The Moraine Valley Community College Speech Team took home the gold from the Phi Rho Pi Region IV Speech and Debate regional tournament.
Gold medals were awarded to Damian Samsonowicz, of Bridgeview, for Communications Analysis; Natalie Jurcik, of Bridgeview, and Samsonowicz, for Duo Interpretation; James Smith, of Alsip, for Persuasive Speaking; team captain Haley Carrero, of Orland Park, for Prose Interpretation, and Stephanie McFann, of Oak Lawn, for Impromptu Speaking and Extemporaneous.
A gold medal also was earned for Interpretation Theater by Jurcik, Kye Baity, of Robbins; Ethan Gallant, of Chicago Ridge; and Jennifer Gutierrez, of Bridgeview.
“This team has put forth a tremendous effort this year,” said Coach John Nash. “It’s a combination of their dedication, work ethic and drive to be better communicators that lead to this first place finish. Whatever happens at the upcoming national tournament, they are already winners in my book—both in the competition and in life.”
In addition, Samsonowicz was the overall tournament top speaker winning the Cherry Cory Award. McFann tied for third place overall top speaker, and Gallant won sixth place overall top speaker.
Schools competing in the tournament, hosted at Moraine Valley, were from Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, Ohio, and Wisconsin.
The team will travel April 6, to Florida to compete in the national Phi Rho Pi Speech and Debate tournament.