleen to the ropes, before a Test of Strength led to a knuckle lock as McKenna was suddenly on the defensive. She finds a way free with a waistlock, taking Kathleen down as they go from headlock to headscissors and back. McKenna finds a way to crucifix Kathleen for a pin, but Kathleen’s up at two and back in with a side headlock too as they jostled for position. A bow-and-arrow hold stretches Kathleen briefly as she tries to kick free… only to get sent into the ropes for a hiptoss ahead of a bulldog out of the corner as Kaia began to build some momentum. Kathleen manages to get in with some ground-and-pound, then with some tiltawhirl headscissors and some stomps in the corner. Some choking in the ropes follow as McKenna pulls herself to the corner… where she caught Kathleen’s floatover, only to get taken down in a Victory roll.
Kathleen stays on McKenna with a sleeperhold, which almost ends the match… but Kaia gets up and throws her way free. A missed charge in the corner leads to McKenna land some kicks before she hit a side Russian legsweep for a near-fall. The pair trade chops and kicks before McKenna got caught with a Northern Lights suplex as Kathleen managed to eke out the win. A good back-and-forth outing this, with Kathleen just about edging out. **¾
The Kings Of The District (Eel O’Neal & Jordan Blade) vs. The Outfielders (Boomer Hatfield & Molly McCoy)
We’ve an intergender match up next, but first an interruption from the Higher Society – Paris van Dale and Armani Kayos. They’re just here to introduce themselves and grate on the crowd.
When we get going, Blade and Hatfield scramble to the mat, where Blade looked to trap Boomer with an ankle lock… but Boomer’s able to block with a leg lock of his own as the pair rolled back to their feet. Blade rolls Boomer back down and looked for a cross armbar, before tags brought in O’Neal and McCoy. McCoy tries a roll-up, but Eel’s up at one before he took a series of kicks and some palm strikes. A clothesline drops Eel for a two-count, with McCoy hitting a crossbody to O’Neal before Blade was taken outside… setting up for a tope from Boomer into the front row. Hatfield and McCoy exchange rapid tags as O’Neal eventually took a suplex and a senton atomico for as two-count.
Blade tags back in and unloaded on McCoy with some right hands, before a whip takes McCoy into the corner for another flurry. Eel’s in for a slingshot splash, with Blade returning to keep McCoy down as the Outfielders were finding themselves in trouble. A half crab is escaped as McCoy manages to tag in Hatfield, who ran wild with dropkicks before he chucked O’Neal with a belly-to-belly, then a Michinoku driver for a near-fall. With Blade distracting the referee, O’Neal eats a double-team powerbomb for a near-fall. O’Neal recovered with a Gory stretch, before the pair headbutted each other… Blade and McCoy go at each other, with an Exploder from Blade almost winning it. O’Neal tags back in as a double-team faceplant gets a two-count on McCoy, who’s then taken up top… Molly fought free as Boomer hits a capture German suplex on O’Neal, before a combination Code Red from Hatfield and a rolling Koppo kick from McCoy gets the win. This felt a little frayed by the end, but a decent tag match that served its purpose. **¾
Kennedi Copeland vs. Jody Threat
This one started out tentatively, with Threat pushing aside Copeland… who replies with a backslide as the pair exchanged pinning attempts early.
Threat has Copeland in the ropes for some choking, then the corner for some shoulder charges as Copeland ends up getting hurled with a release overhead belly-to-belly for a two-count. Copeland nails a Divorce Court to Threat’s arm, then sidestepped a charge as Threat takes a kick in the buckles ahead of a crossbody… which Threat caught and turned into a Michinoku driver. Copeland kicks out at two from that, but instantly rolls outside, drawing in Threat… whose charge gets tripped as the Canadian ate a chair. Kennedi torques Threat’s arm through a chair, then slammed it… but Threat breaks free and throws the chair back at her, before Copeland tried to throw Threat’s arm into the ring post.
