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By ALAINA BARTEL
Daily News Staff Writer
The Ketchikan High School Drama, Debate and Forensics team hosted the last regional DDF tournament of the school year with teams from around Southeast Alaska this past weekend, which saw many Kayhi debaters rise to the top.
Thomas Brooks, along with his partner Frances Barry, took first place in duo interpretation with their piece about horror movies. Brooks explained that the pair took their skit and had to act it out and emote things without looking at or touching each other throughout the entire piece.
“It’s pretty hard,” Brooks said, “but it’s also a lot of fun and it’s like our stress-reliever away from debate.”
Brooks is a senior this year, and the state debate competition in February will be his last high school level debate event. He said what he’ll miss most is debating itself — becoming more knowledgeable about a topic and using that information in a meaningful way, which will likely payoff during his upcoming studies as a political science student in college.
“It’s fun applying everything that I’ve learned into a debate and for the work to pay off,” Brooks added.
Brooks and his partner Madyson Traudt also placed sixth in debate, and Traudt took eighth in speaker points. Barry also took third in extemporaneous speaking, and she and her partner Henry Clark placed seventh in debate. Clark also took fifth in extemporaneous commentary.
Piper Cooper took first in original oration, second in extemporaneous speaking and third in speaker points. Cooper and her partner Chris Brown also took second place in final debate, and Seth Chernick placed third in speaker points.
Arick Mattson placed first in humorous interpretation, third in extemporaneous commentary and 10th in speaker points. Mattson and his partner Abby Gaugler took eighth in debate, while Jared Valentine and Brendan Roof placed fourth in debate.
Valentine and Roof’s debate topic was “The United States Government should abolish the capital gains tax.” Roof said he was more comfortable debating in the affirmative on this topic — because he researched and prepared their argument, and Valentine was able to adapt quickly.
“I like the competitiveness,” Valentine said. “Part of the public forum debate is the cross-fires and you can get one-on-one with somebody. It’s really interesting.”
Valentine also took third in expository speaking and sixth in speaker points, while Roof placed second in expository speaking. He said he’s not looking forward to what comes after the state tournament on Feb. 22 through Feb. 24 in Anchorage, which 12 Kayhi DDF students will be attending.
“I’m very thankful for the five seniors that influenced me to do well this year, and I’m going to be sad when they leave. Especially this one right here,” Roof said, pointing to Brooks.