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UW Debate Team Concludes Successful Semester


December 6, 2011 — The University of Wyoming debate team members were consistently in the elimination rounds of tournaments throughout the country during the fall semester, collecting victories against several prestigious schools and many of UW's district rivals.

Travis Cram, UW director of forensics, says, "This is a group of students that works incredibly hard and has logged long hours both in Laramie and on the road honing their skills and arguments. With so many wins over some of the nation's largest and most elite schools, UW debaters have once again demonstrated the University of Wyoming is an academic force to be reckoned with."

In policy debate, juniors Amy Pauli (Green River) and Jared Fanning (Cheyenne) had a breakout semester that included important wins over Stanford, University of Southern California, Texas, Oregon, Georgetown, Wake Forest, Whitman College, California State-Fullerton and Augustana. The highlight of their semester was a run to the Sweet 16 in a field of more than 60 teams at the Las Vegas Classic tournament, hosted by the University of Nevada-Las Vegas.

Junior Kacey Ballard (Green River) and freshman Mary Marcum (Omaha, Neb.) also had a dominating semester with a Sweet 16 appearance at the Joe C. Jackson debates in Oklahoma City and the Elite 8 at a tournament hosted by Idaho State University. Along the way, the duo posted victories against USC, Kansas, Trinity University, Denver University, UNLV, Idaho State and Weber State. Ballard and Marcum were honored for their individual speaking excellence at the Idaho State tournament, winning first and fifth speakers overall, respectively.

Several other Wyoming debaters brought home victories in policy debate. The team of sophomore Ben Berry and freshman Akash Gondalia (both of Cheyenne) achieved an Elite 8 appearance at the Idaho State tournament. Throughout the semester, they collected wins against New York University, Whitman College, Idaho State and Weber State.

Junior Kathleen Bouzis (Omaha, Neb.) and sophomore Pete Steiner (Fort Collins, Colo.) worked hard and were able to defeat Denver University, UNLV, Idaho State and the University of Missouri- Kansas City. Finally, freshmen Bethany Jones (Green River) and Jami Craig (Pueblo, Colo.) chipped in by defeating Denver University, Binghamton and Los Rios College.

In parliamentary debate, sophomore Gordon Dobbs (Cheyenne) had a successful semester with several different partners. At the Air Force Academy tournament, Dobbs and Wiley Combs (Cheyenne) made it to the Sweet 16 with victories over the University of Utah and Northwest College. Dobbs and Combs also made a run to the semifinals of the Casper College tournament before being defeated by Northwest College.

Wyoming debaters also traveled to the Colorado College and Northwest College tournaments, collecting victories against Colorado-Boulder, the Air Force Academy, Colorado College, and Western Wyoming Community College.

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