Quidditch team fosters friendship

Sophomore+Jacob+Curtis+participates+in+a+Quidditch+team+practice%2C+Sept.+24.+After+five-year+break+from+national+competition%2C+the+team+plans+to+rejoin+the+U.S.+Quidditch+League+in+the+coming+months.+%0A
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Quidditch team fosters friendship

Sophomore Jacob Curtis participates in a Quidditch team practice, Sept. 24. After five-year break from national competition, the team plans to rejoin the U.S. Quidditch League in the coming months.

Sophomore Jacob Curtis participates in a Quidditch team practice, Sept. 24. After five-year break from national competition, the team plans to rejoin the U.S. Quidditch League in the coming months.

Lilly Page

Sophomore Jacob Curtis participates in a Quidditch team practice, Sept. 24. After five-year break from national competition, the team plans to rejoin the U.S. Quidditch League in the coming months.

Lilly Page

Lilly Page

Sophomore Jacob Curtis participates in a Quidditch team practice, Sept. 24. After five-year break from national competition, the team plans to rejoin the U.S. Quidditch League in the coming months.

Lilly Page, Staff Writer

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If you see students running around on the Redstone green with PVC pipes between their legs, it might be the UVM Quidditch team preparing for their next tournament.

On a Tuesday in early fall, the team practiced on Redstone green, laughing and joking around, but got serious when it came to the physical game.

Tossing around volleyballs, one player was hit in the face while another attempted to pass it, and many took digs into the dirt while trying to catch the flying balls.

Now, more than just the New England community can see the UVM team in action. UVM’s Quidditch team is returning to the national playing field after a five-year break.

In the coming months, the UVM Quidditch Club will rejoin the U.S. Quidditch League to help bring more opportunities to the club and to get involved in a bigger community of Quidditch players.

This isn’t an easy transition, but senior Tom DeMouth, president of the club, said he has high hopes for the team, outlining their goal for the season.

“I want to make it to nationals and show the Northeast region that we have what it takes,” he said.

Considering the enthusiasm the players have for the sport and the efforts shown at practices, that shouldn’t be a hard goal to obtain, he said.

“[Joining the league] represents a challenge for us to overcome,” he said. “The competition on a regional and national scale appealed to us. I’m really excited.”

Junior CJ Cater agrees, saying that he is excited to face tougher competition than they are used to seeing at unofficial tournaments.

First-year Emily Robbins said that despite people’s initial thoughts, Quidditch is, in fact, a sport.

“People think that we are a ton of nerds running around with sticks, which is partly true, but it’s definitely a sport,” she said. “It’s a workout, during practice we do warm-ups just like any other team, we go through drills and scrimmages.”

Some players are in it for the sport, not because of the Harry Potter books and movies.

“Personally, I’ve never read the books,” Carter said. “And it took me until my first-year to watch all of the movies.”

Carter, who has been playing the sport since he was 8 years old, described the sport as having “elements of basketball, dodgeball and rugby.”

The game is played similarly to how it’s played in the Harry Potter books, with the positions remaining the same. The “broomsticks” are white PVC pipes.

“You have the chasers, who do a lot of the point-scoring in the hoops, beaters, who can eliminate people from play, keepers, who are the goalies, and the seeker, who are working to catch the snitch, a little ball that is velcroed to a snitch runner’s butt,” Carter explained.

But while the team is focused on the competition, there is also a friendly setting, evident by the strong bonds between the players.

“We really stress that we are friends and family, and we are very tight-knit,” Robbins said. “Our team is nicknamed ‘The Friendship Athletes,’ and [the team] has a very community-like feel.”

Carter said that the team will take anyone and everyone who wants to play.