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Great Performances Carry Chargers to Best Finish of the Season

posted Feb 16, 2016, 12:18 PM by Barry Holloway   [ updated Aug 18, 2016, 1:32 PM ]
Article by Kate Sabol
Photo by Emma O'Neill

West Bend, WI--The West Bend East Invite this past weekend brought about many great accomplishments for the Hamilton Forensics team as a whole, as well as for individual members. Hamilton’s team finished 6th out of 32 teams and had seven entries move onto power rounds. 

The Hamilton team also celebrated as a few members powered for the first time in their careers. This includes the pair of Andy O’Neill (senior) and Emma O’Neill (sophomore); they placed second in the play acting category at West Bend East. When asked about how it felt to power for the first time, Andy O’Neill commented, “The mixture of emotions are starting with happy and ending with ecstatic. This is just awesome. I have never powered before, and let’s just say I was lost for words for a moment there.” His sister, Emma O’Neill shared similar emotions, saying “I could not wipe a smile off of my face for the life of me. I was so so excited.” Both looked forward to future meets, and the prospective success in store for them. Emma gave some insight into their plans for the future, saying, “Looking at judges comments we see that we need to work on some transitions and minor details, but I really think we do well at improvising if we make a mistake."





Jordan Koeller Carrying Matt Gnanadass

Sophomore, Amy Yadev also powered for her first time and placed second in the four minute speaking category. When asked how it felt to power, she remarked, “It felt really great. I never expected it, which made it that much better. All of my hard work payed off.” Amy hopes to continue to power and improve in the future, stating, “I have really great coaches to help [me] and great teammates. I think that’s a big part of it as well.” She commented on some of her strengths and weaknesses, saying, “I think I do well in consistency; I get around the same time and I think my speech is well written. I could work on eye contact and hand gestures and little picky things like that.” She looks forward to being able to continue to improve at future meets this season.


The pair of Samantha Moore (senior) and Erin Moore (junior) powered in the duo interp category; they placed first in this category for the second week in a row. Dani Kallis (senior) has now powered at 15 consecutive meets; this past weekend she placed second in special occasion speaking.Additionally, sophomore Matthew Gnanadass has advanced to the finals round in extemporaneous speaking at all three meets this season. He placed third at the West Bend East Invite. Lexi Detweiler (senior) was also a finalist in extemporaneous speaking this past weekend. The pair of Emily Keith and Kavya Ayalasomayajula, both juniors, were finalists in the play acting category.


Overall Hamilton Forensics was extremely successful at the West Bend East Invite. Similar to the other meets so far this season, personal and team records were met and broken; the team looks forward to continuing its success and growing this season at future meets to come. With a weekend off before the next meet at UW-Whitewater, members actively work to improve their pieces in this extra time to be able to dominate in Whitewater.


Click here for Andy O'Neill's post-meet interview

--The 230 points scored by the Chargers is just a point shy of their best performance at a meet in the last five years. 

--Entries averaged 10 points per round, which is the best average by the team in the last five years.

--Dani Kallis has extended her incredible record of advancing to finals; she has now made it to finals in 15 straight meets.

--After only making it to the finals once last season, extemp speaker, Matthew Gnanadass, has advanced to the finals in his first three meets this season.

--The O’Neills, Yadev, and Detweiler powered at a meet for the first time in their careers.

--This is the second week in a row that the duo team of Magoon/Moore has placed 1st.

--23 students participated in the meet this weekend.