03/30/11 Thirty five Plymouth High School Speech Team members competed at the IHSFA State tournament in Fishers on March 26. To qualify, each entry had to place in the top seven in their event at the district level.
The team placed second falling only one point with 89 points behind Munster with 90 points. Competitors earn points for the team by advancing to semi-final and final rounds after three preliminary rounds of competition. .
Several of the students qualified in more than one event.
PHS speech teams have won the state title for 12 out of the last 14 years. They also placed second in 2005.
The program celebrated its 30th anniversary last year. The first competitive speech team at PHS was started in 1979 by Dan Tyree who is now the superintendent for Plymouth Schools. Tyree continued as the head coach through the 1999-2000 school year.
Current Head Coach David McKenzie took over the program in the 2000-2001 school year.
Speaking on the accomplishment of this year’s team, McKenzie said, “While I hate finishing second to anyone, it’s the happiest second place I’ve ever had considering where this team started and the quality and depth of the Munster team this year.” He continued. “Our team rose to the challenge and had an outstanding day.”
Of the 35 competitors qualifying for the state contest, all were in the top 50 competitors in the state. Twenty-five advanced to the semi-finals placing them in the top 18 and 13 competed in the final rounds placing them in the top six in the state.
Placing for the Plymouth team were the following:
Impromptu: Bryt Hiatt, first; Michaila Nate, third; Patrick Felke, sixth.
Humor: Sam Compton, third.
International Extemporaneous Speaking: Patrick Felke, third.
Declamation: Pauline DaGaas, second; Austin Craft, third.
Discussion: Nelson Wagner, third; Deven Berger, fourth.
Drama: Emily Walden, sixth.
Memorized Duo: Jason Pickell/Sean Hatfield, sixth.
United States Extemporaneous Speaking: Bryt Hiatt, first; Kelsey Shaffer, second.
Those advancing to the semi-finals and narrowly missing advancing to finals included:
Poetry: Emily Walden
Prose: Stephanie Gorka
Scripted Duo: Olivia Hilliard/Sarah Gourka
Original Oratory: Pauline DaGaas
Impromptu: Kelsey Shaffer
Original Performance: Courtney Harris and Olivia Houin.
United States Extemporaneous Speaking: Michaila Nate
Discussion: Gage Pynaert
International Extemporaneous Speaking: Ellen Smith, Rebecca Brumbaugh
Other team members competing included:
Memorized Duo: Christy Chipman/Kyle Berry; Ashton Morrow/Christina Krozel; Austin Craft/Stephanie Gorka; Jordin Cook/Dalton VanDusen
Original Performance: Jessica Cleveland, Hayden Wolfe/Luke Bumpus
Prose: Olivia Hilliard; Stephanie Gorka
Poetry: Michael Gray
Broadcasting: April Bowen
Carol Anders Correspondent