The Butte College Speech and Debate 25-member team has traveled to San Francisco State University, Diablo Valley College and University of the Pacific to compete against teams from around the country and has earned numerous awards in “Parliamentary” and “Individual” events.
“This year our team consists of 25 students and two coaches, which is a lot of students for a team and just two coaches—and we have been successful. The credit goes to Stephen Ban, our co-coach and two volunteer assistants, Coach Theresa Perry at CSU, Chico and Butte College English instructor Kiara Koenig who are helping manage a success team with limited resources,” said Christina Barber, Butte College Communications Studies instructor.
In their first tournament of the year at San Francisco State University, six members of the Speech and Debate Team competed with great results as they beat teams from Chabot, San Joaquin Delta and Modesto Junior colleges in several rounds and were praised by the judge for their great sportsmanship. In Individual events, Butte College’s team members earned multiple second, third and fourth place rankings in several rounds of competition.
Eight of Butte’s team members competed against 32 teams from California, Nevada and Oregon in their second tournament of the season at Diablo Valley College (DVC) and once again garnered big wins. Kelsey Caldwell placed 1st in Oral Interpretation and Quentin Fields took three finalist trophies for “Impromptu Speaking” and Poetry events. Casey Stortroen and Scott Laczko’s earned an “Elite Eight” finalist award. It was a 4th place win for Casey Stortroen in “Novice Parli”, and a beautiful tournament silver for Addison Sage and Kelsey Caldwell for their Parli Debate. Within individual rounds, team members picked up multiple 1st through 5th place scores.
In its third tournament the Butte College team competed in parliamentary debate and individual events in one of the largest tournaments in California at University of the Pacific. This tournament drew 42 teams from all over the country from private schools, as well as public universities and state and community colleges from as far away as Colorado, Texas, and Illinois.
“Six Butte Roadrunners went head to head with the biggest, the brightest and the best and our Speech and Debate team members came home with several trophies,” said Barber.
Fields won an outstanding 3rd place and competed with his partner, Caldwell, for his first time in Parliamentary debate. Caldwell competed as a Novice against junior and varsity-level members with her Program of Oral Interpretation in a combined round and placed 2nd in her second time competing in this event. Two members traveling for the first time, Braden Danyus and Jake Moss, won two rounds of Parliamentary debate and helped their teammates’ exciting, steady climb of success.
Parliamentary debaters Stortroen and Laczko first went into the “Elite Eight” finals, and were ultimately “Quarterfinalists.” Of the many Novice Parliamentary Debaters, both Laczko and Stortroen won the honor of Speaker Points Awards, which are given for both excellence and clarity of speakers’ arguments. Storton won 16th in Speaker Points, his second consecutive win after DVC. Laczko won 13th place.
“Let’s put it in context: colleges from all over the country bring their best debaters, people who have been debating for years (even in the Novice category). Casey and Scott were attending their third debate competition ever--in their first semester of debate--and they were 13th and 16th against 84 other debaters! Scott and Casey also went 5-1 in their preliminary debates, losing only one round. It’s a phenomenal accomplishment and our Speech and Debate coaches were beaming with pride,” said Barber.
In addition to bringing home trophies, the Butte Speech and Debate Team also brings back all the soaps, lotions and shampoos from their hotel rooms and donates them to the Food Pantry at Butte College for students in need.
For information about the Butte College Speech & Debate Team, please contact Christina Barber at 893-7599 or firstname.lastname@example.org.