Close Menu

Whitworth’s Arguing Bucs Take First Place in Pacific University’s Online Tournament

November 4, 2020

The Whitworth University Forensics team is celebrating its first online victory. 

The Arguing Bucs took first place, defeating 17 schools from 11 states in combined speech and debate during the Pacific University online tournament on Oct. 24 and 25. 

Whitworth defeated regional and national rivals including Arizona State University, Lewis & Clark College, Mississippi State University, the University of Alaska and Weber State University. 

The Arguing Bucs brought home 12 speech awards and 19 debate awards. Jericho Simone ’22 tied for the third best competitor at the tournament out of 111 competitors.  

“All college speech and debate programs are having to adapt to an online format, and examine speeches from a mass media perspective, paying attention to technical sound and lighting in addition to good argumentation,” says Mike Ingram, director of forensics and professor of communication studies. “I’m proud of the team’s hard work making this transition a success. COVID can hinder us, but it cannot stop us.”

In speech awards, AhLana Ames ’22 took second place in programmed oral interpretation, Nathan Cooper ’24 took third in novice extemporaneous, and Chauncella Koulibali ’22 took third in programmed oral interpretation and in poetry.

Aidan Hollister ’23 was the top speaker in the debate category, with Sanjay Philip ’21 taking third place.

Guest judges for Whitworth included Elizabeth Jacobs Bone ’17, Kat Duarte ’17, James Eccles ’17, Jacob Farrell ’19, Rebecca Korf ’15 and Travis Walker ’12.  

The team’s next online tournament is sponsored by Linfield College on Nov. 13-15. 

The Arguing Bucs are coached by Ingram, Stephanie Gibbons ’15 and Lori Welch ’90. 

About Whitworth University:

Located in Spokane, Wash., Whitworth is a private liberal arts university affiliated with the Presbyterian church. The university, which has an enrollment of more than 3,000 students, offers more than 100 undergraduate and graduate degree programs.


Trisha Coder, media relations manager, Whitworth University, (509) 777-4703 or