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Lafayette Forensics Society capped its regular season with a strong finish last weekend, winning Lincoln-Douglas debate and taking third place in individual events at a 13-team tournament hosted by Nassau Community College in East Meadow, N.Y.

Sophomore Erik Heins of Center Moriches, N.Y., led the team with first place finishes in extemporaneous and impromptu speech, as well as making the semifinals of debate. Paul Kritzler, a sophomore history major from Monkton, Md., was a quarterfinalist in debate, while Jeremy Bennett, a neuroscience major from Riverside, Pa., was a semifinalist. First-year student Kimberly Moore of Sandy, Utah, earned third place in both after-dinner speaking and extemporaneous speech, also competing in impromptu speech and debate. First-year student Sandra Welch of Philadelphia, Pa., competed in Lincoln-Douglas debate and prose reading.

“We did very well as a team, especially in debate,” says Moore. “The team is made up of a really great group of people.”

The students were accompanied by debate coach Jon Honiball and Scott Placke, director of forensics.

Forensics Society will enter its final competition of the school year next month at the National Forensics Association’s national tournament, hosted by Ball State University in Muncie, Ind.

Two weekends ago, first-year student Joe Borland of Wilkes-Barre, Pa., won a national championship in extemporaneous speech and placed second in impromptu speech at the 21st annual Novice National Forensics Tournament. He spearheaded an outstanding team effort for Forensics Society, which finished second in its bracket despite entering only three competitors in the tournament. Held at Cameron College in Lawton, Okla., the event included 27 teams from colleges and universities around the nation.

Forensics Society took second place at the Pennsylvania State Forensics Association’s State Championship Tournament Feb. 15-16 at Wilkes University in Wilkes-Barre, Pa.

The team got off to a strong start this season as a group of nine first-year students earned the top three places in extemporaneous speech, scored the top two honors in impromptu speech, and won several other commendations in a 17-team field at the Bloomsburg Novice Tournament Sept. 28. The team went on to place third at the West Chester Rose Bowl Tournament in October and third again among 26 teams at the Bloomsburg Mad Hatter Tournament in November.

In January, Forensics Society took first place in Lincoln-Douglas debate within a field of more than 25 schools at a tournament hosted by Indiana University in Bloomington, Ind. Some of the top schools and competitors in the nation participated in the tournament.

Competing in a field of 36 schools at a major national tournament hosted by University of Texas-Austin Jan. 11-12, Heins made it to the semifinal round of 12 in impromptu speech. He finished just one spot shy of reaching the finals.

Last school year, nine students competed in 17 speech events and eight debate events at the National Forensics Association Championship Tournament April 18-22 at Berry College in Mount Berry, Ga.

Categorized in: Academic News