The magical world of quidditch


Upon attending my first-ever muggle Quidditch game on campus, all that I had remembered about Quidditch came from my childhood imagination. On Sunday’s match against Middlebury, the six-time World Cup Champions, the UVM Quidditch team brought to life the imaginary sport of Harry Potter. On a surprisingly warm October day, the UVM Quidditch team — dressed in tie-dyed Harry Potter themed shirts with the likes of Granger Danger, 9 ¾, Weasley, Moody and Lovegood written on the backs for identification — ran around joyously in preparation for their match.

The game of Quidditch holds strikingly true to its fantastical inspiration. On either team’s side stand three circular goals. A single keeper defends these goals from chasers wielding a quaffle. The quaffle, when thrown into a goal, is worth ten points. The beaters play the defensive position in Quidditch. Beaters defend with colored kick-balls known as bludgers. When a member of the opposite team is hit with a bludger, the individual must return to their side to touch the goal. The only other time the “return rule” is put into play is in the instance a player lets go of their broomstick, which must always be held between the legs. The snitch — an able runner — wears a bright yellow t-shirt. From the backside of the snitch’s shorts dangles a tube-sock with two tennis balls. When a seeker from either team captures the sock, the team is awarded thirty points and the game ends.

Middlebury comes across as the Slytherin of Quidditch when they emerge on the field, with fancy attire and Nimbus Two Thousand broomsticks in tow. At the beginning of the game, both teams kneel with broomsticks mounted, heads down and eyes closed on either side of the field. The snitch is then let loose — left to run around campus in preparation of being chased by a seeker. Then, in a dodge ball-like manner, each team runs towards the middle of the field competing to snatch up the quaffle and bludgers. With a jovial intensity, Middlebury and UVM compete back and forth on the field for points. After some time, the snitch emerges and relentlessly taunts the seekers.

In the end, UVM was victorious in the battle for the snitch, but still came up short in points. The final score came to 90-70, with the win awarded to Middlebury.

The Quidditch players effuse a spirit full of enjoyment, which enhances the experience for spectators. The light-hearted competiveness that is present on the field draws even the first-time Quidditch watchers completely into the game.

So grab a butter-beer for sale at the sidelines and enjoy the rivetingly magical world of Quidditch for yourself.