JBU Speech and Debate Captures Title

Siloam Springs, Ark (November 11, 2002) — The John Brown University speech and debate team took first place at a regional tournament sponsored by Tulsa Community College on Nov. 8-9 in Tulsa, Okla.

JBU was one of 16 colleges and universities from six states that competed in the tournament. Other competing universities included Southwestern College and the University of Oklahoma.

“We’ve worked hard to get to this point,” said coach Jason Hough. “To receive first place overall in a regional competition was an incredible experience.”

Leading the way for JBU were seniors Kassandra Bohlender and Jena Richmond in team debate. They garnered an undefeated 4-0 record in preliminary competition, and closed out the final round with a 2-1 decision. Bohlender also received an award for top debate speaker. The pair also took 5th place in the dramatic duo competition, while Bohlender took 5th place in impromptu speaking. Junior Steve Cox and sophomore partner Ali Arant also contributed to the victory with a 3-1 record in team debate and a third place finish. Sophomore Devi Abraham and partner freshman Virginia Moor earned a 3-1 record and a fifth place finish. Cox also received a third place finish in prose interpretation.

Freshmen Jenny Laing and Laura Shank secured a 4th place win in Dramatic Duo. Freshman Jessica Hunsberger earned second place in Poetry Interpretation, and sophomore Virginia Scott placed fourth in Poetry Interpretation.

Earning additional points for the team were debate partners sophomore Daniel West and freshman Daniel Ostendorff, and debate partners sophomore Jenny Jackson and Virginia Scott. Other participating members included senior Heather Brewer, freshman Felicia Parmain, and sophomore Josiah Biggs.

Bohlender, Richmond, Cox, Arant, Abraham, Moor, Laing, Shank, Hunsberger, and Scott all qualified for the Pi Kappa Delta National Speech and Debate Tournament in Baltimore, Maryland in March 2003.

“This was a total team effort,” said junior Steve Cox. “Everyone worked very hard to accomplish this first place victory.”

The team’s next tournament is at Cameron University in Lawton, Okla. Dec. 7-8. John Brown University is a private university with an enrollment of more than 1,700 students from 42 states and 45 countries. JBU is a member of Arkansas’ Independent Colleges and Universities and the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities.