Posted on: November 19, 2020 Posted by: Glacier Staff Comments: 0

By Destiny Hopkins, JRN 111 Student

Taking a new virtual “stage” this semester, the Moraine Valley Speech and Debate team members are excelling, winning a gold medal in overall sweepstakes in their second tournament Friday and Saturday.

Head coach John Nash said the team “pulled it out in the ninth inning.”

“We had two students out of competition due to illness and two more team members who were participating from quarantine, but the positive synergy ultimately won out,” he said.

Colleges and universities from the tristate area participated in the online tournament in the Region IV Affiliated Forensics League. The Cyclones eked out a win over the University of Wisconsin by only 5 points.

“It shows me as a coach just how adaptable, dedicated, and talented our Moraine Valley students are,” Nash said. “Amid a pandemic and a divisive election, I am comforted by the normalcy that this academic competition brings our students.”

In its first online tournament Oct. 23-24, the team took the silver medal, with 14 colleges competing. The debate tournament took place on the first day, and the second day consisted of members participating in individual events.

Amid a pandemic and a divisive election, I am comforted by the normalcy that this academic competition brings our students.”

John Nash, coach of the Speech and Debate Team

 “The tournament in October went really well,” said Nash. “Our students have worked extremely hard to both prepare and adapt to this new form of competition.”

They did encounter some challenges in this new virtual form, struggling with a few video glitches and lagging. This format is still very new to everyone, but the challenges allowed the team to know what mishaps might happen during their upcoming virtual competitions.

 “Virtual competition brings new complications and also opens the doors for creativity,” Nash said.

Team members figured out the best way to put on their best performance despite any glitches. The creativity came from competitors using various angles to get the best and clearest view for the judges and the audience watching.

Moraine Valley’s Speech Team competed virtually, but still performed on campus in a classroom. Not every school had their team members competing virtually from their campus.

“It was interesting to see how different the video setups were. Some of the competitors were at home,”  said Nash. “Using lapel microphones and ring lights, our students spoke up and spoke out, sharing their messages across the airwaves.”

Nash credited the other coaches, Amanda Pettigrew and Krista Appelquist, for helping prepare the students for success.

The team and its coaches are diligently preparing for their next virtual tournament, which will be held Dec. 11-12. The links to the virtual rooms are not made public for safety reasons, but Nash said anyone interested in watching the competition can email him at Nash@morainevalley.edu.

The Cyclones are also planning to host a tournament over winter break “in an effort to keep the students connected to their campus and to the activity,” Nash said.

Results of November tournament

Nicole Dela Rosa: first place in Speaking to Entertain

Noor Awaidah: first place in Communication Analysis and second place in Prose Interpretation

Shelby Woody: first place in Duo Interpretation and second place in Dramatic Interpretation

Tyler Orel: first place in Duo Interpretation and third place in Prose Interpretation 

Alexis Lyons: third place in Program of Oral Interpretation

Aidan McGuire: third place in Poetry Interpretation and third place in Persuasive Speaking

Results of October tournament

Nicole Dela Rosa: first place in Speaking to Entertain and third place in Communication Analysis

Noor Awaidah: second place in Communication Analysis

Shelby Woody: first place in Duo Interpretation and third place in Dramatic Interpretation

Tyler Orel: second place in Prose Interpretation 

Alexis Lyons: third place in Program of Oral Interpretation

Aidan McGuire: third place in Poetry Interpretation 

Trystan Julian: first place in Duo Interpretation


FEATURED PHOTO: Speech and Debate Team members (top to bottom of stairs) Moises Bello, Alexis Lyons, Noor Awaidah, Nicole Dela Rosa, Trystan Julian, Aidan McGuire, and Shelby Woody prepare for their first virtual tournament.