Asking the Quidditch Captains

                               With ~Alexandria Chavez 

With it nearing the end of the school year I felt it’s about time to touch base with Quidditch and their team Captain. So I took the liberty to do so and they were all great to interview getting the feel from each team captain and their own perspective on their own teams, here’s how the interview went.

1) In your opinion how do you think quidditch has been for you guys during this school year?

Eagles Captain-Lucian Valerian: We had a bit of a rocky start; I was given the title of captain rather soon after joining the team, so our team as a whole had quite the initial learning curve. However, we have quickly gained traction, learning to be more flexible and establishing a practice schedule that works for everyone. Our goal as a team is to take what have previously been obstacles and use those experiences as learning opportunities, growing stronger with each passing trial.

Lions Co-Captain-Chloe Lovegood: First off, I would like to say thank you for offering to interview me, it's an honour to represent the Gryffindor Quidditch Team. 
As a team, my lions are excelling on the pitch throughout the season. I have, not once, doubted the capability of each and every single member I fly by. We have had our downfalls with game matches, the weather being against us- causing cancellations and strange movings in our playing areas. However, without this in mind, the season has gone in our favour. Points racking up on our side of the leader board, we are well on the way to possibly winning this season. 

I think I can speak for the entirety of my team when I say that we stand by the best of our abilities as a proud and closely knit team. Outside of team hours, we all find each other's company readily available in owls. Even with our busy school days and avid house-point climbers we still manage to meet three times a week for a training session. They happen to be my favorite part of Quidditch- spending time having a laugh and encouraging each other through whatever weather! 

Snakes Co-Captain- Alfie Pravas: We've had a bit of change up in leadership and different team members coming and going, but I think definitely within the last couple of weeks we've been doing well and practicing hard. I'm super proud of everyone for all the effort put in!

Badgers Captain-Carina Johnson: Well it has been not an easy year for us, we have won a couple and lost a couple, however it was only our first year, so I very proud of our team for being able to pull through the year. 

2) You may have had some gains and/or loses with quidditch matches, does your team learn from these with determination to try harder and harder each match?

Eagles Captain-Lucian Valerian: Absolutely. Ravenclaw is a fiercely competitive House, and our Quidditch team is no exception. Our members push themselves to be their very best, and winning is incentive enough. We lost our first match to Gryffindor rather narrowly, but our last match against Hufflepuff was spectacular. We hope to continue going in that direction and get a victory against Slytherin this upcoming Saturday.

Lions Co-Captain-Chloe Lovegood: Our team has been to Pandora's Box and back this season! Not only have we had many problems with the weather and ref cancellations, we have also had a terrible season for injury- the whole team has never been able to play together in a match due to being in and out of the Hospital Wing! We take pride in our attendance to matches, but there is often moments we cannot even imagine happening. 

I am no better! The first game of the season, a win for us, was missed by yours truly due to a nasty head injury in an earlier practice. Being beater isn't all daisies and sunshine. However, with this said, everything this season has taught us to become greater and greater over time. This event has taught us many things over the last weeks. With each postponed or moved match we become more resilient and patient. And, with that in mind, with each win we show more sportsmanship and moral. It's also taught me how to take a good injury without being too beaten down about it! 

Snakes Co-Captain- Alfie Pravas: Our team always learns from our games, whether a win or a loss. It definitely motivates us to keep going and show off everything us snakes can do!

Badgers Captain-Carina Johnson: It is not the wins or loses that matter, all that matters is looking at the game you have played, how well you have done, and what you can take away to improve from that game to be better for the next.

3) Do you all come up formulating a plan for upcoming games during practice?

Eagles Captain-Lucian Valerian: While I prepare the game plan for matches myself, the overall preparation for matches is largely a group effort. I lead formal practices for our team, but our members have been known to get together fairly regularly outside of that time to get some extra practice time in.

Lions Co-Captain-Chloe Lovegood: We always have a big day the day before the match, with a training session on the Friday going over questions from chaser to beater to seeker. On the Saturday or Sunday of the game we will train at least half an hour before hand. Many of the team will train even two hours before hand and even give themselves some extra studying without a trainer to take the practice. It's amazing commitment from every single member of our beautiful and talented team. I have never seen a group of fliers like them! 

