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MSU Debate advances to elimination rounds in California tournaments

By Stephanie Cepak

The Michigan State University Debate Team advanced to the elimination rounds in back-to-back tournaments held in California recently.

The debates were held Jan. 3-5 at the University of Southern California and Jan. 7-9 at California State University, Fullerton.

At USC, all three, two-person MSU teams advanced to the elimination rounds.

Placing 5th at the tournament were Honors College members Kaavya Ramesh, an international relations, Chinese, comparative cultures and politics senior, and Tyler Thur, an international relations sophomore.

The teams of international relations junior Jack Caporal and international relations junior Quinn Zemel, as well as of international relations junior Aniela Butler and math sophomore Margaret Strong , cleared the USC tournament with 4-2 records, respectively.

At USC, 116, two-person teams competed from 42 colleges.

At Fullerton, Ramesh and Thur placed in the top eight out of 115, two-person teams representing 42 colleges.

Between the two California tournaments, MSU recorded wins against Harvard University, Cornell University, Emory University, the University of California-Berkeley, New York University, the University of Kansas, the University of Kentucky, the University of Oklahoma, and Wake Forest University.

As a squad, MSU had an overall winning record in five debates against the University of Michigan.

“The MSU Debate Team kicked off the spring semester a bit early with back-to-back tournaments in California,” said Debate Head Coach Will Repko. “Overall, our teams performed well at both, advancing to the elimination rounds and scoring strong wins against Harvard University, the University of Michigan, and others.”

The MSU Debate Team is a part of the Honors College. For more information, go to

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