• End of Season Awards 2018-2019

    Posted by Morgan Lobotzke on 4/10/2019 3:00:00 AM

    A few weekends ago, Woodcreek Speech and Debate held our annual Speech Showcase where we present this season's best and qualifying performances. At this event, new members are inducted into the National Speech and Debate Association with additional recognition for our soon-to-be graduating seniors and state qualifiers. At this event, there is also a presentation of four special awards from our coach, Melisa Elko. These are awards voted on by the team and include Rookie of the Year, Most Improved, Most Valuable Performer, and Speaker of the Year. 

    Rookie of the Year - This is an award to honor our first-year competitors who display: 

    1. Dedication to personal growth
    2. Consistently listened and LEARNED
    3. Won with humility/lost with dignity (sportsmanship)
    4. An all-around positive force on the team (promoter of team synergy)
    Our most admired newbie is...actually two competitors!…Riya Tapadiya and Feizah Teope

    Most Improved - This award goes to a competitor either new or returning who displays:

    1. Solid work ethic throughout ENTIRE season
    2. Measurable improvement/success
    3. High coach-ability
    4. Consistently capitalized on practice, during/after school
    5. Dedicated to personal growth.
    Our rising star is…Nathaniel Mills

    Most Valuable Performer - This honor is awarded to a competitor who displays:

    1. Consistent success at tournaments
    2. Exemplifies excellent conduct & professionalism
    3. Displays perseverance & dedication
    4. High coach-ability
    5. Positive force on/off stage (talented, helpful to others, authentic)
    6. Sportsmanship (dedicated to team improvement, not just personal improvement)
    7. Adventurous (fearless, attempts new things, committed to growth).
    Our super star is...Mark Mikityuk

    Speaker of the Year - This award is presented to a competitor who displays: 

    1. Work ethic during practice/after school
    2. Positive attitude – team player
    3. Helpful to others – team player/ natural leadership qualities
    4. Coach-ability
    5. Perseverance
    Although success at tournaments is important because it’s a reflection of the competitor’s hard work, it’s not necessarily a factor in deciding the recipient of this award. Success at this level means more than awards. It means never missing a chance to compete, always striving to be the best speaker s/he can possibly be, and ALWAYS representing the program in the best possible light.
    Our greatest mascot is…Morgan Lobotzke

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  • State Qualifying Tournaments 2019

    Posted by Morgan Lobotzke on 3/20/2019 12:00:00 PM

    Woodcreek’s S&D team spent the last two weekends competing for spots to the state championships, which are being held at CSU, Long Beach, May 3-5. In addition to our twelve state qualifiers, seniors Sophia Ceja, Robert Esty, and Savannah Rice received the President’s Award, which acknowledges four years of competing that includes one or more state qualifying pieces. Some of our qualifiers made it to state in more than one event. The underlined category is the one they are taking to championships.  


    State Qualifiers

    Mark Mikityuk, Expository speaking & Dramatic Interpretation

    Adithi Rao, Expository & Duo Interpretation

    Riya Tapadiya, Original Prose and Poetry & Duo Interpretation

    Feizah Teope, Original Prose and Poetry & Duo Interp

    Sophia Ceja, Original Prose and Poetry

    Jake Van Leerdam, Expository

    Morgan Lobotzke, Original Advocacy

    Emily Shearon, Dramatic Interpretation

    Justin Tejeda, Original Advocacy

    Rebecca Bendzick, Congress

    Savannah Rice, Parliamentary Debate

    Immanuel Lao, Parliamentary Debate


    Haley Burke, Oratorical Interpretation

    Aria High, Original Advocacy

    Helen Huang, Original Advocacy

    Nathaniel Mills, Expository speaking & Duo Interp

    Avien States, Original Oratory

    Joseph White, Original Prose & Poetry

    Nathanial Mills, Congress

    Amanda Simon, Congress

    Imene Smati, Congress


    Mark Mikityuk, Original Advocacy (triple qualified competitor, made it to out-rounds in all 3 events!)

    Sarrah Ayar, Duo Interpretation

    Dylan Deen, Original Prose and Poetry

    Sean Hellar, National Extemporaneous

    Tommy Hubbard, Humorous Interpretation & Parliamentary debate

    Morgan Lobotzke, Parliamentary debate

    Bhoojaa Jawahar, Expos

    Natalia Jovovich, Original Advocacy

    Kayleigh Porter, Original Advocacy

    Summer Sanoski, Duo Interp

    Emily Shearon, Original Advocacy

    Amanda Simon, Impromptu speaking & Original Advocacy

    Carson Sloan, Original Advocacy

    Frances Van Slyke, Original Oratory

    Imene Smati, Original Prose and Poetry & Dramatic Interp

    Kyler Strohmeyer, Original Oratory

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  • 2/2/19 - Speech at Oak Ridge HS

    Posted by Morgan Lobotzke on 2/4/2019 8:00:00 PM

    On Saturday, Feb. 2, at Oak Ridge HS, Woodcreek's speech team (varsity-only) competed in the last forensics tournament before qualifiers.  We earned 19 awards in eight individual speaking styles. This includes six 1st place trophies. If you know any of these students, please take a few seconds to congratulate/acknowledge them:


    Mark Mikityuk was triple entered and made it to finals in all three events.

                    3rd place, Expository speaking

                    2nd place, Original Advocacy

                    5th place, Dramatic Interp

    Adithi Rao was double entered making it to finals in both events.

    1st place, Expos speaking

    3rd place, Duo Interpretation

    Feizah Teope was also double entered making it to finals in both.

                    2nd place, Original Prose and Poetry

                    1st place, Duo Interp


    Additional Finalists

    Dylan Deen, 1st place, Original Prose and Poetry

    Cheyenne DeMille, 1st place, Program Oratorical Interpretation

    Helen Huang, 1st place, Original Advocacy

    Riya Tapadiya, 1st place, Duo Interpretation

    Sean Hellar, 2nd place, National Extemporaneous

    Jake Van Leerdam, 2nd place, Expository

    Toma Paskal, 3rd place, Duo Interp

    Sara Ayar, 6th place, Duo Interp

    Summer Sanoski, 6th place, Duo Interp

    Amanda Simon, 7th place, Impromptu speaking

    Imene Smati, 3rd place, Dramatic Interp

    Justin Tejeda, 4th place, Original Advocacy

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  • 12/8/18 - Speakers of the Tournament

    Posted by Morgan Lobotzke on 12/14/2018 7:00:00 PM

    This past Saturday Woodcreek’s speech and debate team competed at the last debate tournament of the fall season. Woodcreek performed exceptionally well, earning a grand total of 26 awards! One competitor, however, stood out among his teammates both during preparation for and at this tournament. This individual always displays an incredibly strong work ethic and positive attitude. He is always open to suggestions on how to improve his pieces and debate cases and is never afraid to venture outside the box. His awesome sense of humor never fails to lift up his teammates’ spirits. Ladies and gentlemen, it is my honor to announce Nathaniel Mills as 3rd block’s speaker of the tournament.

    Submitted by Natalia Jovovich, manager, block 3


    On Saturday, Dec. 8, Woodcreek competed in the last debate tournament of the fall season. Our team earned 26 awards, the most at any debate tournament this season! As always, the team votes for the Speaker of the Tournament. The person chosen for this event is someone who displays great work ethic, a positive attitude, and consistent sportsmanship before and during every competition, Dec. 8th being no exception. He displayed all of those characteristics, and then some by coaching several of our novice competitors to awards. In fact, every Public Forum debater he worked with went 3W-1L and he even helped one freshman team go undefeated! I'm proud to name Joseph White 4th block’s Speaker of the Tournament!

    Submitted by Tommy Hubbard, manager, block 4

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  • 12/8/18 - Debate at Davis Senior HS

    Posted by Morgan Lobotzke on 12/10/2018 6:00:00 PM

    On Saturday, Dec. 8, Woodcreek’s debate team competed in the last tournament of the fall season. This event included 19 schools and was hosted by Davis Senior HS. Please help us to congratulate our 26 award recipients.

    We end the fall season with 114 awards!

