Amherst hosted Middlebury College in Quidditch

On Friday, Amherst College took its first step into a new world of sports — one that had everything *but* flying brooms. Amherst hosted Middlebury College in an earthbound version of Quidditch, the sport made famous by the wizards in the Harry Potter books and movies.

A fair-sized crowd came out on a raw, rainy morning at the college quad to support the two teams as they played a modified Muggle version of the game. Amherst, in purple and white capes, and Middlebury, wearing dark blue, played the game carrying broomsticks between their legs to remain true to the series.

Quidditch, which contains elements of dodgeball, soccer, and basketball is played with four balls, with two of these used for scoring and the other two to be avoided. The goal is to score points by throwing the ball, called the Quaffle, through one of the opponents three goal hoops, all while dodging balls and running with broomsticks.

The players who were drenched in rain, and some soaked in mud, played to a well received gathering, amidst the sounds of a joking announcer.

Middlebury, which may be home to the nation’s first college Quidditch team, held Quidditch World Cup festivals in 2006 and 2007.

With a little more experience, they won the match — but cast a spell on everyone who played and watched.