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Norris City Alum Leads SIC Forensic Falcons to Triumph at Moraine Valley Speech Tournament

Southeastern Illinois College’s Forensic Falcons were named Community College Champions this weekend at the Moraine Valley Appelquist Speech Tournament in Palos Hills, Illinois. The Falcons earned top school honors and several individual awards at the event, which featured entries in public address, interpretation, and limited preparation. Twenty-five colleges and universities from as far away as Oregon and California competed at Moraine.

Norris City’s Rachel Russell was among the students competing at this weekend’s tournament. She notes, “It was incredibly exciting – and nerve-wracking – but mostly exciting. And it was worth the hard work.”

Coach Jenny Billman agrees. “It’s rewarding to see our students shine after they have worked hard. I am so proud!”

Each competition builds to the 2024 Phi Rho Pi National Tournament in Reno, Nevada.  The team is coached by Jenny Billman, Paul Cummins, and Rachel Parish.

Individual results from the tournament are as follows.

Grant Dooley, Harrisburg: 1st in open communication analysis, 2nd in cross squad improvisation, 3rd in open duo interpretation, 3rd in overall individual sweepstakes.

Bradlee Thomas, Harrisburg: 1st in open dramatic interpretation, 1st in novice speech to entertain, 2nd in open duo interpretation (with partner Erica Johnson), 4th in overall individual sweepstakes.

Rachel Russell, Norris City: 1st in novice dramatic interpretation, 4th in open duo interpretation (with partner Brock Newman), 4th in novice informative speaking, 5th in open prose interpretation.

Brock Newman, Eldorado: 1st in open prose interpretation, 4th in open duo interpretation (with partner Rachel Russell).

Abby Zirkelbach, Marion: 1st in open speech to entertain.

Neva Wasson, Harrisburg: 2nd in open prose interpretation, 2nd in novice speech to entertain, 3rd in open duo interpretation (with partner Grant Dooley), 6th in open dramatic interpretation.

Erica Johnson, Equality: 2nd in open duo interpretation (with partner Bradlee Thomas), 2nd in open poetry.

Connor Fauset, Benton: 2nd in open communication analysis, 3rd in open prose interpretation.

Ethan Bordoy, Harrisburg: 3rd in open communication analysis, 3rd in open speech to entertain.

Carter Wiseman, Galatia: 3rd in novice impromptu speaking, 6th in open persuasive speaking.

Also competing: Emily Ross (Marion) and Hayden Moore (Ridgway).


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