2018 Team & Results
DHS 4n6 "Capitalizes" on winning season in DC

(WASHINGTON, DC)  The Danville High School Forensics Team competed at the 67th Annual National Catholic Forensic League's National Tournament May 26 and 27 in Washington, DC. Over 2700 students from 558 American high schools, the winners of 66 diocesan tournaments held around the US, converged on the capital city to compete in four preliminary rounds and four awards rounds for the national titles. Danville's Emma Merryman advanced through approximately 250 competitors in Oratory to advance into the second award round, the National Quarterfinals (top 24) before being eliminated. Additionally, Danville's other four entries all placed in the top third of all entries in the contest though not in the awards rounds. The team members who advanced to the national contest -- Merryman, Joseth Warner, Claire Strysick, Britton Minks, Barrett Minks, Haley Hopkins, and Katie Critchfield -- were able to see sights of the nation's capital the day prior to the contest.

Danville High School competed at the University of Kentucky Speech Tournament of Champions for the first time since its inception in 2012 April 28-30. Four students competed in six events, and DHS advanced three entries to awards rounds. Natalie Grubbs moved through six rounds to the tournament finals, placing sixth overall in Oral Interpretation. Claire Strysick was in Informative Speaking semifinals; Charlie Hall made Humorous Interpretation quarterfinals.


Senior Caroline Bugg led the Speaking Admirals at the Kentucky District tournament of the National Speech and Debate Association held at Centre College and the Danville campus of Bluegrass Community and Technical College March 16-17. Bugg won the House of Representatives and placed fifth overall in United States Extemporaneous Speaking. She chose to advance to Nationals in USX. Also placing in the final rounds at the contest were in Dramatic Interpretation, Joseth Warner (third) and Natalie Grubbs (fifth); in Duo Interpretation, the team of Haley Hopkins and Joseth Warner (fifth); in Humorous Interpretation, Charlie Hall (third); in International Extemporaneous Speaking, Katie Critchfield (fifth); in Oratory, Charlie Hall (sixth). Also advancing out of preliminary rounds were Virginia Harp and Samantha Sallee (Duo Interpretation), Haley Hopkins (Humorous Interpretation), Natalie Grubbs (Informative Speaking), Barrett Minks and Lina Morales (Dramatic Interpretation), Paige Glasser (Program Oral Interpretation), Katie Critchfield (House of Representatives and United States Extemporaneous Speaking), and Becky Mohr (Oratory). Danville placed 2nd overall in Speech and 2nd overall in Congress.


Danville High School won the 2018 Kentucky High School Speech League’s annual senior high school speech tournament on Saturday, its third straight. Students competed in fourteen speaking categories in three preliminary rounds Friday (3/9) with the top 12 (Semifinalists) or top 24 (Quarterfinalists) advancing into Saturday rounds (the number of entries determined if each category held Quarterfinals or not). The best six performers in Semifinals advanced on to the state Finals.

DHS won KHSSL State by a narrow five points over Lexington Dunbar, reversing the two schools’ placings at the KESDA Senior Forum two weeks prior. Lexington Henry Clay was third, making it a clean sweep of the top three places for the Bluegrass Region, one of seven geographic Regions in the Kentucky High School Speech League. Bardstown Bethlehem, Rowan County, North Oldham, Boone County, Cooper, Murray, and Beechwood rounded out the top ten schools at State.

Thirty-one of Danville’s forty-two entries to the state tournament advanced out of preliminary rounds into the awards rounds, including fourteen Finalists in the top six: Sara Barringer and Kelsie Steber (third Duo Interpretation), Sara Barringer (sixth Storytelling), Caroline Bugg (fourth Impromptu Speaking), Natalie Grubbs (third Informative Speaking, third Prose), Charlie Hall (second Humorous Interpretation, third Oratory, third Storytelling), Emma Merryman (sixth Broadcasting, fifth Informative Speaking), Becky Mohr (sixth Impromptu Speaking), Summer Quinn (sixth Declamation), and Claire Strysick (second Informative Speaking, second Oratory).

