Forensics Team Season Starts Strong

Tucker Ashburn, News Writer

The Wayne State College Forensics team has started their season with some success in their second season since reinstatement in 2021, originally starting with eight members, the 2022-23 season showed a significant growth on the team, which is now at 20 members.   

The team had three entries in their first meet of the season, The Bulldog Tournament, hosted by Concordia University with two of those events breaking into finals. Colin Hain placed sixth in the Program Oral Interpretation, and the team of Kirsten Fike and Brayden Almgren bringing home first place in the Duo Interpretation.   

Jadyn Burenheide placed fourth in Extemporaneous Speaking and Kiley Bierman placed sixth in Extemporaneous Speaking in the Sunflower Swing Asynchronous meet Saturday, Oct. 8, hosted by Bethel College in North Newton Kansas.  

“Our season starts the minute school starts,” Coach Jonathan Laner said. “Each student meets with me and looks at the description of events and finds a topic or theme that interests the student and build speeches or programs based on those topics.” 

Laner said that the addition of new members has allowed the team to accomplish more. 

“Last year was our first year having a competitive team in 10 years, we started the season with 8 students and by Spring 2022 we were up to 13,” Laner said. “[A total of] 11 of those 13 students qualified to attend the NFA National Tournament held at Illinois State in April. At the National Tournament, 3 events broke into octafinals, the top 48 in the nation. Those events were the Duo teams of Kirsten Fike and Brayden Almgren and Kaylee Koch and Dylan Dendinger. The other event that broke into octafinals was then freshman, Addie Hejl in Dramatic Interpretation.”  

Laner said that Hain stood out to him the most. 

“Last year he placed at nationals, he was the fourth-place novice persuasive speaker in the country, he’s off to a really good start,” Laner said. 

WSC will host the Wildcat Whisper Speech Meet Oct. 14-15 in Connell Hall where schools across the Midwest will come to compete in multiple different categories.