Past Forensics Data

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PSCFA Warm Up Scrimmage- Sept 26, 2014

The remainder of the team competed in a four round scrimmage at El Camino College, attended by around 20 colleges and universities from California and Arizona.  Almost 100 debate teams competed.

In the Senior Division the PLNU team of Nick Kjeldgaard and Dana Miyashiro were awarded Certificates of Excellence for losing just one round.  Winning top twenty speaker distinctions were; 

Nick Kjeldgaard - 2nd Speaker - Sophomore

Olivia Neidhardt - 10th Speaker - Junior

Dana Miyashiro - 11th Speaker - Sophomore

Jack Gillette - 18th Speaker - Freshman

In the Junior Division the teams of Ben Becker and Autumn Schultz (both Sophomores), and Alan Jacques and Thomas Routson (a junior and a sophomore) were both awarded certificates of excellence.  The following Junior Division speakers from PLNU were honored with speaker placement distinctions as well.

Thomas Routson - 16th speaker

Karina Guerrero - 17th speaker (freshman)

In the Novice Division the team of Montana Massone and Zach Springer won certificates of Superiority for winning all four of their rounds.  Both are freshmen at their first ever debate tournament.  Also at her first ever debate tournament, winning a top twenty speaker distinction in this category was:

Kristen Rosenthal - 13th Speaker (Sophomore)

The other competitors also did very well, most just barely missing the distinction awards.  All are excited about the upcoming year, including our next tournament this Saturday and Sunday at SDSU here at home.  It is a fairly young team with only one senior and four juniors, but it is already showing much potential, and working hard to improve.  Thanks for your support of this program.  This cross discipline activity draws students from all majors, and debates topics for all majors as well.  Special thanks to alumni Barbara Gausewitz and Kayla Cook who helped to judge and coach our teams.

El Camino College

The PLNU debate team recently returned from the NPDA National Championship

hosted by Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff Arizona where they

competed against over 150 teams from over 50 colleges and universities

across the country.


Point Loma's team won Fifth place in the yearlong national sweepstakes

race based on how the entire squad performed throughout the year,

against hundreds of other colleges and universities nationwide, such

as Cal Berkeley, University of the Pacific, SDSU, Truman State, the

Air Force Academy, Pepperdine, and Rice University.


This Fifth place nationwide award further solidifies Point Loma's

cumulative number one standing in the yearlong sweepstakes race 

over the last 18 years since NPDA has been keeping such records.


The four PLNU teams competing at Nationals were:


Brandon West and Josh Gilbert (2 sophomores)

Chris Danks and Caleb Moore (senior and freshman)

Frank Daniel and Kasey Graves (2 juniors)

Stephanie Haas and Nick Kjeldgaard (senior and freshman)


All four teams performed well, and Josh Gilbert and Brandon West

advanced to the elimination round bracket before dropping on a split

decision to the team from Washburn Univ that went on to drop in finals for 

a second place finish.  This kept alive a 25 year or longer tradition of having 

a PLNU team amass a winning record at Nationals, which qualifies teams to

compete in the elimination rounds.


These four teams together earned enough team wins for PLNU to also be

awarded a 16th Place Tournament Sweepstakes Honor.  Recently

graduated  debate alumni and peer coaches Sydney Awakuni and McLean

Andrews were a tremendous help coaching and judging for the  event.


As our competitive season draws to a close we wish to thank you all

for your continued support of our program, including team coaches like

professors Lazaro and Schrauger, our alumni supporters and

volunteers, other faculty, staff and administrators, and most recently

Dr. Lynn Reaser who joined us as a Forensic Fellow and fielded a ton

of inquiries on all matters economic.  Our students debate different

topics each debate round and rely heavily on what they learn in their

classes, especially political and gender theory on inclusiveness this

year, and education, economic and sociology based topics.


Please refer any promising prospects to us for next year from any

major or class.  We primarily look for bright, hard workers, that are

competitive and present ideas well in both the written and spoken

word. Those that also possess that ineffable essence of charisma are

often especially effective in forensics, as they are in life.  :-).  


