The Bitterroot Valley teams competed well against tough competition at the Montana High School Association Class A Speech and Drama Tournament in Belgrade last weekend.
Stevensville High School senior Joy Hendrickson was the Bitterroot Valley’s only state champion, taking first in Dramatic Interpretation of Literature.
The Corvallis High School team placed second in Drama.
The Stevensville High School Speech, Debate and Drama team is coached by Sarah Piper and J. W. McClintic.
Piper said that four years ago when Hendrickson asked to join the team she was very quiet.
“I had to ask her to speak up,” Piper said. “After her partner dropped out the night before her first big trip, I thought for sure that is the last I would see of this quiet, polite little ninth grader. Little did I know that she would flourish into a chatterbox, full of humor, drama and facts about quirky punctuation marks.”
Hendrickson said this competitive season was a challenge but she’s happy she persevered.
“A lot of hard work was put into making this win happen and it was well worth it,” Hendrickson said. “I've had a lot of support from my amazing coaches and awesome teammates and I wouldn't be where I am today without them.”
Piper said she is honored to have been a part of watching Hendrickson grow into a confident, talented actress who is “ready to tackle anything life throws her way.”
“She is an incredible leader, who helps her teammates find success while also leading from the front,” Piper said. “I am so proud of her.”
The SHS team’s additional placings at the state tournament include: Chy Vincent, seventh place, Informative Speaking; Dani Mosser and Autumn Smalley, fifth place, Dramatic Duo; Missa Elmore, fourth place, Informative Speaking; and Missa Elmore, fourth place, Humorous Interpretation.
The entire SHS team placed in the top 16 in their respective events, across all categories.
“Every one of our speech and drama competitors made the first cut into semifinals, an incredible accomplishment,” Piper said. “Five competitors made it into finals, and are now among the top eight state-wide. One of them is the state-wide champion.”
Piper said her small team is strong and usually on stage for awards.
“They make my heart burst out of my chest with pride in them - pride in their placements, but also (and more importantly) pride in their strength, compassion, humor and intellect.”
The Corvallis High School Speech, Debate and Drama team, coached by Doug and Michelle McConnaha, placed second in Drama at the Class A State tournament.
The race for the Drama championship came down to the wire and at the end Laurel High School won first place by 12 points.
“I am extremely proud of our showing at the state meet,” Doug McConnaha said. “Our team has a majority of new members this year and they stepped up and were strongly competitive and displayed good sportsmanship. I am also very appreciative of the support our program receives from the administration and staff at Corvallis. I can’t wait for next year.”
CHS individual placings are: Michael McKay – second in Impromptu and third in Extemporaneous; Aubree McGinnis and River Gladwin – second in Humerous Duo; River Gladwin – second in Humerous Solo; Christian Reed – third in Dramatic Interp; Jessica Boaz and Arthur Ryan – third in Dramatic Duo; Arthur Ryan and Landen Connor – third in Classical Theatre; Sofia Frongillo and Tedd Robinson – fourth in Dramatic Duo; Aubree McGinnis – fourth in Dramatic Solo; Whitney Wyche – fifth in Informative; Izzie Devine – fifth in Dramatic Solo; Tedd Robinson – fifth in Humerous Solo; Kenny Rickert and Nik Talia – fifth in Humorous Duo; Izzie Devine and Darius Nisly - sixth in Humorous Duo; Signee Storrud and Tiani Ertel – sixth in Dramatic Duo; Landon Conner – sixth in Pantomime; Jasmine King and Sofia Frongillo – eighth in Classical Theatre; Darius Nisly – eighth in Humorous Solo; Hunter Paladin – eighth in Pantomime; Jessica Boaz – semifinals in Dramatic Solo; Inga Watt – semifinals in Impromptu; Addie Rohlman – semifinals in Original Oratory and MPA; Kenny Rickert and Hunter Paladin – semifinals in Classical Theatre; and Nik Talia – semifinals in Pantomime
The Hamilton High School Speech, Debate and Drama team coached by Brenna Chvilicek and Mariah Ancell placed exchange student from Poland Marcelina Wardecka with an eighth place in Dramatic Interpretation.
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