Speech & Debate Team Competes at State Finals

McLellan & Jallepalli Rank 5th in the State; Tam & Zusin Rank 4th in the State

Grace Condon, Clubs Editor, Junior

Over the weekend of April 24, the PMHS Forensic Speech team competed at the New York State Championships which was sponsored by Hofstra University. The competition was held online and more than 800 students from all over New York State competed in this virtual tournament. Students from PMHS who competed made it to quarterfinals, semifinals, and finals.

Quarterfinalists included sophomore Daniel Teleshevsky in Extemporaneous Speaking, sophomore Kirsten Agbenyega in Oral Interpretation, and senior Georgia Connolly in Oral Interpretation.

Freshman Spencer Conrad was a semifinalist in Congressional Debate.

The school boasted four state finalists: ther team of Vikram Jallepalli (senior) & Malia McLellan (junior) placed fifth in the state in the category of Duo Interpretation and juniors Oliver Tam & Aidan Zusin placed fourth in the state in the same category.

 “Getting to the state finals in speech for duo interpretation was insane! This year was my first on the speech team and it’s been such an enjoyable experience. It definitely was a bit intimidating considering it was my first go-around at this kind of thing but my partner and the other duo team that made it to the finals were super supportive and overall it was just a good time!” said Tam. 

“Twenty-five students qualified for the state championship, one of the biggest groups from Pelham since the speech team began. The fact that we had four students that made the finals was the icing on the cake,” said adviser Mr. Schleifer. 

The Forensic Speech team looks forward to preparing for the national championships, one which will be held in May, and the second one in June. The rest of the team looks forward to the coming season and making events in the future even more successful.