Please let me know of any strong leads.  We are hoping to bring in

more strong recruits to add to our returning members.

Northern Arizona University

We are very excited to announce that PLNU Sophomores Josh Gilbert and Brandon West have just repeated as National Champions in the Senior Division of NPDA Parliamentary Debate at the Christian College National Championship hosted at Cal Baptist University this past weekend (NCCFA Nationals March 7-10 ,2014).  They first won this honor last year as Freshmen at the National Championship hosted by John Brown University.  Brandon also won the National Champion Title for the Senior Division of NFA Lincoln Douglas (LD) Debate. PLNU Frosh Autumn Schultz won the Championship for the Novice Division of NFA LD debate, and the Point Loma Team won the Second Place Debate Sweepstakes in the Large School Division, behind Kansas Wesleyan University.


Over 25 top Christian Colleges and Universities from across the country were competing at this Championship, as shown below.

Special thanks to professors Melissa Lazaro, and Lorina Schraugher, and alumni Sydney Awakuni, MacLean Andrews, and Ian Sharples for their help in coaching and judging.  We also had the great pleasure of running into one of our very early supporters for this team, Art Shingler and his family, who were there encouraging a niece competing from Minnesota.  

Here are the specific honors won this past weekend by PLNU students:

Second Place Overall Debate Sweepstakes Large School Division to PLNU


Josh Gilbert and Brandon West - Open Division National Champions NPDA Parliamentary Debate

Nick Kjeldgaard (frosh)- Open Extemporaneous Speaking Semi finalist and Fourth Speaker in the Senior Division of NPDA Debate


Autumn Schultz (frosh) - Novice Programmed Oral interpretation, 5th Place

                                  - NFA Novice Lincoln Douglas Debate Champion


Brandon West - Open Impromptu Speaking 3rd Place

                                - Open Division NFA Lincoln Douglas Debate Champion

                                - 8th Place Speaker in Open Division NPDA Parli Debate


Josh Gilbert.      - Open Division NFA Lincoln Douglas Debate Third Place


There are two remaining debate National Championships running next week at Northern Arizona University, co-hosted by another of our recent alums Professor Caitlyn Burford.  

We thank you not only for your support of our current students who are working hard and learning a lot, but also for your support in hosting the tournaments that we offer through the year.  Three of the top award winning PLNU students at this past championship are former home school league speakers introduced to our campus through the Point Loma Classic, or their National Championship hosted at PLNU in previous years.  A number of other top team members were unable to participate due to severe illness or conflicting travel plans.


Here is the list of participating colleges and universities for this years championship:


  • Azusa Pacific University
  • Belmont University (Nashville, TN)
  • Bethany Lutheran College (Mankato, MN)
  • Bethel University (Arden Hills, MN)
  • Biola Univeristy (La Mirada, CA)
  • California Baptist University (Riverside, CA)
  • Carson-Newman University (Jefferson City, TN)
  • Cedarville University (Cedarville, OH)
  • Colorado Christian University (Lakewood, CO)
  • Covenant College (Lookout Mountain, GA)
  • Dordt College (Sioux Center, IA)
  • Grand Canyon University (Phoenix, AZ)
  • Howard Payne University (Brownwood, TX)
  • Kansas Wesleyan University (Salina, KS)
  • Liberty University (Lynchburg, VA)
  • Malone University (Canton, OH)
  • Northwest Nazarene University (Nampa, ID)
  • Pepperdine University (CA)
  • Point Loma Nazarene University (San Diego, CA)
  • Saint Mary's College of CA (Moraga, CA)
  • San Diego Christian College (San Diego , CA)
  • Seattle Pacific University (Seattle, WA)
  • University of the Cumberlands (williamsburg, KY)
  • Vanguard University (Costa Mesa, CA)
  • Wheaton College (Wheaton, IL)
  • Whitworth University (Spokane, WA
Cal Baptist University

 The Point Loma Speech and Debate team competed against 35 colleges and universities at the PSCFA Spring Championship hosted this past weekend at Moorpark College and won First Place in the four year sweepstakes division, with double the points of the Second Place team.  Congrats to team president and senior Chris Danks, who won Gold Medals in both NFA Lincoln Douglass Debate, and Team Parliamentary Debate with his freshman partner Caleb Moore, and Fourth Place in Open Extemporaneous Speaking.


