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MHS senior wins event at state tournament

The Mitchell High School Speech and Debate team had a strong showing at the state tournament over the weekend, with two competitors bringing home first-place honors in their respective events.

The Mitchell High School Speech and Debate team had a strong showing at the state tournament over the weekend, with two competitors bringing home first-place honors in their respective events.

Senior Ryan Solberg was crowned the state champion in Domestic Extemp, and junior Raina Grimsley placed first in Original Oratory at the State Speech and Debate Tournament in Aberdeen on Friday and Saturday. Coach Ron Grimsley said Solberg's win marked the fifth year in a row that a Mitchell student has been named state champion in Domestic Extemp, and the second consecutive year Solberg has won the event.

The first MHS state champion was named in 1945, and the two first-place finishes are the 15th and 16th championships in school history.

"This weekend went really well for us and we accomplished a few goals we had set. Over the years (Solberg) had an awful lot of success, and he's placed at a lot of tournaments this year," Grimsley said. "He was kind of the favorite going into the tournament to win that division, I think."

At last year's state competition, Raina Grimsley placed third in the Original Oratory category, and her coach Ron Grimsley, who is also her father, said she has worked tirelessly in the past year to improve her performance.

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"She had very sound results, too, over the year and had been to the state tournament before, so that helped her," Grimsley said.

The weekend's tournament brought the MHS speech and debate season to a close, and, while he's sad to see another year pass, Grimsley said it will be one worthy of looking back on.

"This year was one of the steadiest since I've been coaching as far as consistency goes," Grimsley said. "In our room, we have a spot where we usually place our trophies and awards and they didn't all fit there this year, so that's a good sign."

Looking toward the future, Grimsley said the makeup of the team will change, with the loss of three seniors who did "very well over the years."

"We're sad to see them go, but there's a good group coming up. So, as always, people will have to step up, and I'm sure they'll do just that."

Other Mitchell competitors included:

• Eric Beck: Public Forum Debate, Domestic Extemp.

• Madison Hetland: Public Forum Debate, Original Oratory.

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• Destiny Pinder-Buckley: Lincoln-Douglas Debate, Foreign Extemp.

• Matthew Beynon: Lincoln-Douglas Debate, Foreign Extemp.

• McKenzie Norton: Policy Debate.

• Angela Baker: Policy Debate.

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