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WKU Forensics Team wins University of Alabama Tournament, WKU senior wins Holle Award, $10,000 prize

WKU senior Kelly Lingen won the Holle Award for Excellence in Forensic Competition and a...
WKU senior Kelly Lingen won the Holle Award for Excellence in Forensic Competition and a $10,000 prize in a tournament hosted by the University of Alabama.(WKU)
Published: Oct. 14, 2021 at 10:05 AM CDT
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BOWLING GREEN, Ky. - The Western Kentucky University Forensics Team continued its fast start to the season by taking first place in sweepstakes at the Dr. Frank Thompson Jr. Crimson Classic hosted virtually the weekend of October 9-10. The team also took top honors at the season’s first online asynchronous tournament series (OATS 1) and third in debate sweepstakes at the Steve Hunt Classic, hosted by Lewis and Clark College.

At the Crimson Classic, senior Kelly Lingen won individual sweepstakes earning her the Holle Award for Excellence in Forensic Competition. Named after Everett Holle, a graduate of the University of Alabama and a 40-year veteran of the television industry, the Holle Award for Excellence in Forensic Competition is given to the student who earns the most points across five different events in each of the three genres of competitive public speaking: interpretation of literature, public address, and limited preparation. By winning the Holle Award, Lingen will receive a $10,000 prize.

The team will compete this weekend at the Cyber Falcon, hosted by Bowling Green State University.

Results from OATS 1

  • After Dinner Speaking: Racheal Akinbayo of Houston, Texas, 3rd; Christian Butterfield of Bowling Green, Kentucky, 5th; Shainna Ralston of Eldorado, Illinois, 6th.
  • Communication Analysis: Kellin Robinson of Roseville, Minnesota, 2nd; Caitlyn Woitena of Houston, Texas, 2nd.
  • Dramatic Interpretation: Caitlyn Woitena, 1st; Kellin Robinson, 2nd; Shainna Ralston, 4th; Samantha Sallee of Danville, Kentucky, 5th; Jaleon Brown of Raytown, Missouri, 6th.
  • Duo Interpretation: Danielle Williams of Goodlettsville, Tennessee, and Jaleon Brown, 1st; Rashon Leday of Lafayette, Louisiana, and Taylor Mier of Youngsville, Louisiana, 2nd.
  • Extemporaneous Speaking: Tani Washington of Henrico, Virginia, 1st; Madelynn Einhorn of Oakwood, Ohio, 3rd; Christian Butterfield, 5th; Tess Welch of Houston, Texas, 6th; Miles Morton of Sherman Oaks, California, 7th.
  • Impromptu Speaking: Christian Butterfield, 1st; Tess Welch, 2nd; Joey Eberle of Maple Grove, Minnesota, 3rd; Antonina Clementi of Lafayette, Louisiana, 4th; Miles Morton, 6th.
  • Informative Speaking: Tani Washington, 2nd; Kelly Lingen of Lakeville, Minnesota, 3rd.
  • Poetry Interpretation: Kelly Lingen, 2nd; Taylor Mier, 3rd.
  • Program Oral Interpretation: Tani Washington, 3rd.
  • Prose Interpretation: Reese Johnson of Burnsville, Minnesota, 1st; Imanii Giles of Hodgenville, Kentucky, 3rd; Shainna Ralston, 4th; Dakota Perry of Morehead, Kentucky, 6th.

Results from Crimson Classic

  • After Dinner Speaking: Shainna Ralston, 1st; Christian Butterfield, 2nd; Racheal Akinbayo of Houston, Texas, 4th.
  • Communication Analysis: Caitlyn Woitena, 1st; Kellin Robinson, 3rd.
  • Dramatic Interpretation: Caitlyn Woitena, 1st; Shainna Ralston, 2nd; Samantha Sallee, 3rd; Jaleon Brown, 4th; Collin Tuerk of Morehead, Kentucky, 5th.
  • Duo Interpretation: Rashon Leday and Taylor Mier, 1st; Jaleon Brown and Danielle Williams, 2nd.
  • Extemporaneous Speaking: Christian Butterfield, 2nd.
  • Impromptu Speaking: Andre Swai of Springfield, Missouri, 3rd; Christian Butterfield, 4th.
  • Informative Speaking: Tani Washington, 1st; Caitlyn Woitena, 2nd; Kelly Lingen, 3rd.
  • Persuasive Speaking: Kelly Lingen, 3rd.
  • Poetry Interpretation: Kelly Lingen, 2nd; Taylor Mier, 3rd.
  • Program Oral Interpretation: Tani Washington, 1st.
  • Prose Interpretation: Reese Johnson, 1st; Shainna Ralston, 2nd; Kelly Lingen, 4th.

Results from Steve Hunt Classic

  • Open Lincoln Douglas Debate: Tanya Prabhakar of Danville, California, Top 8; Miles Morton, Top 10.
  • Junior Lincoln Douglas Debate: Antonina Clementi of Lafayette, Louisiana, Co-Champion; Avery Lenihan of Florence, Kentucky, Co-Champion.
  • Novice Lincoln Douglas Debate: Imam Brula of Bowling Green, Kentucky, Co-Champion; Hannah Johnson of Bowling Green, Kentucky, Co-Champion.
  • Open Lincoln Douglas Debate Speakers: Tanya Prabhakar, 5th; Miles Morton, 8th.
  • Junior Lincoln Douglas Debate Speakers: Avery Lenihan, 4th; Antonina Clementi, 5th.
  • Novice Lincoln Debate Speakers: Hannah Jones, 1st.

WKU Forensics Team senior Kelly Lingen won the Holle Award for Excellence in Forensic Competition and a $10,000 prize this past weekend in the Crimson Classic, a virtual competition hosted by the University of Alabama.

Named after Everett Holle, a graduate of the University of Alabama and a 40-year veteran of the television industry, the Holle Award is given to the student who earns the most points across five different events in each of the three genres of competitive public speaking: interpretation of literature, public address, and limited preparation.

Lingen, a Creative Writing major from Minneapolis, Minnesota, expressed her gratitude for the unique opportunity. “I’d like to thank the Holle Family Foundation for supporting creativity in forensics. This has been the culmination of years of hard work and love for the activity. I am truly honored to receive this award and incredibly grateful for all of the opportunities forensics has given me.”

WKU Director of Forensics Ganer Newman expressed pride in Lingen’s achievements. “It was inspiring watching all the effort Kelly poured into her performances, including learning a brand-new event, to win the competition. Forensics teaches students invaluable communication skills. However, the unique cash prize offered by the Holle Family Foundation gave new meaning to the phrase ‘hard work pays off.’”

The WKU team will compete this weekend in a competition hosted by Bowling Green State University. WKU students interested in joining the forensics program are encouraged to contact director Ganer Newman at ganer.newman@wku.edu for more information.

More: Check out the WKU Forensics Facebook page or follow @wkuforensics and @DebateWku on Twitter.