Senior speech and debate students compete at state


Callia Tellez (left) poses with her third place plaque with head coach Matt Deters (right). The 2015- 2016 school year is Deters’ first year as head coach. Deters said, “When I took over this year, it was an easy transition because we have so many experienced, great people working with the students that we still have an outstanding program.” Photo Contributed By Callia Tellez

On Saturday, March 5 the Speech and Debate team competed at state. Of the students that started the season, 21 made it to the state level competition. Only one student placed and two made it to the quarterfinals.

Senior Callia Tellez placed third in Dramatic Interpretation. Seniors Lauren Pepper and Senior Haley Williams made it to the quarterfinals for Policy Debate.

“[It was] humbling to see so many talented kids and such a rush to perform at a high state tournament,” Tellez said.

Tellez has been on the team for all four years. Tellez competes in Dramatic Interpretation which is where a student performs a section of a play or short story. Tellez pre-qualified for state earlier in the season, along with Williams and Pepper.

“I’ve been waiting all year to go but it was also very stressful and sad because it was my last tournament,” Williams said.

Williams and Pepper have been on the team all four of their high school years.

“I love the feeling that everyone was a big team and we all bonded over this collective excitement for our competitions. We all got closer whenever someone did well because we would be so proud of each other, I got to do things that I never would have thought of doing otherwise. Debate has introduced me to so many people and so many ideas that have shaped who I am today,” Williams said.

The speech and debate team placed 22 out of 68 schools with competing students at the state level. The team scored 12 points; Williams and Pepper won five from the quarter final round for Policy Debate and Tellez gains seven points from getting third in Dramatic Interpretation.

“My least favorite thing about it is probably the stress. While I was in debate I had this constant stress that I always needed to be prepping and that all my time spent not prepping would be an advantage to my competitors,” Williams said.

Due to the large time commitment and lack of large scholarships for the sport, none of the seniors are are continuing to compete at the college level.  

Tellez said, “I think I will leave my speech participation in high school but I could see myself possibly helping to coach when I’m older.”

By Ian Campbell



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