The Cameron University Forensics Team claimed the top honor with a first place overall sweepstakes award at the Oklahoma Intercollegiate Forensics Association (OIFA) state championship tournament. Cameron also finished first in debate sweepstakes and second in individual events sweepstakes and was the top Oklahoma school in all three categories. Twelve schools participated in the tournament.
Cameron debaters all finished with winning preliminary round records. Junior Brett Carlton, a communication major from Tulsa, and freshman Skylar Williams, a communication major from Newton, Kans., finished in second place. Carlton and Williams finished with a 4-1 record in the preliminary portion. They defeated a team from the University of Oklahoma in the quarterfinals and a team from Abilene Christian in the semi-finals before losing the final round on a 2-1 decision to a team from Hutchinson Community College.
Junior Paul Boudreaux, a business finance major from Skiatook, and senior Brenna Welch, a communication major from Owasso, finished as semi-finalists. Welch and Boudreaux were the top seed following the preliminary rounds after finishing with a 4-1 record. They defeated a team from Arkansas Tech University in the quarterfinals before losing to Hutchinson Community College on a 2-1 decision in the semi-final round. Boudreaux was awarded the top speaker award in the event, and Welch was awarded the fourth place speaker out of 38 total debaters at the tournament.
Junior Troy Flewellen, a communication major from Tulsa, and freshman Cameron Brewer, a communication major from Moore, finished as quarter-finalists. Flewellen and Brewer finished with a 3-2 record in the preliminary rounds, falling in the quarterfinals to a team from Hutchinson Community College. Flewellen was the third place overall speaker in parliamentary debate.
Cameron’s sole novice team fared well competing against far more experienced debaters. Junior Odile DeCoteau, a mathematics major from Petite Martinique Carriacou, Grenada, and junior Ashok Pandey, a communication major from Mahendranagar, Nepal, finished with a 3-2 record in the preliminary round. They finished as the 10th seed on a tie-breaker, just missing the top eight and did not get to compete in quarterfinals
Cameron debaters amassed 44 total debate sweepstakes points, placing them well ahead of the rest of the competition, as the next best Oklahoma school finished with 16 total points.
Cameron competitors claimed several awards in individual events. Welch took first place in the individual events pentathlon, in which competitors are required to enter a variety of different events. To claim victory, Welch finished first in oratory, first in prose interpretation, third in extemporaneous speaking, fourth in poetry interpretation, and fifth in programmed oral interpretation.
Flewellen was awarded second in pentathlon for his overall effort. He finished first in poetry interpretation, second in duo dramatic interpretation with partner Boudreaux, third in communication analysis and fourth in impromptu speaking. Boudreaux was awarded third in pentathlon, adding third place in programmed oral interpretation and fifth place in extemporaneous speaking to his second place finish in duo dramatic interpretation.
Other Cameron competitors also fared well. Williams finished fourth in prose interpretation and fourth in duo interpretation with partner Brewer. DeCoteau finished second in oratory. Cameron’s total effort in individual events resulted in 112 points and a second place finished.
Dan Schabot, Cameron’s Director of Forensics, is presently serving as OIFA president and was the tournament director.
Cameron team members now gear up for national tournaments in the months of March and April.
March 2, 2011