Advancing to Semifinals (top 12) in their events were Katie Critchfield (Extemporaneous Speaking), Evey Kinkade (Broadcasting), Haley Hopkins and Joseth Warner (Duo Interpretation, Improvisational Duo), Becky Mohr (Oratory), Eleanor Tubb (Extemporaneous Speaking), and Joseth Warner (Dramatic Interpretation).

Quarterfinalists from DHS (top 24) were Paige Glasser and Libby Hale (Improvisational Duo), Paige Glasser (Poetry and Program Oral Interpretation), Caroline Graves (Humorous Interpretation), Natalie Grubbs (Poetry), Jenna Haines (Storytelling), Haley Hopkins (Humorous Interpretation), Emma Merryman (Impromptu Speaking), Summer Quinn (Broadcasting), and Samantha Sallee (Declamation).

DHS has won the state title three straight years with five additional wins 2006-2009 plus 2012. The team’s win is notable this year as despite having no state champions this year, the squad did well enough overall to accumulate a winning total of points. Also notable is the leadership provided by assistant coaches Beth Marlowe and Maggie Jenkins, who ran the team while head coach Steve Meadows was out with a back injury for several weeks in January and February. In addition to these three coaches, Terri Branson, Christel Belcher, Logan Scisco, John Thompson, and Hibah Siddiqui prepared the Speaking Admirals for State.

On March 8 and 9, four members of Danville High School's forensics team competed in the Kentucky High School Speech League's State Debate tournament. DHS entered only the Congressional Debate category and advanced three students past six hours of preliminary rounds into Supers. Caroline Bugg earned second place overall in the contest while fellow senior Becky Mohr placed fifth. Junior Katie Critchfield also advanced into the Supers.

Danville sends 8 to Washington for CFL National Speech Tournament

Danville High School qualified six entries and eight students to the Catholic Forensic League Grand National Speech Tournament to be held in Washington, DC, over Memorial Day weekend. Students earned their spots at Nats by placing in the top six in their respective events at the Louisville Diocese tournament (covering all of Kentucky) March 3. The team placed third overall behind Bethlehem and LaRue County with Murray and North Oldham fourth and fifth.  Senior Caroline Bugg led the team with a first place finish in Extemporaneous Speaking. Also advancing to DC are Katie Critchfield (Extemporaneous Speaking), Claire Strysick (Oratory), Emma Merryman (Oratory), and the Duo Interpretation teams of Haley Hopkins and Joseth Warner plus Barrett Minks and Britton Minks. 


Danville High School placed 2nd overall at the annual Kentucky Educational Speech and Drama Association (KESDA) Forum February 22-24. Lexington Dunbar was named KESDA Champion team with Rowan County third, Bowling Green fourth, and Boone County fifth overall. Dixie Heights won Small Schools with Dunbar taking Team Efficiency. Students competed in eighteen contests over three days in Lexington. 

Sixteen DHS entries advanced to the final rounds (or top 6) to win the major awards at the contest: Caroline Bugg (2nd Congressional Debate, 2nd Extemporaneous Speaking, 5th Impromptu Speaking), Katie Critchfield (3rd Congressional Debate), Paige Glasser (6th Poetry), Charlie Hall (Champion, Humorous Interpretation), Emma Merryman (3rd Impromptu Speaking), Summer Quinn (6th Declamation), Claire Strysick (2nd Informative Speaking, 5th Oratory), Joseth Warner (3rd Dramatic Interpretation), Virginia Harp and Samantha Sallee (4th Duo Interpretation), Sara Barringer and Kelsie Steber (5th Duo Interpretation), Haley Hopkins and Joseth Warner (6th Duo Interpretation), and Charlie Hall and Barrett Minks (Champions, Duo Improvisation). The Group Interpretation entry of Libby Hale, Virginia Harp, Evey Kinkade, Samantha Sallee, and Claire Strysick placed third overall. Natalie Grubbs and Joseth Warner (Prose) and Emma Merryman (Broadcasting) were also recognized as Finalists at the event.

