Internationally ranked Appalachian Apparators host quidditch tournament


Kelsey Hamm

The Appalachian Apparators hosted the “It’s Pronounced App-Uh-La-Chun Quidditch Tournament” on Saturday, competing against teams from UNC Chapel Hill, Lock Haven, Virginia Tech and DCQC. 

The Apparators placed second in the tournament while Chapel Hill received first place.

“We lost 90-20 to Chapel Hill in the final game,” said team member Benjamin Strauss. “With [Chapel Hill] catching the snitch for 30 points- they used a ‘Bailer Defense,’ which prevents mid-range shots. It was a very competitive game.”

The teams competed twice, according to Strauss.

‘The first time we played them [Saturday] Chapel Hill won by much more,” he said. “You could really see our teamwork start to build as the tournament went on. Both teams are dealing with a high turnover rate, but overall it was a great tournament.”

The Apparators and Chapel Hill each ranked within the top 30 teams in the country last year, as recognized by the International Quidditch Association. The team attended the Quidditch World Cup in Rock Hill, South Carolina in April 2015.

Chaser Savannah Herber said the team currently hosts two squads, the competitive Black Squad and the Gold Squad.

“I’ve only been on the internationally ranked [Black] team for this tournament,” she said, “but it’s a intense sport and that’s what I love that about it. The competitive team requires maximum athleticism, and it is fast paced.”

Quidditch has grown in the last five years from a small following to an intensely competitive sport, according to Herber. The decision to create a gold team was decided last year when the Apparators registered to be part of the IQA.

“What I love about quidditch is that it’s such a grassroots movement,” Herber said. “Five years ago our team was just a couple of Harry Potter nerds who got together and it’s now an international athletic sport. It was interesting to be apart of that transformation.”

Senior keeper Jacob Huddleston started quidditch in his sophomore year, after a friend introduced him to the sport.

“Quidditch pulls from a lot of different sports and you don’t have to already be athletic to do it,” Huddleston said. “Yes, there is a certain level of athleticism at the higher level but we welcome newcomers easily.”

Herber said newcomers could decide which capacity they want to participate in.

“Try to get the experience out of quidditch that you want- if you want the athletic side of it, train really hard and be prepared to put a lot of dedication in,” she said. “But you can also play for fun- the best way is to talk to people on the team. The most enjoyable part about quidditch is the community you build around it.”

The Apparators host open practices on Rankin Field from 5:15-6:45 p.m. on Tuesday and Thursday, and Sunday scrimmages at 2 p.m. on Sanford Mall.


Story by: Kelsey Hamm, A&E Editor

Photos by: Alex Gates, Photo Editor