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Speech team gaining wins

Six members travel to invitational this weekend

Brent Boyer

When speaking, good timing can be essential in making sure a message is received the way its sender intended.

Or, in the case of Steamboat Springs High School’s speech team, good timing can describe the recent performances of Kelly Shaw and Stephanie Engle.

Juniors Shaw and Engle placed first in public forum debate for the second consecutive tournament last weekend in Palisade, and team co-coach Shauna Lamansky said their strong showings will help the duo as it prepares for regionals.

“Stephanie and Kelly had a great tournament,” Lamansky said of their Palisade performance. “They are peaking at the right time as we’re getting ready to head to the playoffs. It definitely gives them the confidence to do well at other tournaments.”

The Shaw-Engle team was the only undefeated duo after three rounds of public forum debate at the Palisade Invitational. They received a bye and went on to win.

Their showing was the highlight of a successful tournament for the team, which finished sixth out of 12 schools despite having only nine members. The five teams that placed higher all had 20 or more competitors.

“For our size, we did really well,” Lamansky said.

Sophomore Lydia Kindred and freshman Catherine Mann made it to the finals in duo interpretation for the first time this season and finished in fourth place. Junior Amanda Toy placed second in the national extemporaneous speaking event.

Sophomore Suzie Ford finished seventh in humor, and Engle placed seventh in drama. Shaw placed eighth in national extemporaneous speaking.

Only six team members will travel to the St. Vrain District Invitational this weekend, the last tournament before the school hosts a National Forensics League Student Congress qualifying tournament.

The tournament, to be held Jan. 30 and 31, will feature about 100 competitors from 15 schools. The students will vie for five spots in the national finals.

Student Congress is a unique event in that the competitors form a mock Congress of “Senates” and “Houses of Representatives.”

During preliminary rounds, each House and Senate elects a presiding officer who serves as the majority leader for that chamber. The Student Congress features a lot of campaigning and politicking as teams compete to have the legislation they authored placed at the top of the discussion docket.

Competitors are judged by their ability to speak and effectively argue legislation, as well as how active they are in parliamentary procedures.

Two Steamboat students earned spots in nationals during last year’s Student Congress.

Lamansky said the team needs more volunteer judges, particularly for the Friday afternoon portion of the event. Lamansky and her husband, co-coach Marty Lamansky, will conduct individual trainings for community members interested in volunteering. Call Marty Lamansky at 871-3660.

— To reach Brent Boyer call 871-4234

or e-mail bboyer@steamboatpilot.com


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