Powered by a strong semester-ending performance by junior Madelynn Einhorn, the Western Kentucky forensics team captured first place in Lincoln-Douglas Debate, first speaker and the overall sweepstakes trophy at the Redbird, a virtual tournament hosted by Illinois State University on Oct. 14-15.

WKU won debates against the University of Tulsa, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and a final-round match against Hillsdale College. In team sweepstakes, WKU finished ahead of Lafayette College and Washburn University.

WKU also placed second in team sweepstakes at the Fall District VI Qualifying Tournament for the American Forensics Association National Speech Tournament hosted virtually by the University of Florida. The tournament is an opportunity for students to place highly and receive an automatic invitation to the National Speech Tournament in April. Beyond finishing high as a team, eight freshmen on the WKU forensics team qualified in events to the national tournament.

Results from the Redbird are:

  • Lincoln-Douglas Debate: Madelynn Einhorn of Oakwood, Ohio, first; Isaac Keller of Kansas City, Mo., quarterfinals; Ben Hanson of Louisville, quarterfinals; and Miles Morton of Los Angeles, double-octofinals.
  • Lincoln-Douglas Debate Speaker: Madelynn Einhorn, first; and Ben Hanson, fourth.

Results from the District VI Qualifier are:

  • Dramatic Interpretation: Samantha Sallee of Danville, first.
  • Extemporaneous Speaking: Tani Washington of Henrico, Va., fourth; and Joey Eberle of Maple Grove, Minn., fifth.
  • Informative Speaking: Naomi Desrosiers of Bowling Green, second.
  • Persuasive Speaking: Autumn Howard of Hendersonville, Tenn., first.
  • Poetry Interpretation: Tani Washington, first; Stefani Giles of Hodgenville, second; and Reggie Jefferson of Houston, Texas, fourth.
  • Prose Interpretation: Rashon Leday of Lafayette, La., third; and Jo Headrick of Wadsworth, Ohio, fifth.

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