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UW-Eau Claire Forensics Team Wins State Tournament for 13th Year

RELEASED: March 1, 2005

EAU CLAIRE — For the 13th year in a row, the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire forensics team claimed the championship at the Wisconsin State Intercollegiate Forensics Tournament held on the Ripon College campus Feb. 9-20. UW-Eau Claire took first place with 204 points, Ripon College took second place with 113 points, and UW-Madison took third place with 80 points.

In addition to the team win, UW-Eau Claire will be sending two of its team members, senior Kelly Bender, New London, and junior Betsy Schroeder, Le Center, Minn., to the Interstate Oratory Contest in Boston, Mass. According to Karen Morris, director of UW-Eau Claire forensics, each state is allowed to send two representatives to the contest, and this is also the thirteenth year in a row that both representatives have come from UW-Eau Claire.

"Winning the state tournament is a team goal set by the team at the beginning of each season," said Morris. "The Interstate Oratory Contest is one of my favorite tournaments and I am so excited when we qualify students for this tournament."

Individual results for the tournament are as follows:

Bender placed first in oratory, which qualified her for Interstate. Bender also placed first in communication analysis, second in after-dinner speaking and fifth in informative speaking.

Senior Chris Conklin, Green Bay, placed first in prose interpretation and impromptu speaking, second in dramatic interpretation and third in extemporaneous speaking and after-dinner speaking.

Senior Andy Bevernitz, Clintonville, took first place in after-dinner speaking and second place in prose interpretation. Bevernitz and sophomore Christine Zani, Hurley, placed fourth in duo interpretation.

Sophomore Amy Oldakowski, Sobieski, placed first in informative speaking, second in extemporaneous speaking and impromptu speaking and fifth in oratory (persuasion).

Freshman Hilary Rasmussen, Eau Claire, took first place in dramatic interpretation, second in poetry interpretation and third in informative speaking. Rasmussen and Bevernitz placed third in duo interpretation, qualifying that event for the National Forensics Association tournament.

Schroeder placed second in oratory, qualifying her for Interstate. She also placed sixth in extemporaneous speaking and after-dinner speaking.

Junior Abby Czeskleba, Middleton, took fourth place in after-dinner speaking.

In individual sweepstakes, Conklin took first place, Bender took third, Rasmussen placed fourth, Oldakowski placed fifth and Bevernitz took sixth place.

"The forensics team's recent win at Ripon College is excellent evidence of the quality of our students at UW-Eau Claire and their coaches in the department of communication and journalism," commented Karen Kremer, chair of the communication and journalism department. "It also is an indication of what we value at UW-Eau Claire."

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AK/NW

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