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PHS Speech & Debate Team, Outstanding Win

March 7, 2011

03/08/11 Even the cold, wet rain at 5:30 a.m. on Saturday morning couldn’t dampen the spirits of the Plymouth High School Speech and Debate Team members as they headed to Concord High School in Elkhart to compete in the IHSFA (Indiana High School Forensic Association) sectional tournament. Those placing at the sectional level now advance to the state tournament on March 26.

Their enthusiasm was even greater after an over 12 hour day of competition as they headed back to Plymouth with an outstanding win.

Head coach David McKenzie said, “The 2011 team added another Sectional Championship to the legacy of dominance of North-Central Indiana by using team depth and balance to overcome the individual successes of performers from other Sectional foes.”

Competitors win points for their team by advancing to and placing in semi-final and final rounds. Plymouth was able to score an outstanding 223 points over the next highest scoring team, Concord, with 75 points. Below are the team standings and PHS team member’s individual finishes.

1. Plymouth (223)
2. Concord (75)
3. Canterbury (70)
4. Elkhart Central (57)
5. Columbia City (27)
6. Bethany Christian (12)
7. Westview (6)


Memorized Duo (a sweep)
Sean Hatfield & Jason Pickell – Champions
Christy Chipman & Kyle Barry – second
Ashton Morrow & Christina Krozel – third

Scripted Duo (a sweep)
Sarah Gouker & Olivia Hilliard – Champions
Austin Craft & Stephanie Gorka – second
Jordin Cook & Dalton Van Dusen -third

USA Extemp (a sweep)
Bryt Hiatt – Champion (straight 1s from all 9 judges)
Michaila Nate – second
Kelsey Shaffer – third

Michaila Nate – Champion
Bryt Hiatt – third
Kelsey Shaffer – fourth
Patrick Felke – fifth

Original Performance
Jessica Cleveland – Champion
Courtney Harris & Olivia Houin – second
Hayden Wolfe & Luke Bumpus – fifth

International Extemp
Patrick Felke – Champion
Rebecca Brumbaugh – third
Ellen Smith – fifth

Pauline Dagaas – Champion
Austin Craft – second

Deven Berger – Champion
Gage Pynaert – fourth
Nelson Wagner – fifth

Sam Compton – second (Judges’ Preference loss)
Sean Hatfield – third
Kate Peters – eighth (1st alternate)

Emily Walden – second (Judges’ Preference loss)
Sarah Gouker – third
Olivia Hilliard – second
Stephanie Gorka – third

Emily Walden – second
Michael Gray – fourth

April Bowen – second

Original Oratory
Pauline Dagaas – third
Rebecca Brumbaugh –fourth

McKenzie also contributed the success of the team’s win to the coaches  of the team and the parents who volunteered their time throughout the year and at the tournament. But this year’s win did not keep McKenzie from preparing for the years to come. Speaking to other the team members who made the trip with the team, but could not compete on Saturday due to restrictions in the number of entries, McKenzie said, “Look at how many seniors we have on the team this year. As they graduate, it will be your turn to step up. You are the future.”

Carol Anders Correspondent