New Hampton Speech Team ready for state
Faith Erdman had been down this road before, but when she finished both her storytelling and prose pieces at the district individual speech contest last month, the New Hampton High School junior felt like she had finally broken through.
“I felt pretty confident,” she said, “but that’s the crazy thing about speech. It doesn’t really matter what I think, it matters what the judge thinks.”
But that good feeling became a reality, and on Saturday, she will be one of a dozen New Hampton students who will travel to Starmont High School to take part in the state speech contest.
New Hampton has plenty of state meet experience; after all, Celena Quirk, Cody Deere, Savannah Anderson, Will Thorndson, Grace Denner, Sydney Lau and Hannah Schwickerath all have qualified for the big contest in the past.
Among the “newcomers” are Isabel Pool and Jeffrey Reicks, who are both out for speech for the first time this year, and Elliot Throndson, who is a freshman in his first year competing at speech.
Erdman and Putney, though, are speech veterans making their first trip to state.
“I think, as a coach, to watch kids stick with it and then see their hard work pay off, that’s the best,” New Hampton coach Jason Speltz said. “I was happy for all our kids, but to see Faith and Quenten get to state, that was pretty special.”
Erdman, like her teammates, has put in plenty of hours since the district meet.
“You can’t just sit there and do the same thing you did at districts,” she said. “I know I have to get better, I know I need to take my judge’s comments from districts and incorporate them. I know it has to improve.”
Still, she’s pumped for Saturday.
But unlike some of her teammates, she won’t “talk to walls” at Starmont High; instead, the first time she does her pieces that day will be in front of the judges.
“That’s always been my thing,” she said and added with a laugh, “because if I run through it before, I might nail it and what good is that? I need to nail it in front of the judges.”
For more of this article, see Friday's Tribune.