Past Forensics Data

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The Point Loma Speech and Debate team competed in the NCCFA (National Christian College Forensics Association) National Championship for the past several days at Colorado Christian College with four of our teams (8 students).  Eight of our more senior debaters were competing in Missouri at two different National Championships for debate recently and were not with us on this trip.  Yet these 8 students competing at Colorado Christian University still managed to win Second Place in the large school division Debate Sweepstakes award, out of three different divisions for debate.  Not sure how 8 students equals a large school entry, but we will take it. :-)  

And freshman Jack Gillette won First Place in the Senior Division of NFA Lincoln Douglas debate, debating on the development of the moon.  So congratulations Jack on being named the National Champion in this event.

We are also happy to announce that our bid to host this Christian College National Championship at PLNU next year has been accepted by the NCCFA.  We will host the national championship at the beginning of Spring Break next year, Saturday March 5th through Monday March 7th, 2016.  Spectators and community or alumni judges will be welcome.  Thanks to the Cabinet for supporting this bid.

The Colorado travel group will be back on campus and in classes tomorrow, and the Missouri crew should all be back today.  We already posted the NPDA results from Kansas City several days ago.  The two teams competing at William Jewell University in Liberty MO for NPTE just barely missed the break to elimination rounds as they were not completely successful in affirming that cetaceans should be granted legal status as persons. Please don't ask.  I remember when we debated gun control and the death penalty. :-)

Here are the  noteworthy awards for our students at Christian College Nationals.  Many of our students won multiple awards, and over half of these students are in their first year of college debate.

NPDA Debate

Jr Division: Alan Jacques an Thomas Routson Quarter Finalist 4th Place)


Nov Division

 Montana Massone and Zach Springer -  Semi Finalists (3rd Place)

Lilly Jenner and Ebanezare Tadele - Semi Finalists (3rd Place)


Nov Top Speaker Awards

Seventh Place - Montana Massone


NFA Lincoln Douglas Debate

Open Division -  Jack Gillette - 1st Place - National Champion!

 Junior Division - Thomas Routson - 2nd Place


IPDA Debate


Novice Division

Lily Jenner - Semi Finalist (3rd Place)

Montana Massone - Quarter Finalist ( 4th Place)


Thanks for your continued support of the teams, and especially the students in your classes.  Special thanks to Professor Lorina Schrauger and Alum Mac Andrews who helped tremendously on these tournaments.

For those of you that have not heard we are sorry to be saying good bye to long time Associate Director of Forensics  Professor Melissa Lazaro, who will be joining the private sector at the end of this semester.  I cannot stress enough how greatly we have appreciated her hard work and investment in this team for so many years.  She will be greatly missed by the team, our department, and by me personally.  Those of you that have been around for awhile might remember her as a student at PLNU more than a few years ago, Melissa Gentzkow, where she was recruited from a beginning speech class. :-)

Please wish her well if you see her.

Colorado Christian College

The National Parliamentary Debate Association (NPDA) has several hundred college and universities competing each year, and offers the most difficult level of intercollegiate parliamentary debate in the country.  The most successful of those programs compete each year at the NPDA National Championship Tournament, which just concluded in Kansas City.  Point Loma's four teams competing there won the 12th place Tournament Sweepstakes award after two of our teams advanced to the elimination bracket.  


Here is how our students did against some very difficult competition in their 8 preliminary rounds of competition. 


    Frank Daniel and Caleb Moore - 5 and 3 record, winning first elimination round, and dropping in the second to the #1 seed team in the tournament.

    Josh Gilbert and Brandon West - 5 and 3 record dropping in their first elimination round to Berkeley.

    Kasey Graves and Nick Kjeldgaard - 4 and 4 record, despite Kasey studying abroad the entire fall.

    Ben Becker and Autumn Schultz - 3 and 5 record, in just their second year in the activity, versus many with 7-8 years of experience or more.


Also exciting is that for the NPDA Yearlong Sweepstakes race, the PLNU debate team earned the Fourth Place Sweepstakes award in the nation, counting the top four tournaments of the season, and including novices, juniors and seniors, against the best four tournaments for every other college competing in the NPDA throughout the year.


These results mean that PLNU is still comfortably ranked in the number one spot in the country when comparing all other competing colleges and universities as ranked over the last 20 years or so, since NPDA started collecting this data.  The second place school on that list has about a third fewer points, and is no longer competing in this activity.


The two more senior PLNU teams will stay in Missouri to compete at the more elite National Parliamentary Tournament of Excellence hosted at William Jewell, tomorrow through Sunday, after having earned first round bids to that tournament.  The other two teams will be returning home this evening.