In terms of plans we have, we like to keep this secret- the best things always come as surprises, wouldn't you say? *wink* However, I will say that we are kept in good hands without head of house Ivy Gray and well renowned captain, second year student Kathleen. She's shown her skill as an incredibly seeker many times. We will often discuss with the entire team over the week for our practice sessions and our lineup. Training at least three times a week is important to us, as it makes sure everyone can make at least one of the days we chose!

Snakes Co-Captain- Alfie Pravas: Of course! We always have plans. We practice daily in order to be prepared.

Badgers Captain-Carina Johnson: Well I can't reveal too much about our practices now can I? ;) Just kidding, we are going to try and keep consistent practices as much as we can. It is going to be hard with different schedules but we can do it, and we might do a couple a week at different times so hopefully everyone can come to at least one practice a week. As for how we will be practicing, well the details shall remain a secret ;) but we do study the questions, and look at some links that could help us to prepare for our games.

4) Would you say your team and giving chance to recruit new students for your team is a great experience for them?

Eagles Captain-Lucian Valerian: Quidditch is one of the most unifying activities within our illustrious school. Our members develop social skills, keep physically active, and stay mentally sharp by playing, all of which are extremely rewarding on their own. Even beyond that, Quidditch matches get a large number of students out on to the field to support their House and their classmates. The camaraderie and competition are healthy components that are essential parts of why Quidditch is so loved by the student body and faculty alike.

Lions Co-Captain-Chloe Lovegood: We always enjoy the experiences of having new members, and the thrill of choosing who joins the team is a scary and exciting process. We've had different varying users join our team from completely new to site to old timers- it allows for a good mix of people. You also learn a lot from the team. Being a new student and on the team really helps you learn from the old timers and form a friendship group like no other- we are a very closely knit team in some senses, off the pitch and on it. 

We offer this experience to anyone who tries out for the team, whether they stay or not. We are a friendly bunch of people, something which is considered when we chose who is put on the team. Being a Quidditch player is a respected offer! 

Snakes Co-Captain- Alfie Pravas: I think it’s a great experience for everyone! Sometimes people turn away because they think they'll only be on reserves, but actually everyone gets to play at some point because of scheduling and everything. Plus, everyone practices together, which really helps strengthen the team.

Badgers Captain-Carina Johnson: Hufflepuff will always be looking for new recruits, as not everyone will always be able to make every game. It is always good to have reserve members and it also gives them a chance to learn a little bit about the game, and study the questions so they should be ready for the most part for their first game that they will play in. I want all of my teammates to have a good time playing quidditch, enjoy it and have a great experience while playing.

5) Every team has a few strengths and weaknesses, what do you think is your teams’ strengths/ weaknesses?

Eagles Captain-Lucian Valerian: Some of our strengths would be our variety of skills (we all have unique qualities that we bring to t
the table which helps us to be more evenly balanced as a team), our tenacity, and our House traits of intelligence and wit of course. Among our few weaknesses are our inconsistent numbers (we've struggled to grow a stable and full team) and our scheduling conflicts when they arise.

Lions Co-Captain-Chloe Lovegood: Our strength is definitely in our resilience. We also have some excellently fast players! I am always at awe by them all, and always find their sportsmanship to be very very humbling. Yes, we come to win, but the way they always thank the team, the judge and everyone around them brings a smile to my face. I couldn't be happier with the team- they are honestly one of the prides of my life! (No lion pun intended) 

In terms of other strengths, I would say we have a great and closely knit team. It's one of the things which gets us through the season and makes us so easy to work with. 

I don't think we have many weaknesses other than the injuries we have had this season, causing our team to always be missing members when it comes to game time!

Snakes Co-Captain- Alfie Pravas: I don't want to give anything away that the other teams could use against us, but I will say that we are a very strong and cohesive team, but sometimes the amount of external experiences, while wonderful that our team is involved in so much, can mean that we won’t always have a full team at practices.

Badgers Captain-Carina Johnson: Well I have not been captain for long, and I have just been able to get more involved in quidditch just this last week and a half do to my schedule not really being very flexible before. So I have not had much of a chance to see. I can say one strength in our team was when we needed people this last game, even though some people were really nervous, they stepped up and were willing to do their best and try. I am so proud of our team, everyone was so encouraging, and they all did so well. I have yet to see our teams’ weakness, but I know we can overcome anything if we put our minds to it.

