The University of Richmond Quidditch team will compete in the seventh annual International Quidditch Association World Cup this weekend in Myrtle Beach, S.C. “We are expected to advance further than we have in the last two years,” Casey Schmidt, Quidditch team captain, said.
Richmond will send 21 players to the World Cup. Jeremy Day, Quidditch team president, said the team had a completely different feel this year. “We’ve always been a group that really gave every game their all, but the talent level and depth has really increased.”
Last year was the first year teams had to qualify for the World Cup. Day said the IQA started a regional championship tournament in each of the countries’ regions, where teams would have to qualify for one of a set number of spots.
Richmond qualified for a spot in a close match against University of Virginia, Day said. This year, the Richmond team was undefeated in the qualification round.
Schmidt said the competition was challenging at times. “We are smaller than other teams and have less of a pool of players to draw from,” she said. The team usually compensates for that with its strategy, she said.
Day said they would be playing Texas A&M University in their first game, who is a tournament favorite. “Obviously pulling that upset would be amazing.”
“I’m just looking for us to come out and get warmed up, and make sure we’re playing the system we’ve developed as best we can,” he said.
Richmond will also play matches against University of Kansas, Eastern Florida State College, and Valhalla – a community team from Canada.
Day said their game against Kansas could end up being the best one of the tournament. “They’re missing some people from their normal roster, but they’re a very experienced and talented team.”
Day said they had known about the World Cup since November, and had been working hard since then to develop strategies and improve their physicality.
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