Battle Mountain Speech Team grabs state honors |

Battle Mountain Speech Team grabs state honors

Cindy Ramunno

It’s not debatable -the Battle Mountain High School speech team is on a roll.

The team has progressed in the state competition, participating in the National Qualifying Speech Meet for the first time.

At the earlier state speech festival, 32 Battle Mountain speakers advanced to the State Meet, which was held last January. Ten team members performed well enough to move on to the next level.

The National Qualifying Speech Meet was held April 2 and 3 in Greeley.

Jessie Hanson was selected as this year’s state champion in drama interpretation and then progressed through the preliminary rounds to the finals of the national qualifying tournament. Hanson placed seventh in the Rocky Mountain Region.

Battle Mountain is an charter member of the Rocky Mountain North League, which includes schools in Fort Collins, Greeley, Steamboat Springs, Moffat County and Longmont.

Competitor Josie Sutner said the experience was a good one.

“It was different from regular competition season but it was interesting to compete at a higher, more competitive level,” she said.

Teammate Kayla Cheatham agreed, saying, “I enjoyed watching the humor (competition) and meeting new people. I can’t wait to come back next year.”

Although Rebecca Richardson didn’t place at state, she said the competition was a learning experience. “Even though I didn’t progress far, I felt that I competed better and learned more than I did during the season,” she said.

With coach Suzanne Foster at Battle Mountain, the school has performed well in speech, debate and drama competitions. She said having 32 members qualify for state is an amazing achievement.

As for champ Hanson, she said she would love to compete every weekend. “It was fun and challenging to compete against people who prioritize speech – it’s really all they do.”

Along with Foster, the team is coached by Matt Sargent. The captains are Meghan Meehan, Maggie Sheahan, Krystal Ettawil and Stephanie Rice.

Local students in state speech competition:

Jessie Hanson

State Champion Ð drama interpretation

Aaron Quintana

3rd place Ð solo acting

Kelly Lemon/Chelsea Rosenthal

5th place Ð duet acting-drama

Meghan Meehan

3rd place Ð creative story telling

Jessie Hanson/Fred Epstein

7th place Ð duet acting Ð humor

Kayla Cheatham

3rd place Ð impromptu speaking

Josie Sutner

5th place Ð value debate

Kelsey Abbott

4th place Ð drama interpretation

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