PHS Forensics wraps up season at State Championships

Published 05/05/2024

Left to right: Lydia Walker, Jaidon Allen, Hallie Jerby, Harley Glynn, Audrey Belles, Hannah Kennedy, Callie Leidig, Kaitlyn Rothe, Jhett Johnson, Caydence Corman, James Kraushaar, Dayton Hugunin, Jaxon Glendening, and Layton Johnson

Fourteen members Phillipsburg High School forensics team headed to Maize High School on Saturday, May 5th, for this year’s KSHSAA State Championship tournament. Five of Phillipsburg’s entries earned a spot in semifinals, and one entry went the entire distance and qualified for the finals round. That entry consisted of the Improvised Duet Acting team of seniors Caydence Corman and Dayton Hugunin who went on to be crowned State Champions of that event.

“I’m so happy for Caydence and Dayton. They work so well together, and create hilarious characters and scenarios each time they perform. To see them end their forensics career as State Champions is really special, and I’m so proud of them,” Coach Kim Pakkebier said.

Out of the 36 3A teams competing at the tournament, Phillipsburg finished in 8th place as a team. Each member of the team contributed to that placing and helped represent Phillipsburg well at the tournament. “As with any State tournament, there are typically ups and downs throughout the day. Some didn’t end the day quite as they had hoped, but I’m really proud of all of our team for doing their best,” Pakkebier said.

The five entries qualifying for State semifinals included Jaxon Glendening who qualified in POI and Impromptu Speaking, Kaitlyn Rothe who qualified in Prose, Callie Leidig and Hannah Kennedy who qualified in Duet Acting, and Corman and Hugunin who qualified in IDA.

Other team members competing at State for Phillipsburg were Harley Glynn, Layton Johnson, Hallie Jerby, James Kraushaar, Jaidon Allen, Lydia Walker, and Jhett Johnson.

Senior Audrey Belles competed at the State Festival in the event of Extemp and received a “1” rating for her performance.

“State competition is the grand finale to our year. I think these students had a terrific forensics season overall and have so much to be proud of. We will definitely miss our seniors next year, but we have some outstanding talent returning for the future,” Pakkebier said.