Tuesday, February 3, 2015

80 in 80: UMD

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 Bryan Barrows, captain of Maryland Quidditch (UMD).

Photo by: Jodie Greenhouse

Quidditch Post: Last year, UMD fell in the Sweet 16 to eventual champions University of Texas at Austin on a snitch catch. What are your goals for this year?
Bryan: We have the same goal that we have every year, every tournament, and every game: to win.

QP: What will it take for UMD to win World Cup?
Bryan: It's not going to be easy, that's for sure. No matter what happens in the tournament, we will have to beat a number of quality teams in order to win. That means that we will have to be at our best for every single game.

QP: Is there a particular team that you're looking forward to playing?
Bryan: I wouldn't say there is one particular team, but we hope to get the opportunity to play teams that we never get a chance to. Due to the obvious travel restraints for tournaments, we usually play the same teams over and over. It would be interesting to play other teams to see the difference in play styles.

QP: How is UMD preparing for World Cup?
Bryan: Practicing.

QP: Do you have any plans for events in the spring?
Bryan: We are in the process of planning a tournament with George Mason University that will have some of the best teams from the Mid-Atlantic, Northeast, and Midwest. We are also planning on going to the University of Virginia for a tournament in March.

QP: UMD was much heralded going into the season and has faced a lot of tough competition. What impact do you think playing teams like the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Tufts University Tufflepuffs, and New York University Nundu has had?
Bryan: Playing teams of their caliber has given us a glimpse of what we will be facing at World Cup and the work that we need to do to beat teams at that level.

QP: Can you be more specific about what you need to do to beat the top teams?
Bryan: Every team is different. We will practice as hard as we can so that we will be as prepared as possible when we go up against those tougher teams.

QP: Does the newly announced Swiss-style have any impact on your preparations?
Bryan: No, it doesn’t.

QP: Are there particular players who will need to step up for UMD to succeed at World Cup?
Bryan: No one in particular. Obviously, everyone will have to play their best for us to go far in the tournament.

QP: Are there any players who maybe don't get the attention they deserve from the quidditch media?
Bryan: There is no player on our team who doesn't deserve media attention. Some players, such as Eric King and Jeremy Dehn, are finally getting the recognition they deserve, and I'm sure people will be talking about some of our younger players after this semester.

QP: Who are some of the younger players that you think will begin to stand out?
Bryan: Freshmen Garrett Sadtler and Brenden Hutton have both made multiple appearances this past fall and have shown real promise.

QP: What positions do they play?
Bryan: Garrett is a chaser, and Brenden is a keeper.

QP: Is there anything about their style of play that you think will allow them to emerge?
Bryan: Both of them grasped the game very quickly. Garrett played in his first tournament after only three practices. Brenden's height and wingspan allow him to reach and save shots that many people wouldn't have a chance on.

QP: How would you generally describe Maryland's style of play?
Bryan: What I like about our team is that we can change the style of play by switching lines. We have a line of Harry Greenhouse and King that can hit hard and fast break, and then we can switch it up and put in Steve Sleasman and Matt Angelico who will throw four passes and score before the defense realizes what’s happened.

QP: Can Maryland win World Cup?
Bryan: Yes.

QP: Players like yourself, Harry Greenhouse, and Erin Mallory have been widely acclaimed and have meant a lot to the program over the past four years. Can you talk about what you guys bring to the team both on and off the pitch?
Bryan: Every player on our team brings a lot both on and off the pitch. The large variety of players both in play style and personality is really great. Everyone on the team is friendly, and that makes it a lot easier to coach.

QP: Can you talk a bit about what it was like to win the Mid-Atlantic in such dramatic fashion?
Bryan: While exciting to win that way, we would've much rather played well and won without all the drama.

QP: Thanks for your time, Bryan.
Bryan: Thank you.

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