Trojans team shines at National Speech and Debate

The Morristown West Speech and Debate Team - with their coaches and chaperones - competed in the National Speech Debate Tournament in Dallas, Texas.

A record number of students from Morristown-Hamblen High School West competed in the National Speech and Debate Tournament this week in Dallas, Texas.

West High School Senior Chris Cost and Junior Dalton Miks placed in the top 20 in the nation in duo interpretation out of 233 competitors, said Suzanne Wolfe Terry, forensics instructor for West High School.

Junior Karcy Kowalski placed in the top 20 in dramatic interpretation out of 236 competitors. Senior Pedro Reyes placed in the top 24 in prose reading out of 343 competitors.

The tournament started last Sunday with 4,800 competitors nationwide and 10 West High School students participated who qualified for the event.

A total of 108,000 students across the country were eligible to qualify for the event.

Other students who competed included Haleigh Henry, James Hicks, D.J. Needs, Taegan Collins, Jacob Seals and Chris Best.

“Under challenging circumstances, the kids were a pleasure and always went above any goal set for them,” Terry said. “I have no doubt they represent Morristown and Morristown West with dignity, determination and grace.”

The students also met basketball legend Shaquille O’Neal during the event and enjoyed real Texas barbecue, Terry said.

Terry said she wanted to thank Janee and Andy Kowalski, Deb Miksa, Jacki Collins and Sydney Terry for their help and dedication to the students during the week.