Siloam Springs, Ark (February 9, 2004) - For the first time in its history, John Brown University received first place in the Arkansas Speech and Debate Collegiate Championship Feb. 6-7. The event was hosted by JBU and included: Arkansas Tech University, Arkansas State University, University of Arkansas, Henderson State University, University of Arkansas Monticello, and Arkansas Northeastern University. After the first day of competition in debate, JBU was in third place, with the University of Arkansas in first and Arkansas Tech in second place. “I wasn’t sure of the outcome of the tournament because the University of Arkansas dominated in debate,” Jason Hough, speech and debate coach said. “I told the team they needed to make up ground on Saturday.” Saturday’s competition consisted of individual speaking events. JBU made a strong showing in several categories. “We have a very strong team in terms of being well-rounded,” said Hough. “What we lacked in debate points this weekend we made up for in individual events.” JBU placed first in individual events as a team; Arkansas Tech University placed second; and the University of Arkansas placed fourth. The overall state champion is determined by adding the point totals from the debate team and individual events. JBU finished the tournament with 146 points and was declared state champions, followed by the University of Arkansas with 120 points, and Arkansas Tech University with 119 points. The JBU team will next be attending the Fulbright Debate Championship at the University of Arkansas Feb. 20-22. Team results from the tournament are as follows: Individual results: Devi Abraham/Lindsey Toney - first place Parliamentary Team debate. Cole Truitt/Erin Sebeck - semi-finalists, Parliamentary Team debate. After Dinner Speaking: Nicole Ediger, third place; Seth Wright, forth place; Andy Williams, fifth place. Dramatic Interpretation: Eve Baldwin, first place; Daniel West, second place; James Barnes, third place; Tori McCracken, forth place; Erin Sebeck, fifth place. Dramatic Duo Interpretation: James Barnes/Lindsey Toney second place; Cole Truitt/Erin Sebeck third place; Eve Baldwin/Jessica Hunsberger forth place. Impromptu Speaking: Devi Abraham, third place; Zach Fuller fourth place; Abby Kirkbride, fifth place; Ben Rasmussen, sixth place. Informative Speaking: Erin Sebeck, second place; Abby Kirkbride, forth place; Ben Rasmussen, sixth place. Persuasive Speaking: Cari Middendorf, second place. Poetry Interpretation: Jessica Hunsberger first place; Virginia Scott, second place; Eve Baldwin, fifth place. Prose Interpretation: Nichole Ediger, first place; Scott, third place; James Barnes, forth place; Felicia Parmain, sixth place. John Brown University is a top-tier private university, ranked 11th by U.S. News & World Report in the Southern Region. JBU enrolls more than 1,800 students from 42 states and 42 countries. JBU is a member of Arkansas’ Independent Colleges and Universities and the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities.