Southeast junior Will Chrysler was named the 3A State Champion in Lincoln-Douglas Debate at the 3A KSHSAA State Championship Tournament in Wichita on May 1-2. Will became the second student at Southeast to be named state champion.
Competing in his first year of Lincoln-Douglas Debate, Will entered the state tournament having medaled in two previous tournaments. At the state tournament, Will lost only one debate round. His win/loss record in preliminary competition earned him a spot in semifinals as the second seed where he was matched against a debater from Silver Lake. After a dominating 3-0 win in semifinals, Will advanced to finals and debated against the only undefeated debater at the tournament. Will won the round on a 2-1 decision, and was named state champion.
As a squad, the Southeast Forensics Team qualified 12 entries for the state tournament, surpassing the 11 entries that qualified for last year’s tournament. Senior Aubrey Colvin, competing in her first year of forensics, qualified for state in Serious Solo Acting. At the state tournament, Aubrey advanced to semifinals where she ended in 7th place. Kim Collins, a four-year senior, broke to semifinals in Extemporaneous Speaking and finished in 8th place. Kim’s season isn’t over, however, as she will be competing at the national tournament this summer in Dallas. Junior Ashleigh Fleck qualified for state in two events—Extemporaneous Speaking and Original Oration. She advanced to semifinals in Oration, ending up in 8th place. She advanced all the way to finals in Extemporaneous Speaking, placing 6th in the state in that event. She will continue her forensics season this summer at nationals, as well.
Without a doubt, being named a state champion is one of the biggest accomplishments anybody could hope for. I’m not sure what Will’s expectations were going into the tournament, but judging by his reaction when I told him he won, I’m guessing the thought of being state champion hadn’t really crossed his mind. He is a perfect fit for an event like Lincoln-Douglas Debate. I’m glad he got this opportunity, and he and I are already looking forward to next year.
The Southeast High School Debate and Forensics Team hosts its annual showcase and awards night Tuesday, May 12. The showcase, which is open to the public, begins at 6:00. For more information, contact Gary Leiker at the high school at 457-8365 or via email at email@example.com.