Additionally, many Danville entries advanced past preliminary rounds to Semifinals (top 12) or Quarterfinals (top 24) in their respective events: Sara Barringer (Informative Speaking Semis, Prose Quarters, Storytelling Semis), Katie Critchfield (Extemporaneous Speaking Semis), Caroline Graves (Humorous Interpretation Semis), Natalie Grubbs (Informative Speaking Semis), Libby Hale (Prose Quarters), Charlie Hall (Broadcasting Semis and Oratory Semis), Virginia Harp (Declamation Semis), Emma Merryman (Informative Speaking Semis), Barrett Minks (Dramatic Interpretation Semis), Becky Mohr (Super Session of Congress, Impromptu Speaking Semis, Oratory Semis), Summer Quinn (Broadcasting Quarters), Samantha Sallee (Declamation Semis), Claire Strysick (Dramatic Interpretation Semis and Impromptu Speaking Semis), the Improvisational Duo teams of Paige Glasser/Libby Hale and Haley Hopkins/Joseth Warner (Semis), and the Duo Interpretation team of Barrett Minks and Britton Minks (Semis). Freshmen Eleanor Tubb (Extemporaneous Speaking) and the Duo Interpretation team of Megan Goosey and Jenna Haines were also recognized as the Outstanding Novices in their events at the meet.

Danville High School won the Bluegrass Regional Tournament of the Kentucky High School Speech League held at SCAPA Bluegrass Middle School Saturday. Lexington Henry Clay was second; Lexington Dunbar was third. The Bluegrass Region consists of Fayette County and the thirty-five counties directly south of it.
Students competed in fourteen speech events. Regional Champions and Runners Up were named in each event with half the Region's honors going to DHS entries including seven Regional Champions. Junior Captain Charlie Hall led the team with Regional Championships in Humorous Interpretation, Oratory (defending state champion), and Storytelling. Also winning Regional Championships were Sara Barringer and Kelsie Steber (Duo Interpretation), Caroline Bugg (Extemporaneous Speaking), Becky Mohr (Impromptu Speaking), and Haley Hopkins and Joseth Warner (Improvisational Duo). Regional Runners Up were Summer Quinn (Broadcasting), Joseth Warner (Dramatic Interpretation), Haley Hopkins and Joseth Warner (Duo Interpretation), Emma Merryman (Impromptu Speaking -- defending state champion),  Lina Morales (Poetry), Libby Hale (Program Oral Interpretation), and Natalie Grubbs (Prose).   


Danville High School placed first of 25 schools competing in the Trinity North Oldham Classic speech tournament held at Trinity High School in Louisville on Saturday. Lexington Henry Clay (second), Bardstown Bethlehem (third), Lexington Dunbar (fourth) and Boone County (fifth) were next in the team sweepstakes. The contest, jointly sponsored by the teams at Trinity and North Oldham, was the largest the team attended this year and ends the invitational tournament season. DHS competes next at the Kentucky High School Speech League’s Bluegrass Regional Tournament on February 3 before heading into the state contest season.

DHS won twenty individual awards at the meet including championships in Duo Interpretation, Extemporaneous Speaking, and Humorous Interpretation. Bringing home hardware for the Speaking Admirals: Sara Barringer (first Duo Interpretation), Caroline Bugg (first Extemporaneous Speaking, third Impromptu Speaking), Katie Critchfield (second Extemporaneous Speaking), Paige Glasser (sixth Program Oral Interpretation), Natalie Grubbs (fourth Poetry, second Prose), Charlie Hall (first Humorous Interpretation), Virginia Harp (sixth Duo Interpretation), Haley Hopkins (fourth Duo Interpretation, sixth Humorous Interpretation, second Improvisational Duo), Evey Kinkade (third Broadcasting), Emma Merryman (fifth Impromptu Speaking), Barrett Minks (second Duo Interpretation), Britton Minks (second Duo Interpretation), Becky Mohr (second Impromptu Speaking), Summer Quinn (second Broadcasting), Samantha Sallee (seventh Declamation, sixth Duo Interpretation), Kelsie Steber (first Duo Interpretation), Claire Strysick (sixth Dramatic Interpretation, fourth Informative Speaking), Joseth Warner (fourth Duo Interpretation, second Improvisational Duo).