    Varsity Division


    Robert Esty & Tommy Hubbard, 3W-1L

    Savannah Rice & Immanuel Lao, 3W-1L

    Public Forum

    Myles Gilmer & Justin Tejeda, 3W-1L

    Congress (only style that runs elimination rounds - to make finals, competitors must rank in top 12 out of 53 competitors)

    Mark Mikityuk, Finalist, 2nd

    Rebecca Bendzick, Finalist, 3rd

    Morgan Lobotzke, Finalist, 7th

    Imene Smati, Finalist, 11th

    Novice Division

    Lincoln Douglas, 3W-1L

    Cole Awtrey

    Eric Bowen

    Gabe Huerta

    Nathaniel Mills

    Nathan Solano

    Feizah Teope

    Public Forum, 3W-1L

    Isaac Bacon Nevarez & Frances Van Slyke, undefeated

    Bhoojaa Jawahar & Alina Yakovenko

    Julia Barton & Olga Yashlavskiy

    Avien States & Dana Hall

    Abbie Goetzel & Dylan Hall

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  • 11/10/18 - Speakers of the Tournament

    Posted by Morgan Lobotzke on 11/16/2018 3:00:00 PM

    This past Saturday, our incredible team competed at the season’s second speech tournament at Antelope High School. Despite the poor air quality, we still took home 27 awards, with seven first-place wins! Nevertheless, one competitor went beyond for this tournament. This person never fails to try his hand at a multitude of different events, always doing his best in each performance. Moreover, his hectic schedule never stops him from making time for others. In fact, there was probably only one day within the past two weeks leading up to this tournament where he worked on his own pieces; most days were selflessly dedicated to helping others. Regardless, he still manages to break to finals at every event. I am so proud of this competitor, with his admirable skills in speech and debate and his natural ability to lead. It is an honor to announce that third block’s Speaker of the Tournament is none other than the talented competitor and selfless mentor, Sean Hellar!

    Submitted by Morgan Lobotzke, captain, block 3


    On Nov. 10 at Antelope HS, our speech and debate team competed at the second speech tournament of the season. It was a very long and smoky day, but everyone stayed positive and maintained a good attitude despite the weather. One individual, in particular, stood out not only during the challenging air quality but during the weeks leading up to the event. Despite being extremely busy in all kinds of pursuits, she shows up to class with a big smile on her face each and every day. Her abundance of enthusiasm and happiness is greatly appreciated and felt by all. She regularly ventures outside her comfort zone by trying new events, she is extremely talented and inspirational, and she is a fantastic role model to her teammates. I am proud to present Emily Shearon as the Speaker of the Tournament!

    Submitted by Tommy Hubbard, manager, block 4

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  • 11/10/18 - Speech at Antelope HS

    Posted by Morgan Lobotzke on 11/12/2018 9:00:00 PM

    On Nov. 10, at Antelope HS, Woodcreek's forensics team competed in the last speech event for the fall season. It was a sizable tournament with 17 schools & roughly 300 competitors. We earned 27 awards, including 6 first place trophies, 15 top three placements, and several of our double/triple-entered competitors moved to finals in all their events. Our prose and poetry performers continue to dominate this very popular platform, taking four of the seven spots in finals. We did the same in Original Oratory. We also swept Dramatic Interpretation (novice division) by taking first, second, & third:

    Original Advocacy

    Justin Tejeda, 1st place

    Mark Mikityuk, 3rd place  

    Morgan Lobotzke, 4th place

    Expository Speaking

    Mark Mikityuk, 2nd place

    Jake Van Leerdam, 3rd place

    Bhoojaa Jawahar, 5th place

    Original Prose & Poetry

    Feizah Teope, 1st place

    Joseph White, 3rd place

    Imene Smati, 4th place

    Rebecca Bendzick, 7th place 

    Program Oral Interpretation

    Cheyenne Demille, 2nd place 

    Original Oratory

    Myles Gilmer, 1st place

    Sean Hellar, 2nd place

    Rebecca Bendzick, 5th place

    Alexander Tran, 6th place

    DUO Interp (N)

    Toma Paskal & Adithi Rao, 1st place

    Riya Tapadiya & Feizah Teope, 2nd place

    Summer Sanoski & Sarrah Ayar, 4th place

    Oratorical Interp (N)

