The UR Debate Union has had some significant achievements this semester, including placing 15th in the nation in both the Cross Examination Debate Association and the National Debate Tournament polls.

“Additionally, we had two teams debate at the NDT, the most prestigious debate tournament of the year and had two teams clear the CEDA Nationals, the largest debate tournament of the year,” President-elect of the Debate Union and and junior Chris Lavin said.

The CEDA nationals were held between March 18 and 22 at San Francisco State University in San Francisco. “It is the largest tournament of the year with over 187 teams,” Lavin said. The two teams at the CEDA Nationals were senior Steven D’Amico and freshman Bahadur Khan, and seniors Elizabeth Gazkell and Michael Morosi.

The NDT was held between March 25 and 28, at Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington. The two teams that received an invitation to the tournament were D’Amico and Khan, and seniors Anna Czapla and Ilana Kaplan-Shain.

“Only the 78 best teams in the particular year are able to compete, either by receiving an invitation to the tournament or competing in a district tournament for a limited number of entries,” Lavin said.

D’Amico and Kaplan-Shain were named All-American debaters, while freshmen David Merkle and Khan bagged the titles of top novice speaker in CEDA East and top Junior Varsity speaker in the nation, respectively.

“D’Amico, a varsity debater, received the Michael K. Davis CEDA East Region Debater of the Year award, the third time in four years a UR debater has received this award,” Lavin said.

Samuel Nelson, the Union’s director of forensics, was awarded the prestigious Brownlee Award, which is given to the coach who has contributed significantly to CEDA in the areas of education, scholarship and service.

Thelion Society places

third in championship

The Thelion Society placed third at the National Academic Quiz Tournaments’ Intercollegiate Championship Tournament this past weekend held at Tulane University in New Orleans on April 8 and 9.

“The team will be competing in TRASHionals this upcoming weekend, as well as the College Bowl National Championships the following weekend,” Publicity Director of the Thelion Society and freshman Jason Eisele said. “We have recently been ranked ninth in a national poll, up from 13 at the start of last season.”

The Thelion Society competes in academic competitions like the College Bowl, as well as traveling to intercollegiate tournaments.

Among the teams that the UR team defeated are Yale University, University of California-Berkeley, University of Illinois, Swarthmore College and the University of Florida.

“Our record was 7-0 in the initial round robin, which qualified us into the top bracket of the playoffs, where we went 3-3, losing games only to Michigan, Chicago and Stanford to keep third place,” Thelion Society member and junior Siddharth Parameswaran said. “The results of this weekend will probably raise our national ranking, which before the nationals had us at 5th place, behind Chicago, Michigan, Berkeley and Illinois. We hope to advance a place or two in the poll, although fifth place is as high as we’ve ever been.”

“Although I didn’t compete at NAQT ICT, I’m proud of our finish,” Eisele said.

Reporting by Shweta Krishnan.

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