Danville High School’s forensics team brought home 22 awards including tournament champions in Extemporaneous Speaking and Storytelling, placing second overall as a team behind Lexington Henry Clay. Bardstown Bethlehem, Bowling Green, LaRue County, and Knott County Central rounded out the top six schools attending (of 12).

Juniors Katie Critchfield (Extemporaneous Speaking) and Charlie Hall (Storytelling) led the team with championships in their events. Additionally, Hall placed in Oratory and Humorous Interpretation. Other tournament award winners were Samantha Sallee (fourth Declamation), Joseth Warner (fifth Dramatic Interpretation), Caroline Bugg (second Extemporaneous Speaking and second Impromptu Speaking), Haley Hopkins (fifth Humorous Interpretation), Emma Merryman (fifth Impromptu Speaking and second Informative Speaking), Becky Mohr (third Impromptu Speaking and fourth Oratory), Natalie Grubbs (sixth Informative Speaking), Claire Strysick (third Informative Speaking), Kyle Dean (fifth Poetry), Paige Glasser (fifth Program Oral Interpretation), Sara Barringer (second Storytelling), and the teams of Haley Hopkins and Joseth Warner (second Duo Interpretation and fourth Improvisational Duo), Sara Barringer and Kelsie Steber (third Duo Interpretation), and Virginia Harp and Samantha Sallee (fourth Duo Interpretation).  


Danville High School placed first of twenty-six schools from nine states at the Western Kentucky University Hilltopper Speech Tournament on Saturday, December 9. The victory was especially sweet after three consecutive years of being that tournament’s runner-up. Bardstown Bethlehem was a close second with 114 points behind Danville’s 120; Rowan County was third, Ravenwood (TN) fourth, and Huntington (WV) fifth.

Twelve DHS entries advanced through three large preliminary rounds to compete in the final round for the top six awards in each event. Earning honors for the Speaking Admirals were Emma Merryman (second Impromptu and fourth Informative), Haley Hopkins and Joseth Warner (second Duo Interpretation), Sara Barringer (third Storytelling), Becky Mohr (fourth Oratory and fifth Impromptu), Samantha Sallee (fourth Declamation), Charlie Hall (fifth Storytelling), Natalie Grubbs (fifth Prose), Sara Barringer and Kelsie Steber (fifth Duo Interpretation), Joseth Warner (sixth Dramatic Interpretation), and Virginia Harp and Samantha Sallee (sixth Duo Interpretation). The largest two events, Prose and Poetry, included a Semifinal round between Prelims and Finals.  Danville’s Lina Morales (Poetry) and Libby Hale (Prose) advanced into Semis but not Finals.


DHS previously took honors this season at the Dunbar Fall Classic November 11 with a third place finish behind Henry Clay and Bethlehem, winning awards in Declamation (Summer Quinn, second); Dramatic Interpretation (Joseth Warner, fourth); Duo Interpretation (Haley Hopkins and Joseth Warner, first; Virginia Harp and Samantha Sallee, fourth); Extemporaneous Speaking (Caroline Bugg, third);  Impromptu Speaking (Emma Merryman, third; Caroline Bugg, fourth); Improvisational Duo (Haley Hopkins and Joseth Warner, first); Informative Speaking (Emma Merryman, first; Claire Strysick, fourth); and Storytelling (Charlie Hall, first; Sara Barringer, second).


At the LaRue County Ruth Blair Invitational November 4, returning members of the Speaking Admirals (no rookies) placed fourth overall with thirteen awards after three preliminary rounds. Tournament Champions Joseth Warner (Dramatic), Charlie Hall (Humorous), and Becky Mohr (Impromptu) were joined by Samantha Sallee (fourth Declamation), Haley Hopkins and Joseth Warner (fourth Duo Interpretation), Virginia Harp and Samantha Sallee (fifth Duo Interpretation), Katie Critchfield (sixth Extemporaneous), Haley Hopkins (sixth Humorous), Emma Merryman (fifth Impromptu and fourth Informative), Natalie Grubbs (third Informative), Becky Mohr (fourth Oratory), and Charlie Hall (fourth Storytelling) in the awards rounds.