(SPOKANE, Wash.) — The Gonzaga University debate team moved up four spots from No. 14 to No. 10 in the National Debate Tournament varsity rankings following their success in the Northwest Championship Tournament, March 1-3 in Walla Walla.
Gonzaga’s top debate team of seniors Nick Bormann and Grace Saez defeated Whitman College’s top team in the final-round to capture the Northwest Championship Tournament. The victories earned Bormann, Spokane, and Saez, Las Vegas, an automatic bid to the National Debate Tournament set for March 25-April 1 at California State University at Fullerton.
Gonzaga advanced five teams to the elimination round of the Northwest Championship Tournament — more than any other school.
The new rankings, released Wednesday, are the final rankings until after the National Debate Tournament. GU debate Coach Glen Frappier said he believes another Gonzaga team may yet earn an at-large berth to the national tourney.
“We expect that our second team of Abe Corrigan and James Joseph will earn an at-large bid to the NDT,” Frappier said. No school can qualify more than three teams to the NDT, and only six schools are allowed a third team.
“Our third team of Leah Moczulski and Brent Hamilton is likely the seventh ‘third’ team in the nation and won’t be eligible to receive an invitation,” Frappier said. Gonzaga students begin spring break after classes Friday.
Following are the Top 10 collegiate teams in the NDT rankings:
1. Emory University
2. University of Kansas
3. Harvard University
4. Wake Forest University
5. Northwestern University
6. Binghamton University
7. Michigan State University
8. Dartmouth College
9. University of California at Berkeley
10. Gonzaga University