Debaters Make Strong Showing in Winter Contests
Jan. 31, 2011
UT Dallas debaters have fought hard this semester, with separate teams reaching the semifinal rounds in two intercollegiate tournaments.
The partnership of Andrew Baker and Collin Roark took third place overall out of 57 teams at the University of Georgia (UGA) intercollegiate debate tournament in Athens, Ga., held Jan. 15-17.
The next weekend, Wes Dwyer and Mayu Takeda advanced to the semifinals before falling to Kansas State at the University of Missouri-Kansas City tournament.
“It’s been a busy three weeks of competition, but the hard work has paid off. Now we need to keep our focus and momentum as we prepare for Kentucky in a couple of weeks,” Takeda said.
Baker and Roark racked up 10 wins at the UGA tournament, including victories over nationally ranked partnerships from Dartmouth College, Harvard University, the University of Michigan and Wake Forest University. They also took home individual awards.
Baker, a senior political science major and Collegium V Honors student from Kansas City, Kan., earned 231.6 points out of 240 possible points to be chosen second out of 114 individual speaker competitors. Roark, a junior political science major from Deer Park, Texas, earned 228.5 points to take sixth place in the individual speaker awards.
Dwyer, a junior economics major from Waco, and Takeda, a sophomore international political economy major and Collegium V honors student from Denver, earned five wins and finished in ninth place overall at the UGA tournament.
“Overall, this was an outstanding tournament for our top two partnerships. They have been battling against elite programs all season and doing well, and in this tournament both of our top teams had breakthrough performances. I believe the results here will give us momentum going into the final two months of the season,” said Chris Burk, the University’s debate program director.
In the University of Missouri-Kansas City tournament, Dwyer and Takeda’s performance included defeats of teams from Baylor University, the University of Kansas, Trinity University and the University of Wyoming.
“Mayu and Wes had a great weekend and are off to a great start to the second semester,” said Scott Herndon, associate director of debate. “After this weekend’s performance I feel confident that UT Dallas will once again qualify not one, but two teams to the National Debate Tournament.”
UT Dallas will host the 65th annual National Debate Tournament, March 24-28.