Speech and Debate team ends first semester victoriously

Leilah Taylor, Staff

Friday and Saturday, December 14-15, Speech and Debate traveled to Oak Grove High School in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, to compete. Members of the team placed and became finalists. 

Mia Robertson and Aaron Wan won Varsity Public Forum debate, Andrew Yu and Lyem Ningthou won Novice Public Forum debate, April Guo-Yue and Amy Zhang were semi-finalists in Lincoln Douglas debate, Lizzie Tomlin and Michael Lu were quarter finalist in Public Forum, Hannah Daniels was a quarter finalist in Varsity Lincoln Douglas debate, and lastly, Alan Meng was a quarter finalist in Lincoln Douglas in debate. 

Amy Zhang placed third in Novice Extemporaneous speaking, Sam Harvey placed fourth in Informative speaking, Guo-Yue, Yu, and Ningthou were semi-finalists in Novice Extemporaneous speaking, Poetry Interpretation, and Original Oratory, Lu was also a semi-finalist in Extemporaneous speaking. 

“My Public Forum partner and I spent long hours researching and writing cases and rebuttals for the tournament. I also had to prepare for my individual events by practicing my speeches and making sure that I cognizant of current events,” Robertson said. 

Robertson was a semi-finalist in Varsity Extemporaneous speaking, Poetry Interpretation, and Original Oratory. 

“My favorite events are debate and impromptu. I like debate because of the clash and unexpected arguments at every tournament,” said Tomlin. 

Robertson said that attending practices is vital for the team to improve and be successful. She also says that attending team meetings are also very important. 

The National Speech and Debate Association comes up with topics nationwide to debate about. Speech lengths depend on what events competitors are in. In Speech events a standard speech is ten minutes long while in debate, they do not get to choose the topic they argue. 

Tomlin has been a part of team for three year and plans continue throughout her senior year. Robertson has also been a part of the team two years now. 

The SHS Debaters have placed in almost every invent in speech and debate. 

“While keeping myself emerged in what’s going on in the world and in politics as well as practicing at home for my speaking events and take the ballots back that we get from the judges and take their critiques and apply them for the next tournament,” said Tomlin. 

Although the debaters have had a successful first semester there is always room for more improvement. 

Members of the Starkville High School debate team have finished this semester very accomplished. The next debate will be in January.