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Idaho State Debate opens season with multiple honors

September 19, 2018

POCATELLO – The Idaho State University Rupp Debate Society team battled to the top at its season opener tournament. The Bengals earned first and third of the top four spots in the team competition, and two of the top-10 ranks for individual speaker quality.

Bengal debaters freshman Jett Smith and sophomore Kaden Marchetti, both from Pocatello, took first place and sophomore Conner Coutts from Pocatello and freshman Jordan Reynolds from Blackfoot delivered third place in the final round. Smith and Marchetti were additionally noted for their individual speaking skills, ranked fifth and 10th respectively in a field of more than 40 competitors.

The season opener was the Rimrock Classic at Rocky Mountain College in Billings, Montana. The tournament featured British parliamentary debate, a form of academic debate held between four teams, with each team having two members. Teams face a new topic each round and have a 15-minute prep-period for the one-hour contest.

“We’re very proud of the team,” said Sarah Partlow Lefevre, the head coach for the squad. “This is a great way to open the year.”

Junior Nick Grunig from Pocatello and sophomore Hannah Henson from Buhl also competed.

The tournament hosted 20 teams from the region, including entries from Carroll College at Helena, Montana, Black Hills State University in South Dakota, the University of Wyoming and others.

In addition to British parliamentary style, the Rupp Debate Society participates in international parliamentary debate, public forum debate and individual forensics competitions both on the road and online at the regional and national levels.

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