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Talkin’ Broncos Earn Seventh Consecutive Tournament Championship

By: Cienna Madrid   Published 9:17 pm / October 18, 2017

Rows of debators

2017 Talkin’ Broncos

The Pi Kappa Delta National Championship Boise State Speech and Debate team began their 2017-2018 season with a strong performance at the Steve Hunt Classic Oct. 13-15 in Portland, Oregon.

Competing schools included the United States Air Force Academy, University of the Pacific, Whitworth University, Colorado State University – Pueblo, San Diego State University, Williamette University, Pacific Lutheran University, Corban University, Rice University, University of California – Berkeley, William Jewel College and Texas Tech University.

The Talkin’ Broncos won first place in individual events sweepstakes, second place in debate sweepstakes and first place in overall sweepstakes.

“We graduated a lot of seniors last year and brought on only three new team members” said Manda Hicks, director of forensics. “It’s good to see our current team keeping this kind of pace and pushing themselves to be champions.”

In open public debate, Hunter Carson (senior, Nampa) was the tournament champion and the winner of the sixth-place speaker award. Both Sam Haskell (junior, Tacoma, Washington) and Daniel Gardner (senior, Twin Falls) finished as semi-finalists, with Haskell taking the first-place speaker award in open division. Lauren Peña (senior, Meridian), Tate Volbrecht (sophomore, Billings, Montana) and Carson Lloyd (freshman, Boise) all finished as quarter-finalists, with Peña winning the second-place speaker award in open division and Volbrecht winning the second-place speaker award in junior division. Madison Grady (senior, Whitefish, Montana) and Zach Hill (sophomore, Kuna) finished as octo-finalists, with Grady winning the seventh-place speaker award in open division. Other junior division speaker awards included: Ximena Bustillo (sophomore, Nampa),winning first place; Connor Johnson (sophomore, Billings, Montana), winning sixth place; and Andrew Castro (junior,White Plains, New York), winning eighth place. In British parliamentary debate, the team of Janice Witherspoon (junior, Caldwell) and Kortni Clements (junior, Meridian) finished as quarter-finalists, with Witherspoon winning the fourth-place speaker award and Clements winning the thirteenth-place speaker award.

In individual events, Witherspoon led the Talkin’ Broncos with second-place finishes in both program oral interpretation and impromptu speaking, fourth place in both prose interpretation and after dinner speaking, and fifth place in dramatic interpretation. Witherspoon took second place overall in the tournament individual events sweepstakes. Castro took first place in both program oral interpretation and dramatic interpretation, and third place in impromptu speaking. Haskell took first place in duo interpretation, third place in dramatic interpretation, and fifth place in program oral interpretation; Volbrecht took first-place in junior impromptu speaking, third place in junior extemporaneous speaking, and fourth place in persuasive speaking; Mallory Clark (senior, Boise) took first place in duo interpretation, and fourth place in program oral interpretation. Asia Miller (junior, Green River, Wyoming) took first place in informative speaking.

Other top competitors include: Hill, who took second place in junior extemporaneous speaking and fifth place in both communication analysis and persuasive speaking; Mackenzie Moss (senior, Boise) who took second place in persuasive speaking and fourth place in impromptu speaking; Bustillo, who took second place in duo interpretation and sixth place in after-dinner speaking; Carson, who took second place in informative speaking; Lloyd, who took second place in novice persuasive speaking; Hailie Johnson-Waskow (senior, Nampa), who took third place in persuasive speaking and sixth place in program oral interpretation; Elizabeth Popp (senior, Columbia, Missouri), who took third place in prose interpretation; Kaitlyn Rogers (senior, Boise), who took third place in communication analysis;  Johnson, who took third place in informative speaking; Grady, who took fourth place in extemporaneous speaking; Gardner, who took fifth place in impromptu and sixth place in prose interpretation; Kaelee Novich (sophomore, Nampa), who took fifth place in prose interpretation; Jamie Maas (senior, Meridian), who took sixth place in persuasive speaking; and Andde Mendez (senior, Nampa), who took sixth place in poetry interpretation.

The Talkin’ Broncos continue their 2017-2018 season with their first visit to the McPherson Classic hosted by Whitworth University in Spokane, Washington, Oct 21-21.

The Talkin’ Broncos are the 2017-2018 Pi Kappa Delta National Champions in Speech and Debate and are supported in part through the generosity of the Jeker Family Trust. For more information about the Talkin’ Broncos, contact Hicks at mandahicks@boisestate.edu.