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.