Debate team captures three national titles in Nashville

The Grove City College Debate Team left campus last week for Nashville to compete in the National Christian College Forensics Association (NCCFA) Invitational and returned from the tournament four days later with three national championship titles in tow.

Ten College debaters participated in the competition, with three students claiming titles and the team winning the Quality Award, which is given to the team whose entire squad had the best winning percentage across their varied entries. It is the team’s second NCCFA Quality Award in the last three years. The team also took second place in the Division II Sweepstakes.

“I am particularly proud of this performance because we had been experiencing an up-and-down season by our standards, so we adjusted our preparation and strategy heading into nationals and it paid off in a huge way,” said head coach and Professor of History Dr. Jason Edwards.

Grove City College sophomores Braeden Farley and Joshua Xu dominated in the National Parliamentary Debate Association (NPDA) division and won the national title. Xu claimed the national NPDA title at last year’s PKD National Championship. Grove City College also comprised three of the four teams in the NPDA semifinals, closing out the final round with sophomores Collin Alexander and Calvin Boss claiming second place and the husband and wife team of juniors Benjamin and Priya Anastasi taking third.

Debate team co-captain Benjamin Anastasi took first place as Parliamentary Debate speaker, adding another title to the team’s credit. Farley placed second and Alexander won the fifth-place award in Parliamentary Debate.

Grove City College also performed very well in the International Public Debate Association (IPDA) debate format. Junior Lauren Travieso continued her strong semester, advancing to the semifinals in Varsity IPDA and taking home the fourth place IPDA Speaker Award. Freshman Stuart Hochstetler also continued to impress advancing out of the largest pool of competitors to the quarterfinals in Novice IPDA.

“I am proud of the entire team; they hit the ground running on Thursday and built on our success from our last time at the NCCFI. Everyone did well and pulled their weight in earning the Quality Award,” team co-captain Justus Carnley said. “I was truly impressed, but also not surprised at all by the performance of all our members,” Benjamin Anastasi added.

Other schools participating in the tournament included: Cedarville University, Concordia University – Irvine, Liberty University, Northwest Nazarene, Schreiner University, University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, Whitworth University, William Carey University, Belmont University, Bethany Lutheran, California Baptist University, Colorado Christian University, Dordt College,Grand Canyon University, and Howard Payne University.

The team heads next to the National Educational Debate Association National Tournament in April in Detroit, Mich.

Nashville debaters, pictured below, from left to right, front row: Olivia Petty, Priya Anastasi, Lauren Travieso, and Benjamin Anastasi. Back row: Braeden Farley, Joshua Xu, Stuart Hochstetler, Justus Carnley, Calvin Boss, and Collin Alexander.


Debate team captures three national titles in Nashville

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