CORVALLIS – More than 500 students nervously paced the halls of Corvallis High School on Saturday, awaiting results of the Invitational Speech Tournament.
The two-day event ended after long days packed with three debates, six drama events and 10 speech events.
Corvallis High School Speech and Debate Co-Captain Michael McKay says leading his last home tournament is bittersweet.
“To be able to come back home and speak in front of individuals that I know, speak in front of judges and audience members, and know for a fact that I’m giving back to the same community that helped me get to where I am,” McKay said.
McKay has competed in national Speech and Debate tournaments for his event, Extemporaneous Speaking.
He plans to attend Biola University in the fall for Public Relations and Communications, with a minor in Political Science.
This weekend’s tournament was also bittersweet for Loyola High School coach Matthew Stergios, who is retiring in 2019 after coaching Speech and Debate for 38 years.
“Some of my former competitors are now in their mid-50’s. And they tell me all the time about [how] speech and debate really changed their lives,” Stergios said. “And being a part of a team like that, with what we’ve accomplished is one of the greatest feelings of my life.”
Loyola Speech and Debate is aiming for its 36th state championship in a row at the Class B and C State competition which will be held on January 23.
-Katie Miller reporting for MTN News