The WKU Forensics Team placed second at the American Forensic Association National Individual Events Tournament championship, hosted this year by Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois, during the March 31-April 3 weekend.
WKU sent 26 competitors with a total of 66 entries to the national tournament. Of the 66 total entries, 38 advanced to quarterfinal rounds, 24 advanced to the semifinal round, and 10 events made it to the final rounds of competition. Last year, the team fielded 37 quarterfinalists and 25 semifinalists.
WKU placed second in team sweepstakes, and the University of Texas at Austin placed first. George Mason University placed third. Other top 10 schools included Bradley University, the University of Alabama, the University of Nebraska at Omaha, Illinois State University, the University of Nebraska at Lincoln, Concordia University Irvine and Wiley College. The AFA National Individual Events Tournament hosted 73 schools this year, with nearly 1,395 entries.
WKU seniors Camille Acosta of El Paso, Texas, and Lauren Sledge-Groves of Bowling Green were recognized as AFA All Americans for their work in the community, as scholars and as leaders. One school receiving two such awards is a rare achievement. Also, three members of the team were recognized for excellence across several events at the tournament, called the pentathlon award: Andrea Ambam received third, Lily Nellans received 16th and Brent O’Connor received 18th.
“I am incredibly proud of the effort of our students. The contest for the championship was impossibly tight, with a point difference of about 1 percent,” said WKU Director of Forensics Ganer Newman. “It’s understandable to feel a level of disappointment when your team falls short of a championship by such a slim margin. However, I know our students prepared like champions all season and they gave their all every single round of this tournament. I’m indescribably proud of the students for their work and what they accomplished this weekend! Congratulations to the University of Texas at Austin for their success. We will now direct our focus on the defending our titles at the National Forensic Association championship tournament. Our students are poised to build on the success of this weekend and keep the championship on The Hill!”
The team is preparing for the final national tournament, the National Forensic Association National Speech and Debate Tournament, which will be held next week at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.
Contact: Ganer Newman, (270) 745-6340