Rams’ Debate Team Takes Home Gold and Bronze at Long Beach Invitational Tournament
March 8, 2017
The Fresno City College Forensics debate team won gold and bronze medals at the 2017 PSCFA “Char Arnold” spring championship in Long Beach during the weekend of Feb. 24 to 26.
Students Brandon McQueen, Jeremy Ott, Jordan Popps and Briana Bailey won bronze in the novice category, and Alexis O’Casey and Edward Smith took bronze in the open category.
In the junior category, the team of Hunter Radford and Matthew Cuevas won gold, and Radford won sixth place in speaker awards.
The Forensics team took 13 students and three coaches to the regional championship that included 34 schools. The schools range from two-year colleges to four-year universities.
FCC students partnered up and competed in three different categories — Junior Parliamentary, Novice Parliamentary and Open Parliamentary.
“Only having 20 minutes to prepare for a debate, while having six of them in a day can become really challenging,” Radford said. “It’s hard to debate against seniors from a four-year college, but fortunately, our coach prepares us very well.”
Radford also said he wanted to recognize his partner Cuevas for competing at the highest level and for being “vital in our success.”
Coach Eric Fletcher and assistant coaches Dan Scott and Cyndie Luna run the program which has between 70 and 90 students competing in an intramural league. The coaches prepare the students to perform at the highest level.
“This year the kids worked hard and it finally paid off,” Fletcher said.
“They [students] have to be very knowledgeable on everything that’s going on,” Fletcher said. “And [they] need to look at both angles because they don’t get to choose which side to be on.”
The forensics team will be unable to attend the state tournament in Woodland Hills due to budget constraints and debater availability.