Friday, February 27, 2015

80 in 80: Austin Quidditch

As part of our efforts to preview all 80 teams competing in USQ World Cup 8, the Quidditch Post is chatting with representatives from each team. Today we spoke with Taylor Risinger, coach and captain of Austin Quidditch (AQ).
Photo Courtesy of Austin Quidditch

QP: After a successful run in the Southwest's mid tier last season, AQ has seemingly dropped off this year. To what do you attribute the team's seeming struggles?
Taylor: This has been a rebuilding year for AQ. After losing 75 percent of our veterans to graduation or other obligations, we have an almost completely new squad. This wouldn't be that bad if we were in another region, but being in the Southwest, the competition is always extremely difficult at any tier. A lot of the other teams are veteran squads. Experience isn't everything, but it sure does help.

QP: Who have been some of the players that have stepped up?
Taylor: Zachary Pickett and Leah Lawson at beater. Zach has carried the entire team on his back in a couple of our games. Erin McBride and Kendall Meyertons at female chaser have turned into quite the scoring machines. I myself have had to step up and play every position at some point depending on what my team has needed. Alex Blanke at keeper has really brought his A-game on offense.

QP: What are the team's goals for World Cup?
Taylor: Our goal is to win, to win on our terms.

QP: What do you mean by that?
Taylor: I mean that we want to be the ones in control of the game. I don't want to have to make a comeback in a game; I want to take control at the beginning and keep it.

QP: What will you need to do to achieve that?
Taylor: Outwork the other team. I can be across from someone who is more skilled than me, but you can be sure I am going to outwork him.

QP: Would you say AQ has a particular style of play?
Taylor: Scrappy for sure; we always have been. We may not be the most athletic of the bunch, but we will fight to the end.

QP: What effect does it have to be associated with the two-time defending champions?
Taylor: Inspiration more than anything. We look up to Texas Quidditch (Varsity), and it drives us to play like them, to fight like they do. Also, having them cheer us on in our games gets the team really hyped.

QP: How are you preparing for World Cup?
Taylor: The same as any other team: practice, practice, practice.

QP: Is there any team in particular you'd like to face?
Taylor: It doesn't matter who is across the pitch from us. We're gonna play our game.

QP: Thanks; we appreciate your time.
Taylor: No problem.

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