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Forensics starts strong in new tournament season

September 11th, 2017

NORTH NEWTON, KAN. – The Bethel College forensics team got off to a strong start with good showings in their first tournaments of the 2016'17 season.

Emily Kondziola, sophomore from North Newton, was the Thresher squad representative to the Once a Bearcat Tournament at Northwest Missouri State University, Maryville, Sept. 24-25. Bethel was one of nine schools competing.

On the first day, Kondziola finished 4th in Impromptu Speaking and on the second day, 4th in both Impromptu and Extemporaneous Speaking.

“Emily, as the sole Bethel competitor, also won the Quality Award for the second tournament, as well as the Quality Award for the overall weekend,” said Mallory Marsh, Bethel head forensics coach. “The Quality Award is determined by taking the total points earned by a team divided by the total entries for the team.”

Kondziola and Jacob Miller, senior from Westmoreland, traveled to Manhattan for the second day of the BuffCats Swing Tournament, Oct. 2, hosted by West Texas A&M University. Bethel was among 11 schools in the tournament.

Miller took 5th in both Communication Analysis and Informative Speaking, while Kondziola was 6th in Informative Speaking.

A larger Thresher squad traveled to Poteau, Oklahoma, for the Carl Albert State College Tournament Oct. 8-9, where Bethel was one of 12 schools competing.

Miller had an outstanding tournament, with three 1st-place finishes: in After Dinner Speaking (ADS) on Day 1 and in Communication Analysis (CA) and Impromptu Speaking on Day 2 (after starting the tournament by taking 2nd in CA and 4th in Impromptu on Day 1). On Day 2, he was 2nd in both ADS and Program Oral Interpretation (POI).

Clinton Unruh, senior from Newton, had back-to-back 1st-place finishes in Extemporaneous Speaking. In addition, he took 5th in Impromptu on Day 1and 3rd in Informative Speaking on Day 2.

Shekhinah Jones, junior from Salina, was 2nd in Poetry Interpretation on Day 1 and 4th on Day 2, also finishing 4th in POI on Day 1.

Kondziola took 2nd in Extemporaneous and 3rd in Informative on Day 1, along with 2nd in both events on Day 2 plus 2nd in Impromptu.

Candy Dao, sophomore from Salina, finished 4th in Prose Interpretation and 5th in Dramatic Interpretation on Day 1, and 3rd in Dramatic Interpretation on Day 2.

Bethel earned the 2nd-placeTeam Sweeps award for both days of the tournament.

Bethel College is the only private college in Kansas listed in the analysis of top colleges and universities, the Washington Monthly National Universities-Liberal Arts section and the National Liberal Arts College category of U.S. News & World Report, all for 2016'17. The four-year liberal arts college is affiliated with Mennonite Church USA. For more information, see

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As the first Mennonite college founded in North America, Bethel College celebrates a tradition of progressive Christian liberal arts education, diversity within community, and lifelong learning.