San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

March 30th, 2010
SMHS speech and debate team sweeps district competition

032310speechdebFront row, left to right: Selena Selvera, Julie Munoz, Kelley Mathis. Back row, left to right: Frankie Torres, Henry Finch, Irene Morse, John Smith, Kristine Staggs, Keegan Taylor, Brittany Howard, Cameron Herber, Ben Painton.


The San Marcos High School (SMHS) speech and debate team is a University Interscholastic League (UIL) district champion for the second straight year.

SMHS scored more points than all of the competing district schools combined at this year’s competition. Of the 15 students sent to compete in the district tournament, 12 of them will be moving on the regional level competition.

Last year’s state champion, senior Irene Morse, defended her title in persuasive speaking, taking top honors at the competition. Senior Kelly Mathis joins Morse at the regional competition with a second place finish. Senior John Smith took fifth place.

In the category of informative speaking, the team garnered all three qualifying spots to compete in the regional match, with senior Henry Finch as district champion, freshman Frankie Torres in second and  junior Keegan Taylor placing third.

In the interpretive events, senior Julie Munoz won the district championship in prose reading. Ben Painton, finishing second, will join her at the regional meet. Junior Selena Selvera placed fifth.

Junior Brittany Howard qualified for the regional competition, taking second place in the category of poetry. She will be joined by senior Kristine Staggs, who qualified with a third place finish

The team also swept all three qualifying spots in the Lincoln-Douglas Debate event, with Henry Finch winning the first place district title, Irene Morse in second place and sophomore Cameron Herber in third.

The regional cfhampionship meet will take place in Huntsville on April 23-24. The students will competing there for a shot at the state championship meet in May.

The brother and sister team of Lacye and C.J. Odam are the coaches for the team.

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