The announcer’s voice reverberated throughout the courtyard as San Gabriel High School’s Speech and Debate team awaited the final results of the tournament; a single trophy was awarded to junior varsity and sophomore Angela Lu in Dramatic Interpretation, while excellence and superior ribbons were given to those who did well in their events.
Hosted at Gabrielino High School, Fall Novice was held on Nov. 12 for novice and junior varsity members of Speech and Debate. The Matador team had a strong showing, with over 20 competitors participating in the tournament. Coach Jessica Sandercock said that she was “super excited for the novice [on the team]” because of their hard work.”
“The prospect of them staying in speech and debate and making the team what it is now is very high,” Sandercock said. “I’m very lucky to have the novices that we do have on the team this year.”
One of these novices is junior Iris Zhou, who competed in Impromptu and National Extemporaneous Speaking.
“[The tournament was] not as terrifying as I expected it to be, and it was a good opportunity to gain experience and learn from others,” Zhou said. “I feel accomplished because [my scores for Fall Novice] were better than my scores from Package Deal and my last tournament; however, it shows that there’s definitely room for improvement.”
Freshman Scott Ho, who competed in Oratorical Interpretation, holds the same hopes of improving himself and “[presenting] a performance that [he is] passionate for because the best performances are ones that you can relate to.”
“It was annoying [that] I was critiqued for the same mistake over and over again, but I managed to improve on that mistake a tad bit when performing during the tournament,” Ho said.
Overall, the tournament was positive and productive for all those involved, providing experience for newer members of the team.
“We’re off to a really good start with competition season and we’re just going to try and keep going and work our way up,” Sandercock said.
Speech and Debate’s next tournament, Fall Varsity, will take place on Dec. 10 at Arroyo High School.