The Belmont Abbey Debate Team returned from the University of Central Arkansas earlier this week after competing at an annual tournament geared towards preparation for the IPDA National Tournament. Five Belmont Abbey students competed in a total field of nearly 100 competitors from seven states.
In varsity, first-year Daniyil Potapenko concluded the tournament with a 3-4 record, narrowly missing advancement to elimination rounds. Senior Adrianna Hodges also spoke well, earning an average of 36 points of 40 in her preliminary debates. In junior varsity, third-year Isabelle Robertson earned three ballots, placing her one win away from elimination rounds, and in the top 15 for both speaking scores and overall debate record.
In novice, Paloma Shrauder placed two ballots away from advancement into elimination rounds and concluded the tournament with honors for ninth place in individual speaker points. First-year Isabella Barrett also excelled, earning a 5-2 preliminary record. Moving into elimination rounds, Isabella automatically advanced through to the quarterfinals as both the fourth seed in the tournament and the fourth place speaker. She won the quarterfinal round on a 3-0 decision before concluding as a semi-finalist on a split decision.
Our next competition takes place February 21-22, when the team travels to the North Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities Ethics Bowl. We look forward to continuing our season by discussing agricultural policies in Raleigh.