Forensics competes at state, prepares for nationals

Kaitlin Clark, Entertainment Editor

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The forensics team put all they had into the 6A State forensics tournament in Olathe this week, finishing the event with four semi-finalists and one finalist. Senior Lily Colburn placed second in International Extemporaneous Speaking and fourth in Informative Speaking, making her the only Manhattan High student to make it to finals.

“When I found out I made it to finals in both of my events I was ecstatic,” Colburn said. “Few people make it to semifinals in both of [their events].”

In addition to the team’s one finalist, seniors John Domingo and Martina Hernandez as well as juniors Jacob Wineland and Blaise Hayden made it to semifinals in Oration, Duo Interpretation, Duo Interpretation and Prose Interpretation respectively.

“I wouldn’t really [say] I excelled at anything but I can say that I tried my hardest with every aspect of my performance,” Domingo said.

The level of difficulty of this tournament meant that the forensics team’s victories were hard-earned.

“It’s just not like you’re just going against everyday forensics people anymore,” Domingo said. “These people earned their spot to get to state so all… the competition was a lot harder.”

In addition, younger forensics members had to compete against people who had much more experience than they did.

“What I found hard was competing against four-year seniors and competing against high competition,” sophomore Trinity Brockman said.

Overall, it’s been a mostly positive season for the forensics team, as they have several members qualified for nationals, which will take place in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, this summer. Nationals will be the toughest competition the forensics team has faced this year, and everyone on the team will be doing their best to help out, regardless of if they will be attending the tournament or not.

“I didn’t qualify for finals but we [on the team] will probably help our World Schools team prepare,” sophomore Megan Keenan said. World Schools is an event which combines prepared and impromptu topics and is very interactive for competitors.

Nationals extends the season for a few members of the team, meaning that they will have to work harder than ever to be ready.

“I’ll be going to nationals in informative speaking, so while it’s nice to celebrate this accomplishment for a while, the season isn’t over yet and I still have a lot of work to do,” Colburn said.

Nationals is on the horizon, but for those who didn’t qualify, the forensics tournament season is at an end. As always, the team was grateful to spend another tournament competing side by side as the year draws to a close.

“My favorite part was just being with the team,” sophomore Alison Payne said. “They’re like a second family.”

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