Tuesday, March 17, 2015

80 in 80: The Southern Storm

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 Joey Galtelli, coach and captain of the Southern Storm.

Photo by Hanna Reese
Quidditch Post: The Southern Storm will be the de facto home team of World Cup 8. What impact do you think that will have?
Joey: Being the home team is really exciting for us; it was one of the driving factors for us to push so hard to earn a bid. I don't think it will affect our gameplay at World Cup unless we have a local crowd cheering us on. We knew we had to represent South Carolina at the regional championship this weekend, and we will definitely do the same at World Cup.

QP: This is the team's first season. What does that mean to the group?
Joey: More than half of our team has never played in a World Cup, and almost half of our roster is made up of people who started playing this year. Just like any community team, it was difficult at first to find our synergy as a whole, especially because we are made up of three different conference teams. We had to turn three teams that are comfortable with each other into one competitive team. But we developed our strategy from the nine games that we played prior to the regional championship.

QP: Who are some of the team's key players?
Joey: I feel like all of our players are essential to our gameplay, but if I had to pick some it would be by position.

Ray Taylor and Tyler Hemerly, our starting beaters, are a dynamic duo. Tanner Morris is probably our best "clutch" player because he can make insane beats when needed but can switch to chaser to give some aggression to our lineup. Andrew Latham has done a great job as my keeper sub, blocking a lot of long shots and scoring a couple of his own from midfield. Jalann Little is a newcomer who has picked up the sport swiftly, scoring a lot of goals for us. For our females, every one of them brings something unique to the table. Ashley Michels, Zoe Walsh, and Maria Clarken are always there for the passes, and Lucy Snell is a powerhouse disguised in 100 pounds.

We don't really have first strings or second picks on our team; we value everyone just as good as the next and use everyone's strengths in a way to gain an advantage.

QP: Would you say the team has a particular style of play?
Joey: We have done really well with a double male beater and two female chaser lineup. Overall, our team is generally smaller than most teams, so we use our beaters to defend and try to outspeed our opponents. I would say we are a tempo teamwe like to bring the game to our pace and adjust what we need to mid-game depending on our opponents strategy. This makes a lot of our games go into snitch range, like approximately 70 percent of our regional championship games.

QP: What are your goals for World Cup?
Joey: Our goal for World Cup is to try to fight until the end but to be as clean as we can. Win or lose, the other captains and myself try to teach our team to play fairly and respectfully. We want our opponents to enjoy playing against us, but we will make them fight for it.

QP: Are there particular opponents you hope to face?
Joey: As much as we love our region and the teams from North Carolina, I hope we don't have to face any of them at World Cup. We just want to play some new teams from different regions and show them that South Carolina is starting to make waves.

QP: South Carolina had all three of its teams qualify. Is this a turning point for the state?
Joey: I believe it is. Going into the regional championship, a lot of our fellow South Region teams underestimated us. Most of this is from the gap between all of the teams, but I think we proved that we are becoming stronger as a state. We took every game against a Florida team to snitch range, College of Charleston Quidditch surprised everyone by making it to the finals, and the University of South Carolina showed that it isn't the “team that shouldn't be going to World Cup VII” team anymore. I wouldn't say we are taking over the South Region, but we definitely showed that we shouldn't be overlooked.

QP: Where did the name Southern Storm come from?
Joey: We actually had a bunch of names we voted on before we came to “the Southern Storm.” We wanted a name that represented South Carolina and was fierce. The name that actually won the vote was “the Crescent Storm,” but we decided to go with “the Southern Storm” for the alliteration. Also, we couldn't stop making jokes about crescent rolls.

QP: Thanks for your time, Joey, we appreciate it.

Joey: Thank you for the interview! Glad I could help.

No comments:

Post a Comment