 In Lincoln Douglas Debate PLNU had 5 students entered in the event (4 in Senior Division, and 1 in Novice).  All five PLNU students posted strong preliminary round records and made the cut to the elimination rounds, where they won four Gold Medals and a Bronze.


 In Parliamentary Team debate, four of the six PLNU teams advanced to the medal rounds, winning two Golds, two Silvers and two Bronzes.  Danks and Moore were named Tournament Champions in the senior division without having lost a single debate.   


 Named to the PSCFA All-Academic Team from PLNU for maintaining a 3.75 GPA were:

Ben Becker         

Olivia Neidhart

Nick Kjelgaard


Here are the specific forensics awards won by the students.


Lincoln Douglas Debate:

Senior Division NFA LD Debate:

               Caleb Moore– Gold Medal

               Chris Danks – Gold Medal

               Josh Gilbert – Gold Medal

               Nick Kjelgaard – Bronze Medal


Novice Division Parliamentary Debate:

               Ben Becker – Gold Medal

In Parliamentary Team Debate: (6 of our 8 teams advanced to the elimination rounds)

Senior Division:

               Chris Danks and Caleb Moore –  Gold Medals (They then won the two follow up debates between the four gold medal teams in semi finals and finals, to be named the tournament champions).

               Frank Daniel and Kasey Graves –  Silver Medals

               Brandon West and Joshua Gilbert – Bronze Medals


Junior Division:

               Dana Miyashiro and Olivia Neidhart –  Silver Medals


Novice Division:

               Ben Becker and Autumn Schultz -  Gold Medals


               Katie McSweeney and Emilio Prieto – Bronze Medals


Speaker Awards:

               Brandon West – 6th Place Speaker in Senior Division

               Autumn Schultz – 9th Place Speaker in Novice Division


Individual Events:

               Chris Danks – Open Extemporaneous Speaking – 4th Place

Moorpark College

It was an exciting weekend at PLNU, as we hosted a number of well attended speech and debate tournaments this weekend.  The chamber of commerce weather may not have helped the region's rain table, but our guests from 44 colleges and universities from Whitman, and Oregon and UCLA to Notre Dame, the Air Force Academy, Valdosta State and Mercer, along with many other great local and out of state programs loved it.  

Our own teams of Chris Danks and Caleb Moore, Frank Daniel and Kasey Graves, and Brandon West and Josh Gilbert all advanced to the elimination bracket in Open Parliamentary Debate and did well.  Stephanie Haas and Nick Kjeldgaard almost advanced in their first ever time competing in British Parliamentary style debate, an event that is becoming popular world wide, and that we offered for the first time at PLNU.

We also discovered that PLNU is currently ranked in 9th place in the nation in NPDA Parliamentary Debate, with a few more opportunities to place even higher by the end of the year.

Many thanks for your support of our efforts to host these large events and special thanks to all the staff members on campus who contributed greatly to the events running so smoothly.  Many coaches and competitors from these other schools commented throughout the weekend that it is their favorite tournament of the year, reminding us how fortunate we are to be located on what in my book is the most beautiful campus in the country.  As you can imagine, I had the pleasure of talking with a group of extremely talented potential recruits from the strongest community programs around. Having enjoyed this special place for several days, they could more easily envision themselves  studying for several years.

Finally, thank you to our many alumni who came by to help out and visit as well.  It was exciting to see how many are involved in terrific graduate programs and or  successful careers of their own, some even in higher education, which is of course the A answer.

Point Loma Nazarene University