Professor Schrauger and I will be taking 8 of our other students to Christian College Nationals tomorrow and flying back Monday.  We appreciate the support of our faculty working with the students missing classes, the administration for allowing us to participate at this level of competition, and the alumni for their prayer, financial and coaching/judging support. 


We are pleased to note that many of these national tournaments will likely be held in California next year, saving us travel time, funds and time away from classes, which we strive to minimize.  But please know that at these tournaments our students are working hard for 12-14 hours a day in a demanding academic learning environment competing with some of the best and the brightest students from around the country.  We will put in a bid for hosting Christian College Nationals next Spring Break here at PLNU in case you would like to see some of these competitors up close and personal. :-)


Thanks for your continued support.

Kansas City KCC

PLNU debaters represented Point Loma well at this past weekend's PSCFA Spring Championship hosted by Moorpark College for 30 colleges and universities mostly from Southern California and Arizona, but from as far away as Eastern Michigan.  Noteworthy honors for PLNU students include: 

Two students named to the all academic team (Olivia Neidhardt and Jack Gillette) which requires a very high GPA and strong participation in forensics.

PLNU Senior and team President Frank Daniel was awarded the prestigious Bovero Award given to the community's top Senior, based on not only competitive excellence but also on service to the school and overall community. In addition to a nice award, Frank also received a monetary scholarship.

Due primarily to budgetary restraints we only participated in Parliamentary Debate at this tournament, but the students still competed at a high level.

Juniors Brandon West and Joshua Gilbert won Gold Medals in the Senior level Championship through winning their Octa final, Quarter final, Semi Final and Final rounds.

Also advancing to elimination rounds and winning Silver Medals in Senior Parliamentary debate by winning their first elimination rounds were the teams of Nick Kjeldgaard and Kasey Graves, and Caleb Moore and Frank Daniel.

Winning a Bronze medal in the Novice division was the team of Lillian Jenner and Ebanezare Tadele.

Winning top ten speaker awards were the following PLNU students grouped by experiential division:

3rd Place in Senior - Frank Daniel

4th Place in Senior - Nick Kjeldgaard 

6th Place in Senior - Brandon West

10th Place in Senior - Josh Gilbert

9th Place in Junior - Alan Jacques

6th Place in Junior - Thomas Routson

2nd Place in Novice - Montana Massone

3rd Place in Novice - Zach Springer

7th Place in Novice - Kristen Rosenthal

9th Place in Novice - Ebanezare Tadele

This concludes our normal competitive season and we just have a  few national championships to attend in Colorado and Missouri.  


PLNU is currently ranked 5th Place in the Yearlong National Sweepstakes Race, which includes colleges and universities of all sizes from schools as small as ours or smaller, to the U C Berkeleys and UCLAs throughout the country, also including University of Notre Dame, Wheaton, several military academies, etc.

Moorpark College

Here are the results from the inaugural American Enterprise Institute Debate Tournament co-hosted by Colorado Christian University in Washington DC on the weekend of
February 13-15, 2015.


PLNU took three teams, one in Novice (Montana Massone & Zach Springer), and two in Open (Caleb Moore & Frank Daniel, and Kasey Graves & Nick Kjeldgaard).  Awards were won by each of the three teams.

Nick Kjeldgaard was named the Top Speaker in the Open Division and Kasey Graves won Seventh Place, and Caleb Moore won Eighth Place Speaker in open Division, winning three of the top ten awards.  

In Novice Montana Massone won Third Place Speaker.

Frank and Kasey advanced to the quarter finals before falling on a split decision.

It was also great to see a number of former Point Loma alumni debaters and supporters while there at the tournament.

Not so great was the adventure of dealing with DC's worst weather of the winter and the worst seen in many years, probably since Snowzilla. While we heard Southern California was enjoying a heat wave in the 90s, DC weather reporters warned of, hypothermia, blizzards, wind chill equivalents of 20-30 degrees below zero and wind gusts between 50-60 mph at times, resulting in a state of emergency declared for the city as two of the three area airports were closed prior to our departure.  The next day the entire city closed down due to snow and cold.

Unfortunately the weather delays resulted in missing our connecting flight in Chicago forcing us to stay until late last night, and not actually  getting our luggage till close to 3:00 A.M..  Then that city got cold, very cold.  

But the students were phenomenal and Professor Melissa Lazaro did an amazing job.  We squeezed in as many cultural and historical sites as the weekend allowed.  We learned many important historical lessons, and most importantly learned that no one should ever leave beautiful, warm Point Loma.

Happy to have had the opportunity, but it is great to be back home.

Colorado Christian University, Washington DC