6) What is your teams’ greatest character, the fact they all show and prove team effort? 

Eagles Captain-Lucian Valerian: The best quality our team has to offer is by far the efficacy with which our members have coordinated with each other since day one. There's always a period of acclimation when new teammates are forced to adjust to working alongside one another, but ours has seemed remarkably short. This has been a real aid to the team, as we have been able to move on to longer practices sooner than most and our members have quickly grown accustomed to helping each other improve. I love that I can trust my members to lead a tryout when I have a last minute conflict. That kind of trust and responsibility doesn't often come so easily to a team so newly forged, but there is no doubt in my mind that every member of my team is fully capable and incredibly skilled.

Lions Co-Captain-Chloe Lovegood: Our teams greatest virtue has to be the positive sportsmanship of my team!

Snakes Co-Captain- Alfie Pravas: I think our teams’ greatest character comes from how close we are and our ability to joke around even in high-stress situations. We all have nicknames for each other and aren’t afraid to laugh at ourselves when we make mistakes. It makes for a really fun practice and a really cohesive group in general.

Badgers Captain-Carina Johnson: The fact, yes that they try their best and I was so proud of our team this past week. Even though we didn't win, and the dice most certainly was not in our favor ;), It was my first game I played, and on my first game, and as captain we had a full team with some other new people who stepped up for the first time and did an amazing job as well. I will say in our practice before the game, we had a sort of relaxing practice allowing for a little bit of chit chat to help everyone not worry, and I think it worked, I enjoyed it at least, and it also left for a little team bonding.

7) What will you say is a confidence builder during practices and quidditch matches?

Eagles Captain-Lucian Valerian: We have a very good-spirited team, and I'd say the outpouring of encouragement and support they give each other throughout practices and matches is the most notable confidence builder. I believe every one of us knows we are fully backed by our teammates at all times, and that is so vital to a healthy mentality while playing.

Lions Co-Captain-Chloe Lovegood: During practices, the confidence builder for everyone is that at least once every wins a round. We are a very evenly skilled team and carry the weight and support with each other. During quidditch matches, we are ALWAYS there to support each other. After the game, we always send each other messages to allow for a level of support that you would receive in any team environment. 

It's something we pride ourselves on as a team, and something we will never have 

Snakes Co-Captain- Alfie Pravas: Definitely how fast some of our players are! We’ve been practicing for a long time, and some of our players are really on top of things! Its both good to know that we’re prepared, but it also helps motivate other players to get on their best game. It’s a bit of healthy competition.

Badgers Captain-Carina Johnson: Just being there for you to encourage you no matter what you do, if you get the question right or wrong. To encourage your teammates to study hard and to help them in whatever way they may need help. That is what a team is for, and your teammates should be there for you, and have your back no matter what.

8)Would you change anything for practice or matches for next school year?

Eagles Captain-Lucian Valerian: I don't want a single person to have to choose to not play Quidditch due to availability. Their schedule not aligning to mine shouldn't be enough of a reason for them to not qualify for the team. As such, I hope to take on a Co-Captain to lead alternate practices at a different time so that members have twice the opportunity to come practice. My goal is for the only limitation on whether a student makes the team to be their ability to come to matches and their skill. Hopefully that will bring Ravenclaw a whole host of new recruits!

Thank you so much for the interview opportunity, and I hope you'll support the team proudly at our next match!

Lions Co-Captain-Chloe Lovegood: Hm... I don't believe I would! I love the team and the practice just how it is.

Snakes Co-Captain- Alfie Pravas: If I would change anything, it would be the notion that being a reserve player is somehow lesser. All our snek players are super important, no matter their position on the team! I’m hoping anyone interested in joining our team will know that, and will think of joining our little family.

Badgers Captain-Carina Johnson: Well for practices the only thing that would change really would possibly be the time and days we do it, because everyone has schedules to work around and I want to take everyones schedules into consideration so I can hopefully make it easier on everyone. For matches, everything will also stay the same for our team, unless we get new players, the only thing that could change our lineup. But we have yet to see, and we still have a little bit of time left. ;)

This all sounds good to me good job and good luck for those who still have games!! You're all great and this was fun!