There’s eventually some separation, as Threat fought back with a stalling suplex onto the floor. That was a sick/satisfying thud, depending on your perspective… Threat rolls Copeland back inside, but gets tripped as Kennedi pounces with an armbar attempt, but Threat powerbombs her way free. A torture rack followed, with Threat spinning out into a Blue Thunder Bomb… and that’s your lot. Pretty short at about eight minutes, but they packed a fair amount in – with the finish after that suplex on the floor being pretty impressive to boot. ***
Ashley D’Amboise vs. Megan Bayne
Both of these women recently appeared for AEW’s YouTube shows – and if you’re a fan of wrestling in Louisville, you’ll remember Bayne’s run with the OVW Women’s title back in the summer of 2019. Her character and look is massively different now, positively Grecian…
Bayne charges D’Amboise into the corner to start, before a headlock takedown was quickly escaped as D’Amboise countered with headscissors. Bayne escapes, and floats back with a side headlock, with D’Amboise quickly trying to roll her way free as these two were going at quite a pace. D’Amboise cartwheels out of a wristlock, but gets kneed in the gut as a headlock takedown has her back down… getting back to her feet, D’Amboise pushes off, but gets caught by Bayne, who then hesitates as D’Amboise tried to kick her while running the ropes. Eventually taking her to the mat, D’Amboise works Bayne’s arm, then hit shoulder tackles before running into a Samoan drop.
Stomps from Bayne take D’Amboise into the corner, where shoulder charges aim for the kidneys, before a snap suplex kept her ahead. D’Amboise fought back, slipping out of a slam to lock on a sleeper… but Bayne just dumps her with a back suplex to quickly break it up. A tiltawhirl slam from Bayne follows for a couple of two-counts, before another powerslam dropped D’Amboise… who still had enough in her to escape a back senton. D’Amboise hits a jawbreaker as she tried to chip away on Bayne, whipping her from corner-to-corner ahead of a suplex. A kip up has D’Amboise back on her feet, with a neckbreaker following as Bayne was on the proverbial ropes… but D’Amboise’s crossbody gets caught and turned into a swinging side slam for the win. I frigging adored this – give me an all-action sprint, and I’ll eat it up. It says a lot when you come from (virtually) nowhere to have the crowd chanting for you by the end – and hopefully this is the start of something for Bayne, while D’Amboise looked really solid for the experience under her belt. Give this ten minutes of your time! ***½
Trish Adora vs. Willow Nightingale
We open with a handshake between Nightingale and the winner of February’s Iron Match, as both women trade holds to start, with Adora taking things to the mat.
Nightingale manages to get free, going from a side headlock to a takedown, but Adora escapes and returns with one of her own as we reached a stand-off. Willow offers a Test of Strength, bending Adora over her knee before sweeping the leg… but Trish just bridges up to break the pin! Adora manages to respond, working over Nightingale’s arm, reversing an Irish whip before she tried to take Willow’s arm into the corner. Nightingale manages to get free and POUNCES Adora into the corner, before she rolled some suplexes together, finishing with a Fisherman suplex for a near-fall.
A spinning heel kick keeps Nightingale ahead, before a leg lace from Nightingale set up for a wacky STF. After escaping, Adora looked to pull in Nightingale for a wristlock, but that’s escaped as Willow took her to the corner… but Trish escapes a charge and responded with an elbow strike. Nightingale’s got some of her own, as things descended into a strike battle, with Willow eventually getting elbowed back down. Trish builds up by taking Nightingale arm-first into the corner, before a Judo throw/hiptoss combo gets a two-count. Cattle Mutilation’s next from Adora, but Nightingale manages to get back to her feet as she breaks up the hold in the corner. An Angle Slam drops Adora for a two-count, as the pair then went back to trading kicks… Willow’s enziguiri is ducked, but she recovers as Adora teased another Cattle Mutilation, with a load of standing switches leading to Adora just rolling Nightingale down for a two-count.
An enziguiri drops Nightingale, as the pair head onto the apron… with Willow quickly returning fire with a death valley driver onto the edge of the ring. Adora’s able to recover to avoid being thrown into the ring post, sending Nightingale there before Trish accidentally chopped the ring post… and from there it’s back into the ring for a cannonball. Nightingale heads up top, but misses a moonsault… she’s back with a gutwrench, only to get cradled for a near-fall, before Adora re-applied the Cattle Mutilation for the flash stoppage. I’m always on-board with flash stoppages for submissions – they help give holds legitimacy as finishers. A true out-of-nowhere finish to a match that left you wanting more. ***¾
We don’t have too long to wait for the second show, as WWR+ returns on June 20th…
Their first show in nearly two years, this really was a restart for WWR, with virtually a complete roster refresh. So with that in mind, this was a show with little in the way of storylines, save for the “teammates collide” angle with Becca and Erica Leigh, plus the cracker that opened between Davienne and Delmi Exo. What we got here were a lot of works in progress and a massively enjoyable show – It’s been spoken of ad nauseum, but the indys are in a restocking phase, but there’s plenty of potential still out there.