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University of the Cumberlands sweeps awards at Transylvania University

WILLIAMSBURG, Ky. – Seventeen members of University of the Cumberlands’ Speech and Debate Team won convincing victories at the Transylvania University Tournament held on January 26th and 27th. The school competed against ten schools from four states, including the University of Indianapolis, Berea, Butler University, Marietta and Transylvania.

Overall, coach Jay Bourne was pleased with the team’s performance. “To place first overall in both individual events and debate, you can’t do any better than that. And this is the first time that I can remember our debate team closing out the final round—having both of the top two teams. We won a lot of awards, and I think we are positioning ourselves well for the state tournament in three weeks,” he said.

In the debate portion of the tournament, the final round had two Cumberlands teams and both were declared the champions of the tournament. Cumberlands students who won were Sara Straub of Florence, Ky., Justin Lowe of Mt. Washington, Ky., Jamie Gregory of Elkhart, Ind., and Tim Riley of Georgetown, Ky.

Additionally, Cumberlands won six of the 10 speaking awards. Justin Lowe received tenth place speaker, Danny Lunsford of Harlan, Ky., placed ninth, Jamie Gregory placed sixth, Sara Straub placed fourth, Andy Wolfe was the runner-up and Tim Riley was the top debate speaker at the tournament. Additionally, Chris Felder and Taylor Bowman, both of Detroit, Mich., contributed to the team points.

In individual events, Tim Riley was the tournament champion in informative speaking. Joe Owens of Hazard, Ky., placed second in pentathlon, was the tournament champion in dramatic interpretation, placed second in after dinner speaking, third in program oral interpretation and fifth in duo interpretation.

Ashley Renee Honnold of Williamsburg, Ky., placed sixth in pentathlon, fifth in poetry, fifth in after dinner speaking and second in duo interpretation. Ellie Rink was tournament champion in duo interpretation with Laura Bradford, and placed fifth in prose interpretation. Chris Felder placed fourth in program oral interpretation and third in poetry interpretation. Jamie Gregory placed fifth in duo with Joe Owens and second in duo with Ashley Renee Honnold. In impromptu speaking, Danny Lunsford placed third, Andy Wolfe placed fourth, and Justin Lowe placed seventh. Kelly Mason and Candida Hall also contributed to team sweeps points.