Truman Forensics Students Capture Three Championships at Creighton Tournament

A team of 20 members from the Truman Forensic Union captured three separate top honors along with several other awards at the Nebraska Double-Up tournaments hosted at Creighton University Oct. 24-26.

The team topped their list of awards with the tournament championship in debate sweepstakes and a second place finish in overall (combined debate and individual events) sweepstakes for the weekend.  

In parliamentary debate, Truman secured two additional championships when junior Mark Buchheit and senior Chris Girouard took the tournament championship in the open division. Buchheit was also ranked top speaker in the tournament.

In other open division parliamentary debate competition, the team of sophomore Dylan Clark and freshman Ben Reid reached semifinals and the team of sophomores Sarah Backhaus and Christian Johns reached octafinals. In the junior division, junior Susan Presley and sophomore Mehdi Zaidi reached the quarterfinal round. Backhaus was ranked eighth speaker in the open division, while Girouard was ranked 10th.

In individual speaking competition, freshman Darius Taylor took home sixth place in poetry interpretation in the Saturday portion of the tournament, and fifth place in the Sunday portion. Freshman Erin Williamson took sixth in informative speaking and freshman Elizabeth Hatting took fourth in persuasive speaking. In the Lincoln-Douglas debate, Reid reached the quarterfinals, while Johns was ranked fourth speaker and Backhaus was ranked fifth speaker.

Taylor and Williamson’s placements qualify them to compete in their respective events at the National Forensic Association championships in April. They join Hatting, Reid and two additional teammates who have already earned previously announced qualifications.

The Truman Forensic Union is a co-curricular program open to any interested students, regardless of major or prior experience. For more information contact the Director of Forensics at 785.5677 or

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