Truman Forensics Succeeds at Legendary Gorlok Tournament
The Truman State University speech and debate team brought home three individual championships, including the individual sweepstakes championship, and an overall second place team award at the “Gorlok Gala” January 27-29. Webster University, home of the Gorloks, invited 40 schools to compete at the tournament in St. Louis, Missouri, making it one of the largest forensics tournaments in the central United States.
Senior Andrew Grojean (Blue Springs, MO) led the individual events competitors by seizing the individual sweepstakes championship. This is the second year in a row that Grojean has won the title. Grojean captured the championship by placing second in informative speaking and third in dramatic interpretation. Grojean and his partner, sophomore A.J. Taula (Independence, MO) also received second in duo interpretation.
Junior Jessica Petrie (Millstadt, IL) also took home several championship titles, including first place in impromptu speaking and communication analysis. Petrie placed second in extemporaneous speaking as well, while sophomore Kristen Wright (Liberty, MO) earned fifth in extemporaneous speaking.
In addition to his duo award, Taula earned fourth place in poetry interpretation. Taula also received an excellence award—placing him in the top 30% of competitors—in both prose interpretation and dramatic interpretation. Sophomore Arielle Long-Seabra (Blue Springs, MO) received an excellence award in dramatic interpretation. All of these awards contributed to the team earning second place overall for the individual events portion of the competition.
In Lincoln-Douglas debate, sophomore Nick Gorman (Kansas City, MO) led the team. In a field of 56 competitors, Gorman advanced to the semifinal round, placing him in the top four debaters. Though Gorman did not advance to the finals, he felt good about his performance overall.
“I could not have done it without the team and all the hard work everyone puts in during practices. Through a combination of good fortune and teamwork, I was able to be successful and capitalize on that work,” Gorman said.
Sophomores Kristen Wright and Kory Anderson (St. Louis, MO) also made it into elimination rounds of Lincoln-Douglas debate, competing in double-octofinal rounds.
The team is now preparing for the state championship tournament, to be held at Truman February 17 & 18. Anyone interested in watching or helping with the tournament should contact Director of Forensics Kristi Scholten at firstname.lastname@example.org.