Over fall break, the Grove City Debate Team continued their season with a second-place finish at the John G. Fee Memorial Tournament at Berea College in Kentucky.
Over two days, Grove City College faced off against over thirty teams representing eleven other schools including Berea College, Rollins College, Transylvania University, and the University of Kentucky. Grove City College fielded a particularly young team as out of the twelve competitors, four were attending their first collegiate tournament and five others were competing at the “open” level for the first time. Despite their relative inexperience, they finished second in their division.
The team of Senior Dan Pugh and Sophomore David Weix placed second overall with Pugh being named the tournament’s third best speaker and Weix winning the seventh place speaker award. Pugh and Weix also had the highest combined speaker points for any team at the tournament. Junior Mark Mariani and Sophomore Drew Brackbill made it to quarterfinals where they narrowly lost on a two-one decision to the eventual tournament champions. Brackbill was ranked as the tournament’s eighth best speaker while his partner Mariani took ninth. Sophomore Ryan Brown finished just outside the top ten with a 12th place finish.
Topics at the tournament included debates over the role of the African Union, whether to end drone strikes, and how to best reform Social Security. In addition to testing their knowledge base on current events, the debaters adjusted throughout the tournament to a variety of topic types including traditional ones over public policy but also debates over values and the validity of certain claims.
The Grove City College Debate team is coached by Professor of History Dr. Jason R. Edwards. In addition to Edwards, Professor of Political Science Dr. Michael Coulter and Associate Professor of English Dr. Andrew Harvey accompanied the team to Berea.
Grove City will continue its season with tournaments in November at Marietta College and Bowling Green State University, both in Ohio.