Forensics team qualifies for national tournaments


CORVALLIS, Ore. – Oregon State University’s forensics team hosted the annual Earl Wells Memorial Speakeasy on the OSU campus last weekend, and came away with a third place prize in the Four Year College and University Sweepstakes category.

Nineteen schools attended the conference hosted by OSU, including Carroll College of Helena, Mont.; California State University, Chico; Boise State University; and Stephen F. Austin State University of Nacogdoches, Texas.

“Our team pulled out all the stops and did so with grace,” said Mark Porrovecchio, director of the team.  “There were 121 debaters and over 350 event entries. I think we did the OSU community proud with our tournament.”

Loni Hartman of Albany took second place in open persuasive speaking and received fourth place in open impromptu speaking. Dalicia Fennell of Sutherlin was a finalist in open prose interpretation. Bidwell took third place in open impromptu speaking. Thornburg received third place in open persuasive speaking.

The wins continued in debate. Fennell was a gold medalist and Kyle Bidwell of Sumner, Wash., was a bronze medalist in open debate. Ryan Ensor of Corvallis was a bronze medalist in novice debate.

The competition squad was rounded out by Kelsey Irish of Williams, Ore., Michael Walters of Gresham, Jamil Barbar of Portland, Jana Hodgins of Clackamas, and Daniel Meiwes and Esmeralda Arredondo of Corvallis. Porrovecchio was assisted in running the tournament by graduate assistant Forest Ledbetter of Sheridan, Ore. The team was helped by alumnus and current graduate students David Kubota of Forest Grove and Daniel Torres of Reno, Nev.

It was a busy weekend for the team, which also attended the American Forensics Association National Individual Events Tournament District II Qualifier at Lewis and Clark College in Portland on Friday.

Two students competed to attend nationals at the University of Nebraska-Kearney during spring term. Bidwell took fourth place in open impromptu speaking and was third place in open extemporaneous speaking. Kori Thornburg of Kennewick, Wash., placed fifth in open persuasive speaking.

Celebrating its 118th season, OSU Forensics is one of the oldest clubs on campus. For more information on the team, contact Porrovecchio at mark.porrovecchio@oregonstate.edu