The Red Mountain High School Speech and Debate team is preparing for the tough competitions they have coming up this 2016-17 school year. Their first tournament took place at McClintock High School in Tempe Oct. 21 and 22. Sophomores Elijah Tribby and D’Angelo Perez along with freshman Maya Chatham were all given a spot in the final rounds, advancing to the semifinals by winning two out of three of their debates.
Even with all the graduating seniors last year and the addition of new members, the changes have not stopped the Speech and Debate team from advancing.
“Our current team is doing very well in their debate competitions,” Speech and Debate vice president Tribby said. “Especially our team’s Lincoln Douglas debaters are having great success.”
Although the team is mostly novices, all who competed at the McClintock tournament could win at least one of their first debates, some debaters competed against experienced competitors, allowing them to gain more knowledge on the topic.
“We are having sessions in which we teach debaters how to write cases, take notes and debate well,” treasurer Perez said. “Additionally, we have mock debates every so often that help us get used to debating.”
Members of speech and debate are rigorously preparing for upcoming tournaments around Arizona. The speech participants are preparing and practicing their speeches to make them as entertaining as they can, while debate is researching their evidence and writing their cases.
“We will continue to try and improve for the future,” Perez said. “By working hard with each and every debater and striving to improve their debating and speaking skills, we will be successful.”
The teams will compete at Arizona State University Jan. 5–7 and will go to San Francisco to compete at the University of California Berkeley Tournament Feb. 17–20.
For more information about Speech and Debate, contact Denise Harper at firstname.lastname@example.org.
– Porter Blackhurst is a sophomore at Red Mountain High School.