The Cameron University Speech and Debate team has been crowned the state champion for the third consecutive year following the Oklahoma Intercollegiate Forensic Association’s state tournament. The Aggie team of Maryssa Crispin, Micah Elroy, Dylan Griggs and Sacred Martinez brought home 28 awards following the tournament, where they faced competitors from 10 universities.
In the interpretive event categories, Elroy was named Oklahoma Champion in both prose interpretation and impromptu haiku, winning first place in both categories. He also placed second in program oral interpretation and fifth in poetry interpretation. Elroy is a junior biology major from Duncan.
Martinez was named Oklahoma Champion in informative speaking, taking third place in the contest behind competitors from out-of-state schools. A junior biology major, the Lawton native also placed third in impromptu haiku, fourth in extemporaneous speaking and sixth in program oral interpretation.
Griggs, a junior computer science major from Lawton, placed fourth in dramatic interpretation and sixth in impromptu haiku, while Crispin earned sixth in poetry interpretation. Crispin is a junior biology major from Duncan.
In IPDA Debate, Martinez and Elroy faced one another in the finals, with Martinez earning first place as well as being named Oklahoma Champion, and Elroy ranking second. Martinez and Elroy tied for second place IPDA speaker, with Griggs earning fourth place.
The Individual Awards sweepstakes, the highest honor a student can achieve, requires competitors to participate in five interpretive events and debate. Elroy won the top prize, with Martinez claiming second place. Both competed in seven events.
Thanks to the success of the Aggies in the individual events and debate, they led the way in the team awards, placing second in team individual events open division and first place in team individual events in Oklahoma, team overall sweepstakes, team debate sweepstakes open division, and team debate sweepstakes in Oklahoma. Those results culminated in winning the top prize of the tournament, the overall sweepstakes in Oklahoma.
“The pride I have in these four competitors is immense,” says Katie Stringer, director of CU’s forensics team. “Because the state tournament also welcomed teams from outside of Oklahoma, we were able to face competitors from schools that we would not normally see thanks to the virtual format. Certainly, we would love to return to in-person competitions, but competing virtually has in some ways allowed our team members to fine-tune their skills. They have each put in countless hours of preparation, and it’s rewarding to see that their efforts brought such outstanding results.”