USA Wins Gold at Quidditch World Cup
The United States National Team took first place at the International Quidditch Association World Cup this past weekend in Florence, Italy. This is the third gold medal for the team, following first-place finishes at the 2012 Summer Games and 2014 Global Games.
The US team showed up ready to go on the first day of the World Cup, winning all four of their matches. The scores for their first day of games were USA vs. Ireland: 230*–0, USA vs. Italy: 160*–20, USA vs. Australia: 90*–60, and USA vs. Brazil: 250*–0 (an * indicates a Snitch catch, rewarding the team 30 points). The US managed to catch the Snitch in all four games and even came away with two shut-outs. This placed them as the number third seed when entering bracket play on Day 2 of matches.
In the round of 16, the US faced off against Austria. This was the only match the US didn’t come away with a Snitch catch, but they still pulled off a win of 180–60*. Advancing to the quarterfinals, USA once again faced off against defending world champion Australia. They came out victorious with a final score of 100*–30. The team then went on to beat the United Kingdom in the semifinals 160*–40, setting them up to face Belgium in the final match. With a speedy 38-second Snitch catch by Seeker Harry Greenhouse, they defeated Belgium with a score of 120*–70, taking back the gold medal for the third time.
US national team coordinator Amanda Dallas was proud to see the team pull off another championship victory.
Our athletes and staff poured their hearts and souls into this redemption run… The coaches and I truly could not be more proud of this squad.
The United States has taken a team to the IQA World Cup all four years since it started in 2012. They took gold at both the Summer Games in 2012 in Oxford, United Kingdom, and the Global Games in 2014 in Burnaby, Canada. In the 2016 Quidditch World Cup, they were defeated by Australia in the final, taking silver.
The IQA World Cup has come a long way since its beginning, with only five teams attending in 2012 and seven in 2014. 21 teams competed at the 2016 World Cup and an additional eight teams joined this year to bring the total to 29 competing teams. Belgium, who took home the silver, and Turkey, who came in third to take the bronze, both won their first IQA World Cup medals this year.
145 players tried out for the 2018 USA team, participating in in-person training camps and tryouts across the US. The 25 chosen players came from 13 different US quidditch teams. Six of the players are members of Texas Cavalry, the back-to-back champion from 2017’s US Quidditch Cup 10 and the community division of this year’s US Quidditch Cup 11. The University of Texas at Austin also contributed six players and 16 other US universities were represented as well. This year’s team captain was Augustine Monroe, five-time IQA/USQ Cup champion.
All photos are courtesy of Miguel Esparza/USA Quidditch: