Rio Hondo College Newspaper

El Paisano

Rio Hondo College Newspaper

El Paisano

Rio Hondo College Newspaper

El Paisano

RHC teams advance in Spring tournaments

Rio Hondo College’s forensics speech and debate team has been making big advancements in multiple tournaments since the beginning of the year. Rio Hondo’s debate squad has participated in two tournaments in February and three in January. The most recent tournament was the 2015 Taber Venitsky at Cerritos College on Feb. 13 and 15.

Rio Hondo competed in Parliamentary Debate on Friday, Feb. 13, with seven teams. The teams that consisted of Christopher Rodriguez with Kimberly Valencia, and Caesar Sanchez with Alex Cadena, won bronze medals in the senior division. In the novice division, the team of Eddie Verdugo and Melissa De Leon won a gold medal.

On Sunday, Feb.15, the teams competed in the International Public Debate Association style of debate with 10 competitors. Rio Hondo’s Patricia Hughes made it into the semifinal round in the novice division. In the senior division, Pedro Huerta made it into the quarterfinal round and Jose Larios made it into the octafinal round.

In the first weekend of February, Rio Hondo competed at the 2015 Golden Cowboy. The two day tournament was hosted on Feb.7 and 8 at Glendale Community College the first day, then California State University Los Angeles the second. Rio Hondo brought home a total of eight awards over the course of both days.

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On the first day, Pedro Huerta received 6th place, Alex Cadena took 5th, and Jose Larios achieved 3rd in the final round of Extemporaneous Speaking. The second day showed bigger results for Rio Hondo, Ceasar Sanchez achieved 3rd and Jose Larios won 2nd place in Extemporaneous Speaking. Alex Cadena took 5th place in Impromptu Speaking.

In Public Forum Debate, Daniel Ybarra and Samantha Recinos won 2nd place and Ceasar Sanchez and Alex Cadena achieved 3rd.

This tournament had a positive impact on the team’s morale. “I was so excited when it was just me and another person on stage,” commented Larios. Golden Cowboy introduced Rio Hondo to the public forum style of debating.

Sanchez spoke on the impact of his success, “It was really fun, and knowing our skills can apply to any style of debate is encouraging.” Rio Hondo had three tournaments in January alone. The competition consisted of some of the best teams in the country. This was the first year Rio Hondo made an appearance in the Mile High Swing Tournament at the University of Utah, in Salt Lake City, on Jan. 8, 9, 10, and 11.

It was two full tournaments back to back and there were almost 100 different teams entered. This competition had the best-ranked four-year universities in Forensics from around the nation. Rio Hondo went head to head with these school’s best competitors. The competition was tough, however Rio’s team debated well and fought hard in every round. Utah’s tournament showed students a glimpse of the forensics opportunities at four year universities.

The next tournament was Close to the Coast at Orange Coast Community College, in Costa Mesa on Jan. 24, and 25. On the first day, Felix Rodriguez and Andrew Perez earned a bronze medal in Parliamentary Debate. The next day, Samantha Recinos won a gold medal, and Andrew Perez and Kimberly Valencia received a bronze medal. The following weekend Rio Hondo competed in the Winter at the Beach Tournament at California State University Long Beach on Jan. 30 and 31.

The competition was mixed between two year and four year universities. The competition was tough but Rio Hondo’s team takes the challenge with excitement. Team member, Daniel Ybarra, saw the level of competition as reasons to improve, “I don’t walk away from rounds feeling defeated. Each round is a learning tool for the next.”

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