Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Idaho State Takes Second Place at Lewis and Clark

Idaho State University sophomores Samantha Bollinger and Andrew Hoth took second place in the Junior Varsity division at the Lewis and Clark Debate Tournament in Portland, OR on the weekend of October 12-13, 2013. Bollinger was recognized as the top speaker at the tournament, while Hoth was recognized as the third speaker. 

The sophomore team entered the tournament that hosted 250 debate entries from 47 different schools in 13 states. Bollinger and Hoth finished preliminary debates with an undefeated 6-0 record and entered single elimination debates as the top seed. Their wins were against teams from The University of Washington, Western Washington University, The University of Nevada at Reno, and Boise State University. Their one loss came in the final round against Whitman College.

Andre Hoth & Samantha Bollinger at Lewis and Clark.  Photo by Sarah T. Partlow Lefevre.
This tournament marked a first for the Idaho State Debate Team. They were new to competing in parliamentary debate sanctioned by the National Parliamentary Debate Association (NPDA).  This type of debate requires broad knowledge of current events and debate skills.  It is particularly challenging because there is a different topic in each debate.  Debaters must also be prepared to debate all sides of any given topic.  Over two days, the Idaho State students debated the government shut down, the federal minimum wage, U. S. military presence in Africa, the Iranian nuclear program, undocumented immigrants, the Employment Non Discrimination Act, the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty, and National Security Agency surveillance programs. 

The James M. & Sharon E. Rupp Debate Society fielded four teams in three different divisions. In addition to Hoth and Bollinger, the following students participated: Aljosa Ivanovic, Mike Eyre, Robyn Hemmert, Anne Johnson, Zach Sayles, and Samantha Richardson.

“We were nervous trying out a new form of debate,” said Sarah Partlow Lefevre, Director of the Rupp Debate Society.  “But, this early success bodes well for our ability to be competitive in the parliamentary format.  All the debaters did a great job and learned a lot about many topics.”

“This was the season opener for many of our teams and our first time attending the Lewis and Clark Tournament. Our success at this tournament shows promise for another successful year for ISU debate. Our team values a tradition of excellence and I am excited to see the debaters continue in their success,” said assistant debate coach, Roger Copenhaver.

The team will travel to the University of Puget Sound, Wake Forest, and Weber State University over the remainder of the fall semester.  The next tournament will be held at the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, WA during the weekend of October 25-28, 2013.

Front Row: Sasha Ivanovic, Zach Sayles, Samantha Bollinger, Andrew Hoth, Roger Copenhaver.  Back Row: Anne Johnson, Robyn Hemmert, Samantha Richardson, Mike Eyre.  Photo by Sarah T. Partlow Lefere.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Idaho State Debate Wins First Place Team and Speaker Awards at Large Regional Tournament

On the last weekend of September, seniors Matea Ivanovic and Kendra Doty debated for approximately 25 hours in a total of 10 debates to win the Gonzaga University Jesuit Debates. Ivanovic and Doty, who are members of the James M. & Sharon E. Rupp Debate Society, participated in six preliminary debates over two days to qualify for the single elimination bracket. During the preliminary debates, their record was 5-1 or 83%. Overall, their record was 9-1 or 90%. Ivanovic won the first place individual speaker award based on judge ratings of her performance during each of the six preliminary debates.

Kendra Doty & Matea Ivanovic, First Place Team at Gonzaga.  Photo by Sarah T. Partlow Lefevre.
The Gonzaga tournament is hosted every fall and attracts teams from as far away as Kansas and California. The tournament, hosted forty individual teams from thirteen schools including Emporia State, last year’s national championship debate squad. Additionally, teams from Arizona State, California State at Fullerton, University of California at Berkeley, Gonzaga, the University of Missouri at Kansas City, the University of Nevada at Las Vegas, Oklahoma University, Puget Sound, Weber State University, and Whitman College.

The tournament uses the Cross Examination Debate Association debate topic. This year the topic is: Resolved: The United States Federal Government should substantially increase statutory and/or judicial restrictions on the war powers authority of the President of the United States in one or more of the following areas: targeted killing; indefinite detention; offensive cyber operations; or introducing United States Armed Forces into hostilities. Each team has an equal number of affirmative and negative debates in preliminary rounds. In single elimination debates, the side is usually determined by a coin toss.

Due to high marks for individual speaking, Ivanovic and Doty entered single elimination debates as the fourth seed of sixteen. In the sweet sixteen, they debated Jenna Bauer and Dillon Johnson from Gonzaga. All three judges voted negative for Idaho State. In the quarter finals they faced off against Mia Epner and Joshua Martin from the University of California, Berkeley. A 3-0 decision in their favor determined that they would advance to the semi-finals. In the semi-final debate, they faced Evan Jones and Jeremiah Worrell from the University of Missouri, Kansas City. In another decisive 3-0, Idaho State learned they would be debating in finals.

According to Director of the James M. & Sharon E. Rupp Debate Society, Dr. Sarah Partlow-Lefevre, “After 22 hours of debate over three days, the debaters were tired, but the adrenaline was there and they performed well in the final round.” Indeed, Ivanovic and Doty claimed the first place trophy on a close 2-1 decision over Christian Rodriguez and Alex Velto who were representing the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

Assistant Coach Lindsay Vanluvanee said, “This is the result of years of practice and countless hours of preparation over weeks. It makes me proud to see Kendra and Matea’s hard work pay dividends.”
Matea Ivanovic, First Speaker at Gonzaga.  Photo by Sarah T. Partlow Lefvere.