    Dylan Hall, 2nd place

    Dramatic Interp

    Mark Mikityuk, 5th place

    Myles Gilmer, 1st place (N)

    Emily Shearon, 2nd place (N)

    Nathaniel Mills, 3rd place (N)

    National Extemp

    Sean Hellar, 6th place

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  • 10/20/18 - Speakers of the Tournament

    Posted by Morgan Lobotzke on 10/26/2018 6:00:00 PM

    This past weekend the speech and debate team competed at the Mira Loma High School debate tournament. The team did a phenomenal job dedicating long hours of hard work. Even though team members gave it their all, one stood out above the rest. This person proved to be unbelievably selfless the weeks leading up to the tournament, always helping wherever he could even outside his own debate style. His work ethic, unique perspective, and generous assistance inspire the entire team to perform their best. I am beyond proud to announce 3rd block’s Speaker of the Tournament to be none other than Immanuel Lao.

    Submitted by Sean Hellar, manager, block 3


    Last Saturday we competed at our 2nd debate tournament of the year, the Satyaprit Classic at Mira Loma High School, where we earned 15 awards. Despite the stress from back to back tournaments the team as a whole had a tremendous showing but one student, in particular, stood out far above the rest. This first-year competitor and freshman persevered at this competition by dominating all four of his rounds. Though he has some big shoes to fill as the fourth person in his family to compete on Woodcreek’s S&D team, I have faith his work ethic and determination will help him to do this with ease. Now presenting 4th block’s speaker of the tournament, Nathan Solano.

     Submitted by Ben Santiago-Kemp, manager, block 4

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  • 10/20/18 - Debate at Mira Loma HS

    Posted by Morgan Lobotzke on 10/23/2018 12:00:00 PM

    The Woodcreek Speech and Debate team has had quite a busy month. Not only did we host the speech opener on Saturday, Oct. 13, but our team also competed the very next weekend! We competed against 17 schools at the Satyaprit Debate Classic at Mira Loma HS. Here, we competed in 4 styles of debate and moved to finals in all of them. Our team won 15 awards at this tournament! 


    Nathan Solano undefeated

    Erik Bowen 3W–1L

    Riya Tapadiya 3W-1L


    Adithi Rao & Cheyenne Demille 3W-1L

    Myles Gilmer & Joseph White 3W-1L


    Sean Hellar & Aria High 3W-1L


    Mark Mikityuk, Amanda Simon, Rebecca Bendzick, Carson Sloan, Helen Huang, Emily Sheeron

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  • 10/13/18 - Speakers of the Tournament

    Posted by Morgan Lobotzke on 10/19/2018 6:00:00 PM

    Last Saturday, we competed at the season’s speech opener at our home field of Woodcreek High School. Despite having to take on the stress of hosting the tournament, our team brought home 31 awards! While every competitor worked tremendously hard for this tournament, one student in particular stands out. This student showed one of the strongest work ethics this team has ever seen. She worked hard day and night to perfect her piece and to be ready for tournament. Her main goal, however, was not to take first, but rather to make her team proud - which she absolutely did. This student not only did extremely well at tournament, but was humble and focused on praising her competitors and other teammates. Her humility along with the loving, empathetic heart she has is beyond admirable, and is something widely valued on this team. This student is always extremely coachable, takes criticism very well, and is consistently one of the most prepared. Her gratitude, effort, and dedication are just a few of the many reasons I am so proud to be her mentor, and why 3rd block’s Speaker of the Tournament is Feizah Teope!!!

    Submitted by Morgan Lobotzke, captain, block 3


    This past Saturday, Woodcreek opened and hosted the first speech tournament of the season. After each competition, the entirety of the Speech and Debate team votes and chooses a member to hold the honor of Speaker of the Tournament. This award goes out to someone who has shown dedication to her craft, she continues to display a great work ethic thus far in the season, and overall, she has an amazing attitude towards the team and towards her competitors. I’m very impressed with her on so many levels. She constantly worked on her piece, helped others, and was easily coachable. Her positivity and drive to become a better performer is inspiring to all. I present and congratulate Frances Van Slyke as 4th block’s Speaker of the Tournament!

     Submitted by Tommy Hubbard, manager, block 4

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