The Great Bend High School debate squad traveled to Hays on Saturday Oct. 6th, for their second tournament of the season, taking five teams in the Novice Division and two teams in the Open Division. Both Open Teams placed in the top six winning medals. Two Novice Teams placed in the top six also winning medals. Three students won speaker awards in Open and Novice Divisions and two more Novice teams were in the top ten and earning winning records. The team also won a trophy by placing second overall in sweepstakes.
In the Open Division Senior Chase Pumford and Freshman Kenna Dirks placed 4th with a 4-1 win/loss record. Also in the Open Division, first year debate student Jordan Otten and second year Paige VanSteenburgh placed 6th with a 3-2 win/loss record. Pumford also placed 2nd in individual speaker awards. “We really did a lot better than I expected,” said Pumford. “This being Kenna’s first open tournament and only her second tournament of the season, I was a little nervous going in but we managed to place 4th and all considering I think it is a pretty good accomplishment.”
In the Novice Division the two Great Bend Teams placed in the top six and medaled. They tied with 4-1 win/loss records and 21 speaker points. The tie was broken by the team’s opposition records. Jack Pumford and Jordan Stoulil placed 4th and Kimberly Gonzalez and Rebecca Clark placed 5th. Two more GBHS Novice teams placed in the top ten involved in a five way tie for sixth place with 3-2 win/loss records and 24 speaker points. The tie was broken by the team’s opposition records. Sarah Keller and Mallorie McNett placed 7th and Maddi Bonham and Lesley Galvan placed 9th when the tie was broken. In the Novice Division individual speaker awards Keller and Clark also placed as the 4th and 2nd individual speakers respectively. Galvan stated, “I was kind of disappointed to not have placed higher, especially since I feel like I could have won all of my rounds. I am just wanting to use this as a chance to improve and hopefully place higher at the next tournament.” Donovan Salgado and Kane Schumacher also competed in the Novice Division.
In yet another tie, the team tied for first overall in Team Sweepstakes with Salina Central when they took each school’s best three team’s records Great Bend had three 4-1 win/loss record’s for a total of 12 wins and three losses with 63 speaker points and Salina Central had 12 wins and three losses with 58 speaker points. The GBHS team placed second in Sweepstakes overall out of 10 schools and 42 teams. GBHS debate coach Barbara Watson said, “I thought all of the teams did a great job. It is only our second tournament weekend of the season. Almost all of them came in and practiced several times this past week and it really improved their confidence, delivery and overall performance. I was very proud of them.”
Next Saturday Great Bend will be traveling to Buhler.