Louisiana Tech is 2022 State Debate Champion

Feb 7, 2022 | Liberal Arts, Students

Louisiana Tech’s annually strong Debate Team won multiple first-place awards at late-January’s virtual Southern Forensics Tournament, which serves as the yearly state tournament for Louisiana, Mississippi, and Arkansas collegiate debate and speech teams.

Louisiana Tech Debate Team members participate in the state championship online.The biggest prize? Tech won the Louisiana state championship in debate.

“I am honored to coach these exceptional students and enter them in tournaments so they can showcase their talent across the state and beyond,” Megan Smith, Tech alumna, Communication instructor, and debate team coach, said. “They have worked very hard for this honor, and their hard work showed in their results.”

The state championship is the highest honor for the tournament and includes the total points from every event offered at the tournament. Tech competed against and beat UL-Lafayette, LSUS, Louisiana College, BPCC, and LSU.

Sophomore math major and Tech team captain Emmitt Antwine won the title of Louisiana state individual champion for the entire tournament. He earned the title by winning more points than any other Louisiana competitor.

Antwine won first place in varsity debate and extemporaneous speaking; he was also the Louisiana state champion varsity speaker.

“Our team is like a family,” Antwine said. “We each bring something to the table. I was extremely proud of the way we came together to uplift one another in each weekend round. As a result, Louisiana Tech University is your state champ.”

Other competitors who placed include the following:

  • Alec Edstrom, sophomore computer science major, Louisiana state champion in informative speaking.
  • Nate Goldstein, sophomore communication major, Louisiana state champion in debate, junior varsity division.
  • Kailee Carter, senior accounting major, second-place Louisiana state champion in debate, novice division.
  • Kendrick Kruskie, Tech alum, second-place Louisiana state champion in debate, professional division.

Goldstein and Carter were also both quarterfinalists in their divisions

Sophomore communication major Madison Plaisance, senior communication major Kara Taylor, junior engineering major Neel Patel, and junior engineering major Anthony Copeland each competed in the tournament and contributed to the points that ultimately led to the team securing the first place spot in the state.