Members of the Speech Team prepare for a showcase event on Feb. 2, the day before the Regional competition. The showcase allowed the students the chance to perform for fellow students and WEGO staff ahead of Saturdays competition.
Members of the Speech Team prepare for a showcase event on Feb. 2, the day before the Regional competition. The showcase allowed the students the chance to perform for fellow students and WEGO staff ahead of Saturday’s competition.
Photo by Leslie Fireman

Speech Team performs at regional level

On Feb. 3, the team headed to Wheaton Warrenville South for IHSA Regionals.

Eight students from West Chicago High School Speech Team competed at Regionals this Saturday, Feb. 3, at Wheaton Warrenville South. 

At the event, students had the opportunity to showcase and compete with pieces and skills they have been working on for the entire season. The regional team consists of nine members: Alex Bradley (senior), Mia Valliquette (senior), Lucas Brown (senior), Francis Moffatt (senior), Rory Rudden (senior), Alejandra Rocha (junior), Sentia Irakoze (junior), Danais Gomez Garcia (junior), and Eliana Mains (sophomore).

Brown placed third in extemporaneous speech and will advance to Sectionals.

This has been a season of tremendous growth on Speech Team.

“I joined for a few friends and thought it would be pretty fun. It was hard trying to pick and memorize the speech, but honestly worth it. Tournament days were fun, getting to meet new people and hangout as a team,” Rocha said.

Speech Team’s season started in November, and ever since then students have been competing at various competitions every Saturday. There are three advisors that run and coach the West Chicago Speech Team: English teacher Paul Lichy, once again returned to be the head coach, and is assisted by AVID teacher Nicole Stadler and English teacher Mark Begovich.

“I do believe we will have multiple competitors that will break through to Sectionals. I am forever proud of our Wildcats and I know that they will really bring it this weekend,” Stadler said prior to the competition.

Speech is an IHSA-sponsored event in which students compete in different categories such as dramatic interpretation, original comedy, radio speaking ,oratorical declamation, poetry recitation, and more.

“I think the best way to describe it is, and I’ve said this a lot of times, it’s like track and field but for performance, for speaking and performing. We have fourteen different events, in the same way that track and field, the Olympics, as you know, all the different events that are involved,” Lichy said.

In order to advance to sectionals next weekend February 10, each student must place in the top four for their respective category.

“It’s definitely been a more difficult season since we’ve had a lot of changes of who’s on the team, but it’s been okay,” senior Mia Valliquette said.

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