Head Coach: Jennifer Parker
Assistant Coaches: Kari Slindee
An unusual season began for the Blackduck Drakes on January 16th when Pequot Lake High School hosted the first tournament of the season in a virtual format. Competitions in 2021 will take place in a variety of formats, but each one is completely different from what the students have experienced in the past! The Pequot Lakes Tournament was run in a synchronous format with speakers performing live—but alone. A small number of speakers for Blackduck gathered at BHS on Saturday morning to set up their performance spaces. Each speaker must perform in a classroom of their own, not interacting face-to-face with others—but rather presenting their speeches in front of their computer cameras and microphones. On the other end, judges and other speakers can watch them, and of course, the local speakers can watch their competition as well. It was an interesting introduction to the season and the Drakes performed well. Haley Patel took 2nd place in Great Speeches, Regan Frenzel and Kaydre Gullette took 3rd in Duo, Preston Zanter placed 3rd in Drama. Earning a 4th place finish was Kaydre Gullette in Original Oratory. Ben Vezina placed 5th in Creative Expression, Bryce Frenzel took 7th place in Great Speeches, and Regan Frenzel came in in 8th place in Informative Speaking. This week’s tournament at Cass Lake-Bena High School is an asynchronous one, meaning that the BHS Speech Team has been busy all week making videos of their performances which the coaches then download to YouTube and link with the tournament registration so that judges can critique and ballot their rounds of competition by reviewing the videos. And this week there are many more speakers ready to perform as the team of 22 eventually heads for full-strength and the long season ahead!
Freshman Bryce Frenzel is the BHS Speech Team’s first Speaker of the Week for the 2021 competitive season. Even though he is new to speech, that didn’t stop Bryce from choosing one of the hardest divisions (Great Speeches) in which to compete and he placed 7th in his first tournament on January 15 th .