With the start of November comes that time of the year when everyone realizes they probably should have botted more, captains start to get a little crazier, and there is a general excitement amongst quidditch fans. Quidditch season has certainly arrived and brought with it several topics that I wanted to discuss. Because I was unable to decide which one I wanted to focus on, I decided to just include them all!
First, there is a rule change for the 2013-2014 quidditch season. Teams are now limited to a 250 point differential. While I understand the reasoning behind this rule and why it was created, I am not a big fan of it. I have always thought that a rule of this kind seems to punish those teams who have the ability to score more. I honestly think that it is going to turn some games into a race this year (29 minutes is the time to beat, for any of you wondering) and really not improve the situation. Is it really that much better to know that the other team is racing to get 25 goals as quickly as it can against you? Does having the game stopped basically because your team is not good enough to keep up really feel better than sticking out the entire game and playing ‘til the end?
My second point of discussion is none other than Scarlet Leslie. Scarlet has played two games as our seeker this year. Both of those games have sadly not resulted in a catch for her, but what they have done is show just how talented a seeker she is. In both matches, Scarlet lost by mere moves. Had something as small as a bludger or wronski feint changed earlier in the game, she would have been coming away with the snitch.
While those involved in the MVP decision decided in both games that the opposing team’s seeker was deserving of the award, I feel like Scarlet is just as deserving of recognition. In our game against GQT in particular, Scarlet solved the puzzle first, but because of an unfortunately-timed break, she missed catching the snitch by one move. Despite not catching the snitch that game, she helped the team out in a major way: she gave us the time we needed.
A few years ago, RQT lost its two main seekers and went through a phase where it did not have a consistent, reliable seeker to play each game. Then came Scarlet. As a former captain, I cannot stress how much easier it makes your job knowing that you have a smart seeker who will do everything possible to not only catch the snitch, but to give the quaffle side the time it needs either to reach the points difference or to get snitch safe. I think I can safely speak for the rest of RQT when I say that we never have to worry about snitch, because we have the utmost faith in Scarlet and her crazy logic abilities. It takes a lot more attributes than catches to make a good seeker, all of which are embodied by Scarlet.
In more Scarlet Leslie news, Scarlet was recently appointed to Quidditch Board along with Cody Lewis of Slytherin. The Quidditch Board and I have not always had the best relationship, especially in the past year, for various reasons, but mainly because I felt that the attitudes of some were not always equal towards certain teams. I am not saying they made biased calls or anything of that sort, but outside of games, there were instances when it was very obvious just how they felt about both RQT and SQT. Therefore, I am beyond happy to see two fresh faces joining them who will hopefully help to balance this and make every team equally represented when it comes to major quidditch decisions.
Finally, I must address the elephant in the room. On November 16, 2013, RQT’s winning streak came to an end. Seeing “defeats Ravenclaw” at the end of the game was something that no current member of RQT had even witnessed before. We had known going into the game that Slytherin was going to be a formidable opponent, easily the toughest RQT had faced in years, but we were still hoping to pull out the win.
The game itself was incredible. Cody Lewis versus Edmund Smethwyck has to be one of the greatest match ups in HOL quidditch. Both of them were on point, making it a constant battle of quaffle. With neither team able to pull away enough to get snitch-safe, it quickly became apparent that the game was going to come down to the seekers. Ashley Margaret and Scarlet played what seemed to be a perfect example of a snitch match. Ashley managed to catch the snitch and end the game with Slytherin ahead.
I think a lot of people expected RQT to react badly to losing. While it was definitely hard to lose, we lost in the fashion we wanted to. We always knew that our winning streak would have to come to an end at one point or another. There have been a few close calls in past years, yes, but there has never been a team that was deserving of a win against RQT until this year. If we were going to lose, we wanted to lose to a team that had worked hard and was prepared to fight to take that win from us, not just a team that got lucky when we were having an off day. So my biggest congratulations go out to SQT, and I greatly look forward to our spring rematch!