Scout Speech takes gold at Districts


Courtesy Photo

The David City Speech team placed first at the District Speech Meet held at the David City High School on Mon., March 13. The Scouts were the defending champions of the 2016 meet.

Kasey Stallbaum

The David City High School Speech team hosted the District Speech Meet competition on Mon., March 13. The team was first overall and qualified 13 events for the State competition.

Competitors of the 2017 Districts Speech Meet included: seniors Evan Forney, Iris Prochaska, and Becca Meusch; juniors Sarah Wolfenden, Bethany Tebbe, Brooke Bell, Josh Escamilla, Jackson Hardin, and Will Heller; sophomores Ebani Filbert, Olivia Bell, Ashley Roemmich, Miles Svoboda, Carter Ossian, Bernita Lunde, Laurel Ockander, and Macy Svoboda; and freshmen Ivy Miller, Neleigh Kovar, Brittney Palik, Kirsten Bell, and Skylar Busch.

This year the speech team had three Oral Interpretation of Drama (OID) groups competing. Inside Out, performed by Forney, Tebbe, Wolfenden, Prochaska, and Brooke Bell, is based on the Pixar movie ‘Inside Out’. It is about the emotions within the main character, Reilly’s, mind.

Miller, Busch, Palik, Miles Svoboda, and Kirsten Bell make up the OID team performing Land O’ Plenty, aAn act about a boy whose mother has placed him in an all girls school.

Performing the OID, Killer Halloween, was Roemmich, Filbert, Escamilla, and Olivia Bell. The plot of the exploit is about a group of friends who try to protect themselves from the Halloween Killer, but in the end, all the friends of the main character die.

Macy Svoboda, a member of the speech team for two years, competed in Informative and Persuasive. Her Informative speech was about elephants having a cancer-fighting gene, called TP53, and allowing elephants to be cancer-free and using studies to see the difference between the gene in humans and elephants.

“To me, this topic can make a real connection with many people because so many people around the world get cancer and many die from it,” Macy Svoboda said. “I think it helps everyone get a little more educated on different solutions and cures to cancer.”

A speech titled, The Truth is Out There, was used for Macy’s Persuasive speech. It is about fake news and how people put untrue articles online all the time for reasons such as popularity. Olivia Bell also performed a Persuasive speech about how people swear when they talk.

Wolfenden gave the speech in Entertainment about gullibility.

“My entertainment speech means a lot to me personally in a way that it has really brought me out of my comfort zone,” Wolfenden said. “I’ve improved a lot over the season with my speech and really regret not doing it my previous years of high school.”

Tebbe’s Informative is about the placebo effect. Her speech starts with a definition of what it is and how it functions, then she explains how it is used in modern medicine, and finally she give examples of placebo ploys to placate the public.

Performing in Poetry is Kovar with a speech about not always being protected.

“My poetry is pretty sad, and it is really nice to be able to connect to the judges and audience,” Kovar said.

Also in Poetry is Palik who gives a speech about poverty. Palik said giving this speech makes her grateful for what she has.

Prochaska, a three year speech member, enacted a Humorous Interpretation speech titled A Little Murder Never Hurt Anybody. It is about a man named Matthew who has a new year’s resolution is to murder his wife, but the wife has a resolution to stay alive. Instead of murdering his wife, Matthew accidentally kills everyone else such as their gardener, their dog Fifi, and his wife’s friend.

Competing in Serious Prose is Ossian with a speech about a College Professor who at first seems to be a racist toward his students for no reason. Later on, he explains why the professor feels this way and then feels guilty for thinking badly about his colored students even though they never did anything bad to him.

“My speech shows me how large of a problem racism has been to our society, and the threat it poses to everybody,” Ossian said.

He also competes in Extemporaneous and is given a different topic every meet. Ossian said it is basically a super advanced current event.

Laurel Ockander also performs in Extemporaneous and said she usually gets a topic over something political. Laurel also gives two other speeches in Persuasive and Impromptu.

Her speech in Persuasive is titled Outrage Obsession and is about how we should worry about things that matter more and less about things that are pointless and silly. In Impromptu, Laurel likes to talk about something funny like quotes or hashtags.

Sisters, Brooke and Kirsten Bell, both perform in Entertainment. Brooke’s speech is over stereotypes in this world and Kirsten’s speech is about breaking the rules. Brooke is a three year member of the speech team and this is Kirsten’s first year.

The Duet team of Roemmich and Forney put on a show when they perform Let’s Pretend This Never Happened. The act is a story about how two people met and fell in love.

“I personally love both of the speeches,” Forney said. “I find my duet script hilarious and touching at the same time.”

Meanwhile, the Duet team Hardin and Heller take a more serious approach as a duo in Drums, Girls, and Dangerous Pie.  The speech shows the life of being a brother. It’s a real and serious piece that teaches us to love our siblings.

Heller also performs in Program of Oral Interpretation (POI) and Humorous Prose.  His POI is about bravery, and his Humorous Prose is titled The Perfect Plan with a few Bumps along the Way.

“My humorous shows my personality,” Heller said. “I like to be quirky and zany, and in this piece, I can really let myself loose and go all out.”.

Competing in Persuasive, POI, Poetry, and Serious is Meusch. Her Persuasive speech is over gossip and how it is beneficial to communication, society, and behavior. Her POI is about the five stages of loss and how people act during them. Meusch’s Poetry had the topic of Calcalls, or in other words, street harassment and how it needs to end. In Serious, her speech is about a bipolar corpse robber.  

“Mr. Ockander has been able to give up so much time throughout the years because he loves to watch us improve in Speech and especially grow as a person. During Speech, I spend more time at school than with my family, and he usually takes the parental role during that time,” Meusch said. “The team spends so much time at practice and we are able to even pick up on some life values and lessons along the way. Speech has made me the person I am today, no doubt. I have learned so much about not only speech itself, but about life through the content of my speeches. I can’t put into words how much our Speech team is appreciative to have such a great coach.”

Results of the District Speech Meet are as follows: Humorous: Prochaska second, Heller third; Extemp: Laurel Ockander third, Ossian fourth; Poetry: Hardin first, Meusch second; Persuasive: Laurel Ockander first, Macy Svoboda second; Entertainment: Kirsten Bell fourth, Brooke Bell sixth; Informative: Tebbe first, Macy Svoboda third; OID: Tebbe, Brooke Bell, Wolfenden, Forney, and Prohaska third; and Duet; Roemmich-Forney first, Hardin-Heller second.

The top three in each even qualified for the State Competition.

“The team has grown to understand each other,” Speech Coach Jarod Ockander said. “We have had some success throughout the year from a competitive standpoint.  We won conference for the ninth year in a row; we competed well and placed second to Millard North at Norfolk.  So, we are hitting our stride at just the right time as state approaches.”

The David City Speech Team will be taking 13 events to compete in the State Speech Competition on Thurs., March 23 in Kearney.