Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Duo Team Quals for States, will Join Teammates in Mineola

February 20, 2010

Tayshawn Layton and Deborah Allen-Carr turned in a strong performance at the New York State Regional Qualifier and earned themselves a qualification for the State Championships, coming up in April.

Tayshawn and Deborah have already had a strong season, including a semifinal finish at the big-time Villiger tournament, but the goal of a state qualification had eluded them until now. The Regional tournament is an odd duck - three preliminary rounds, no final round and multiple judges in each round. The main goal of the tournament is to qualify deserving students for states and it's the only competition of the year to offer full qualifications for the State tournament.

Deborah and Tay took full advantage of this. Competing as a team in Duo Interpretation, they streaked through the tournament and were never ranked lower than 3rd - finishing in a tie for second place and leaving as state qualifiers.

Their teammates Norberto Troncoso, Sahirah Johnson, and Marissa Charlemagne also put in strong showings that showed clear progress in their work throughout the season, but they did not finish high enough to receive a qualification. They will have one more shot at achieving this goal at the so-called "last chance" tournament in March.

Deborah and Tayshawn's qualification puts the 09-10 Bronx Prep Speech Team over the top of the pace set by last year's squad. While the 08-09 team saw a semifinal and 2nd place finish at the State Championship, this year's squad has the potential to do even more damage. Chris Moncrief is qualified in Original Oratory, and now two Duo teams, Keegon Robinson and Tiffany McLarty and Deborah and Tayshawn, will be competing to be crowned New York States best.

Will more competitors at states lead to more hardware for the squad? Will the coveted New York State Championship plaque return to Bronx Prep after a nearly two-year hiatus? You'll find out right here, come April.

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