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Arkansas State Debate Team Closes Regular Season With Fifth Consecutive Tournament Win


JONESBORO, Ark. — Competing and winning are two things Arkansas State’s Debate Team members enjoy and they are good at it as they proved once again by concluding the regular season with a dominant victory at the 2013 LSU Mardi Gras Classic in Baton Rouge, Feb. 8-9.

After approximately 10 hours of competition the ASU Debate team posted an 11-1 record and brought home another championship in Parliamentary Debate. Other teams in the competition include Louisiana Tech, Southern Mississippi, Union University, William Carey, Stephen F. Austin, and McNeese State.

This win marks the fourth consecutive tournament conquest for the ASU debaters dating back to the fall semester.

“In my opinion, this is the perfect way to finish out our regular season,” said Dr. Chris Harper, debate team director and assistant professor of Communication Studies.  “We have brought home top awards at every tournament we attended this year and are really gearing up to close the season strong at the IFA (International Forensics Association Tournament) hosted in Antwerp, Belgium and International Public Debate Association (IPDA) national tournaments. “

The teams of senior political science major of Searcy Clint Simpson and sophomore communications studies major of Jacksonville Benton Bajorek, along with freshman Lakin Cathey of from Heber Springs and freshman Samantha Grooms of Springdale, who both posted undefeated 4-0 records on their way to take the championship. 

Not only did ASU reign in the team category, but senior communications studies Ken Corbit of Leachville and junior communication studies major Micah Christensen from Cheyenne, Wyo., brought home the top two individual debate speaker awards.

“I couldn't be more proud of this team. In my opinion, this is the perfect way to finish out our regular season.”

—Dr. Chris Harper