Relationships Don’t Get in the Way of 107th Custer Competition

From+left%3A+Benjamin+Hardin%2C+Clate+Winters%2C+Andrew+Holcroft%2C+Jacob+Nichols%2C+and+Brandon+Stewart+took+a+selfie+during+the+107th+annual+Custer+Contest
From left: Benjamin Hardin, Clate Winters, Andrew Holcroft, Jacob Nichols, and Brandon Stewart took a selfie during the 107th annual Custer Contest

From left: Benjamin Hardin, Clate Winters, Andrew Holcroft, Jacob Nichols, and Brandon Stewart took a selfie during the 107th annual Custer Contest

From left: Benjamin Hardin, Clate Winters, Andrew Holcroft, Jacob Nichols, and Brandon Stewart took a selfie during the 107th annual Custer Contest

Grace Massie, Staff Writer

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Last Sunday, the 107th annual Custer Contest participants recited a series of eclectic monologues ranging from old war stories to excerpts of The Princess Bride. The students who participate in Custer Contests are the top students in the senior class who have attended MCHS all four years, and for the first time in MCHS Custer history, all of the participants were boys.

The boys who participated this year were Benjamin Hardin, Brandon Stewart, Andrew Holcroft, Clate Winters, and Jacob Nichols. Hardin came in first place with his performance of “The Euphio Question.” Stewart came in second with the sword fighting scene from The Princess Bride. Holcroft, Winters, and Nichols tied for third with performances of “Boy 30529: A Memoir,” “Ernie Pyle War Columns,” and The Catcher in the Rye, respectively.

The first place award was a $700 scholarship, second was $350, with $175 awarded to each contestant of equal rank.

While the competition was stiff, there were no hard feelings between any of the contestants. Nichols said, “I think the winners definitely deserved it; I think the places were pretty accurate.”

Leading up to the contest date, the boys were coached by mentors of their choosing. Holcroft commented that his mentor, Art and Theatre teacher Aaron Kelsey, gave some sage advice: “Well, somebody has to lose.”

Three out of the five contestants were theater students, so they could use the skills from acting and performance in their favor. They also shared this knowledge with Nichols and Winters who had never performed on stage.

“We helped Jacob and Clate with things like their stage presence since they aren’t a part of theater, like the square in the back is the center of the stage. Also I could see how much someone else would be moving around, and it would make me feel better about how I was moving around just as much. So it was a win-win,” Stewart said.

The boys would often joke around with each other as well to keep things lighthearted. “Clate made the suggestion before the competition that we should all agree to pull all of our award money and split it evenly,” Stewart mused.

Winters added, “Everyone was kind of okay with it at the time… except for Andy.”

Though the boys did not end up pooling their money, their camaraderie really showed on stage. At the end of the evening they even grouped up to take a selfie on stage.

While Hardin took home the first place prize, all of the boys came out of the event as winners.

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Relationships Don’t Get in the Way of 107th Custer Competition