Tulane Wins Morehouse to Open Season

The Tulane University Debate Team opened the 2017-18 season with a win at Morehouse College’s annual King Classic, the largest National Parliamentary Debate Association (NPDA) tournament yet hosted at Morehouse. Boasting 38 teams from 10 schools in two divisions (open and novice), the tournament’s competition was spirited and intense. After five preliminary rounds, one Tulane team “broke” to quarterfinals in the open division, while another one and a half teams broke in novice.

Uma Kumar-Montei and her partner from Morehouse, Jordan Davis, won their novice quarterfinal, while Claire Kueffner and Madison Sullivan prevailed in their open quarter. Kueffner and Sullivan went on to win the semifinal and carry a narrow 3-2 victory in the final round against Arkansas State.

Here are the full results for Tulane at the tournament:
Claire Kueffner & Madison Sullivan – Tournament Champions
Claire Kueffner – 2nd Speaker
Madison Sullivan – 7th Speaker*
Uma Kumar-Montei & Jordan Davis [Morehouse] – 4th Novice Team
Quinn Burke & Austin Yde – 8th Novice Team
Uma Kumar-Montei – 3rd Novice Speaker
Charlie Mendoza – 8th Novice Speaker
Claire Wynne – 10th Novice Speaker
Tulane University – 2nd Sweepstakes

*Sullivan, a novice, competed in the open division, and was not awarded a novice speaker award since she was in the top ten in open.

The win for Kueffner, a senior, was her second tournament victory at Morehouse, having won in 2015 with Tim DeCotis. Her partner this year, Sullivan, was competing in her first parliamentary debate tournament ever.

Tulane will look to build on this success at NPDA tournaments across the south in the coming months as the team continues to train one of the largest and most promising novice classes in the team’s history. TU will host its first in-house tournament of the year on Saturday, September 30th. If you’re interested in joining the team, please contact President Claire Kueffner at ckueffne@tulane.edu!

Tulane reached last year’s NPDA National Quarterfinals and also competes occasionally on the American Parliamentary Debate Association (APDA) circuit. Tulane finished last year ranked 47th overall in NPDA and 26th in APDA. Tulane finished 26th in the NPDA rankings in 2015-16, when they also broke to outrounds at NPDA Nationals.

Tulane debaters and coaches pose with trophies in front of the Morehouse College sign outside Brawley Hall. Left to right: Quinn Burke, Christopher Hoffler, Matthew Weber, Alex Jubb, Cassidy Moon, Storey Clayton, Charlie Mendoza, Claire Wynne, Uma Kumar-Montei, Jasmine Davidson, Madison Sullivan, Ayanna Baker, Claire Kueffner, Amy Bowsher, and Austin Yde.