Debate team is hitting contest season

Debaters will compete in Congress next month



Junior Nicollette Arabie gets equipment set up for an online Congress competition last weekend. She placed fourth out of more than 70 debaters.

Nicollette Arabie, Editorial Team

Buffalo’s speech and debate is starting to ramp up and compete in more tournaments, specifically in Congressional Debate; regional competition for the event is in just three weeks. Members of the team competed in an online tournament on Saturday.

Sophomore Tristan Cole competed in novice extemp, trying her hand at an event that gives competitors 30 minutes to research and write a seven-minute speech on a topic they draw. Cole placed third in her room, missing advancing to semi-finals by one spot. She plans to compete again at a contest in Grandview before Thanksgiving.

Junior Nicollette Arabie competed in varsity Congress, making it to finals and placing fourth out of more than 70 competitors. It was a long day for Congress competition. The first 2-and-a-half-hour session started at 9:00 am and the third one ended after 11:00 pm. Arabie garnered six TFA points, putting her at eight for the year and only two points away from meeting one of her goals this year of making it to TFA state again.

“I’m excited for this year and the potential these students have,” coach Melonie Menefee said. “We have a relatively young team, but they are capable of making it far if they focus on what they are aiming for.”

Arabie is also working for a second Tournament of Champions bid in Congress; she earned one by making it to semi-finals at NSDA national competition in June. One more will qualify her for the national TOC contest in Lexington, Kentucky, in the spring.

“There just aren’t many TOC qualifiers around,” Menefee said. “She missed a second bid by just three spots last month. We’ve got a few more shots at it, and I know she will work hard to make her goal.”

Also working on Congress this year are junior Alyncia Jackson, who placed fifth in regional competition last year, junior Ryan Brown, who has competed in LD Debate in the past, winning district last year, and freshman Kaylen Sanchez, along with Cole. Four of the students will compete at regionals on November 15, which will be held at BHS.