Two National Champions, 20 Awards for McKendree Speech and Debate!

Spencer Marcum, Hannah Zickefoose Win Pi Kappa Delta Top Honors 

(LEBANON, Ill., March 17, 2015) — The McKendree University speech and debate team opened its nationals season with two national championships and 20 other awards at the Pi Kappa Delta (PKD) National Tournament hosted by Ohio University on March 11-15. Seventy-nine colleges and universities, including the University of Kentucky, Pacific Lutheran University and the University of Texas attended the tournament. Representing McKendree were seniors Rebecca Blake, Josh Fleming and Spencer Marcum; sophomore Katie Reining; and first-years Emeri Farnam, Beth Graham, Adam Kaul, Briar North and Hannah Zickefoose.

“From top to bottom this was a successful weekend,” said Dr. Stephen Hagan, assistant speech coach. “Two national champions, one a first-year and one a senior, show that our future is as bright as the present.”

In poetry, Marcum won all of his preliminary rounds and was recognized as Top Superior and the PKD national champion. In addition, he took 4th Superior in duo (with Blake), Excellent in prose and drama, and Good in programmed oral interpretation. Zickefoose swept her preliminary rounds in after dinner speaking and took Top Superior and was the PKD national champion. She also was named Good in duo (with Farnam), impromptu, and programmed oral interpretation. Reining won 4th Superior in informative speaking. Fleming took 6th Superior in programmed oral interpretation and Good in impromptu, drama, and prose.

Blake, along with her 4th Superior in duo, took Excellent in after dinner speaking and Good in drama. North was Excellent in informative, while taking Good in impromptu and drama. Farnam was Good in persuasion as well as duo with Zickefoose.

In Lincoln-Douglas debate, Graham went 4-2 and received third place and a rating of Excellent. In alumni oral interpretation showcase, coaches Blasdel and Hagan took second place and received a rating of Excellent. Finally, McKendree University took Excellent in school sweepstakes.

McKendree speech and debate competes at the National Parliamentary Debate Association Championship Tournament, March 15-17.


 Speech & Debate Team

McKendree University speech and debate team members with their awards from the Pi Kappa Delta national tournament: front row, Briar North, Spencer Marcum and Beth Graham; back row, Emeri Farnam, Adam Kaul, Josh Fleming, Rebecca Blake, Hannah Zickefoose and Katie Reining.