The Whitworth University forensics team took first place at the 2020 National Christian College Forensics Association national tournament. This tournament, held at Grove City College in Grove City, Pennsylvania, included 18 Christian schools from 13 states who are members of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU) or have a similar Christian commitment.
Whitworth took first in speech sweepstakes, first in debate sweepstakes and first place overall. Whitworth finished ahead of 18 other schools, including Azusa Pacific University, Colorado Christian University, Grand Canyon University and Liberty University. The Pirates point total was greater than the second and third place teams combined. This is the seventh time in eight years the team has won this tournament.
Tucker Wilson ’20 was the top overall varsity competitor and Drew Lorenc ’23 was the top overall novice competitor.
- In varsity debate Tucker Wilson took second place and Jericho Simone ’22 was a quarterfinalist (elite eight). Tucker was the second-best speaker.
- In junior varsity debate, Drew Lorenc took first place, AhLana Ames ’22 took second place, Aidan Hollister ’23, Annaclare Splettstoeszer ’23 and Skye Gordon ’23 were quarterfinalists. Drew Lorenc was the top debate speaker, Kelea Ilac ’22 was second, Skye Gordon was fourth and Annaclare Splettstoeszer was fifth.
- In novice debate, Payton Lo ’23, Palmer Pederson ’23 and Travis Plunkett ’23 were quarterfinalists. Palmer Pederson was the fourth-best debate speaker.
In individual speaking events:
- After Dinner Speaking: Chauncella Koulibali took first place, Drew Lorenc took second, Tucker Wilson took sixth. In the novice division, Celeste Riley-Norman ‘23 took first place, Travis Plunkett took third and Courtney Iseman ’23 took fourth.
- Duo: Tucker Wilson and Chauncella Koulibali took second place, and AhLana Ames and Kelea Ilac took third. In the novice division Drew Lorenc and Skye Gordon took third.
- Faith Literature: AhLana Ames took fifth place.
- Extemporaneous: Tucker Wilson took second place. In the novice division, Annaclare Splettstoeszer took second and Aidan Hollister took third.
- Impromptu: Tucker Wilson took second place. In the novice division, Annaclare Splettstoeszer took fifth and Aidan Hollister was a semifinalist (top 12).
- Informative: In the novice division Annaclare Splettstoeszer took first place, Celeste Riley-Norman took second, Courtney Iseman took third and Payton Lo took sixth.
- Poetry: Jericho Simone took second place, AhLana Ames took fourth and Kelea Ilac took sixth place.
- Persuasion: Jericho Simone took first place and Kelea Ilac took fifth. In the novice division, Celeste Riley-Norman took first place, Annaclare Splettstoeszer took third and Palmer Pederson took fourth.
- Programmed Oral Interpretation: Chauncella Koulibali took fifth place.
- Prose: Chauncella Koulibali took third place and Jericho Simone took sixth place.
Alumni Rebecca Korf ’15, Jacob Farrell ’19, Sara Muscente ’19 and Rylee Walter ’19 were guest judges for Whitworth at the tournament. The team is coached Mike Ingram, professor of communication studies and director of forensics, and Stephie Gibbons ’15, assistant director of forensics.