TU Board applauds DV speech-debate champs

Desert Vista Speech and Debate coach Brittany Stanchik, accompanied by officers of the team, appeared before the Tempe Union Governing Board last week to accept its congratulations for becoming Arizona’s winningest team in the history of speech and debate competitions. (YouTube)

The Desert Vista High School Speech and Debate Team was formally honored by the Tempe Union Governing Board last week for scoring its 18th state championship and solidifying its status as the winningest team in that competition’s history in Arizona.

Desert Vista Speech and Debate coaches Brittany Stanchik, who is retiring from the position, and Frankie Marchi led the team to victory with the help of club officers and seniors Isaac Kan, president; Sita Sudhakar, vice president; and Jeremy Elwell, President of Speech.

“Each speech and debate competition event features a different form of public speaking and requires a unique skill set,” Superintendent Dr. Kevin Mendivil said. “Speech events can require extensive knowledge of current events or they can be dramatic or humorous.

“Those participating in debate must thoroughly understand both sides of an issue in order to effectively convince a judge that their side is more valid.”

Here are the final placings:

Congressional Debate: House 1: 2nd place, Isaac Kan; 3rd place, Alex Shin. House 2: 2nd place, Sydney Burns. House 3: 2nd place, Ali Nikad; 6th place, Andy Lu.

Lincoln Douglas Debate: Octa finalists: Vincent Montalbano and Gabrielle Vines; Quarter finalists: Valerie Peters and Alexander Brown.

Public Forum Debate: Octa finalists: Stefanie Fan/Savannah Yu and Calliope Burkhart and Nila Sathyan; 3rd place: Deborah Garcia and Ny’lynn Johnson; 2nd place: Cora Wintring and Praghalba Ghatigar.

Policy Debate: 3rd place: Andy Lu and Adam Dudebout; 1st place: Isaac Kan and Ali Nikad.

Extemporaneous Speaking: Semi-finalist: Tarah McCann (9) / 2nd place: Isaac Kan (12)

Impromptu Speaking: Semi-finalists: Keerthana Kumar and Vincent Montalbano; 3rd place: Isaac Kan.

Informative Speaking: Semi-finalists: Gabri Ramsey and Yehansa Hettiwatte; 6th place: Kennedy Galassi; 3rd place: Julia Juvera; 2nd place: Miranda Daye.

Original Oratory: Semi-finalists: Elijah Snow (12) and Aashna Ramani (11) / 1st place: Sita Sudhakar (12)

Duo Interpretation: 1st place- Jeremy Elwell and Sophie Rogers.

Duet Act: 5th place- Vincent Montalbano and Emily Wright; 3rd place- Julia Juvera and Alyssa Hattula; 2nd place- Rishik Chaudhary and Pravin Munshi.

Humorous Interpretation: 5th place- Amany Luwaga; 4th place- Gwyneth Doebbeling; 2nd place, Jeremy Elwell.

Dramatic Interpretation: 5th place- Sophie Rogers; 4th place- Rishik Chaudhary; 2nd place, Gwyneth Doebbeling.

Prose Reading: 6th place- Aashna Ramani; 5th place- Valerie Peters; 3rd place- Nicole Sandoval; 2nd place, Keerthana Kumar; 1st place-Ny’lynn Johnson.

Program Oral Interpretation: 4th place, Elijah Snow and 2nd place,- Sophia Siekierski.

Poetry Reading: 4th place, Sophia Siekierski and 2nd place, Gabriel Sauls.

Original Spoken Word Poetry: 5th place, Cora Wintring, and 3rd place, Isheeta Gorman.

“It’s excellent that we do have this time in the sun not for me but anytime that we acknowledge the brilliance of my students,” Stanchik told the board,

The team’s appearance brought a wistful memory from board member Armando Montero who congratulated them and noted he had been a member of the team for three years prior to his graduation in 2019.

“I really want to stress the value that this team has for so many students,” he said, explaining that it teaches them how to give back to the community and imparts skills they can use in everyday life as well as class.

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