Speech Team Brings Home First

Serena Tran, Sophomore Writer

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Have you heard the word…s spoken by DePaul Preps’ very own speech team? Well, if you haven’t, you’re in the right place. On November 3rd, DePaul hosted the very first Chicago Catholic Forensic League (CCFL) Qualifier Tournament of the 2018-2019 school year. There were five schools competing: Marist, Fenwick, Evanston Township High School, Aqsa School, and of course, DePaul Prep.


Each year, students have to audition to see if they have what it takes to be part of the speech team. Returning members are already promised a spot on the team, so no need to audition twice rams. This year’s official speech team consists of:


– Emma Holmes, Ashley Laster, and Daden Gabryszewski in the category, “Oratorical Declamation”, known as “Dec”.


– Jackie Rojo, Avery Downes, and Lauren Wilson in the category, “Oral Interpretation of Literature”, known as “OI”.


– Dash Gabryszewski, Dave Wu, and Matthew Dace in the category, “Extemporaneous Speaking”, known as “Extemp”.


– Serena Tran, Rebecca Brenner, and Andrea Arellano in the category, “Original Oratory”, known as “OO”.


– Alanna McKenna, Graeme Phillips, and Maggie Hollerman in the category, “Dramatic Performance”, known as “DP”.


– Edward Morgan and Sam White, Carly O’Brien and Aaron Holton, and Ramiro Maldonado and Dash Gabryszewski in the category, “Duo Interpretation of Literature”, known as “Duo”.


– And of course, Sofia Enclona as team manager.


At first, as team, they started a bit later than usual. Things were a little rough at the beginning, but everyone came together and pushed through. If you were observant enough, you may have noticed a few speech team members strolling through the halls, talking to themselves; or maybe, you noticed someone walking back and forth, staring at nothing, don’t worry, that’s normal for speech team members!


The week of October 28th was stressful. The tournament was arriving fast and by Friday everyone was practically having dreams about their speeches. Finally, the day came, and the team was expected to be at school by the refreshing time of 7:00am. Sure, everyone was tired, and a bit groggy, but hard work pays off! How? Well… eleven members made it to the final round, or in speech language, eleven members broke! When the list of students who made it to finals was posted, things were a tad hectic. There was lots of screaming and jumping involved.


Here are the members who placed and their category:


– In the category Declamation: Emma Holmes received 5th place and Ashley Laster received 3rd.


– In the category Dramatic Performance: Alanna McKenna received 3rd place.


– In the category Duo Interpretation: Dash Gabryszewski and Ramiro Maldonado received 4th, and Aaron Holton and Carly O’Brien received 2nd.


– In the category Extemporaneous Speaking: Dash Gabryszewski received 5th and Dave Wu received 3rd.


– In the category Oral Interpretation: Jackie Rojo received 5th and Avery Downes received 4th.


– In the category Original Oratory: Serena Tran received 5th and Rebecca Brenner received 2nd.


And that’s not all, DePaul Prep took home, even though they were already at home, first place! But the work’s not over, there are still two more tournaments to compete in before we see who qualifies for nationals, so keep your ears open over the next few months.


So, all in all, the team came to speak, to break, and to win— which they did. And of course, a special thanks to the coaches! This shout out goes to Mr. Conlin, Mrs. Conlin, and Mr. Petersen. The team truly couldn’t have done it without them!

One more important note, don’t ask why there are bones on the flag, they’ll get way too hyped up.