Puget Sound High School Invitational

2023 — Tacoma, WA/US

Tournament Invite

Scskmbsc45010110111410_Page_6Dear Director of Forensics,

The Washington Alpha Chapter of Pi Kappa Delta National Forensics Honorary and the Communication Studies Department at the University of Puget Sound invite you and your students to participate in the 88th Puget Sound High School Forensics Tournament, January 6th-7th, 2023.

We are excited to bring back this important and vibrant tournament and we continue to receive to receive a Semi-Finals Lincoln Douglas Debate bid, a Semi-Finals Silver Public Forum bid, and Final Gold Public Forum bid to the Tournament of Champions. We continue to be a bid tournament for Individual Events. We are honored that the TOC recognized the excellent competition of the region and the tournament as a site where such excellence is demonstrated.

The tournament will be held in-person on the campus of the University of Puget Sound. All tabulation and balloting will occur via www.tabroom.com. You must register on this site. All judges must also have accounts with linked email addresses for use with online balloting. Please ensure all judges are ready to use the online system. If you have difficulties registering, please contact mmfrank@pugetsound.edu. Invoices will also be available through tabroom.com. If you have not used the site in the past, you will need to sign up.

We do not plan to offer C-X debate this year given the low numbers.

Enclosed with this letter please find documents on:

  • General Information, Tournament Speech Statement, Explanation of Entry Fees, Tournament Schedule, Registration information, Puget Sound Program and Scholarship Information.

We hope you will join us in January for a friendly and competitive tournament experience that celebrates the University of Puget Sound's commitment to excellence in forensics education.


Derek Buescher Madyson Frank

Director of Forensics Debate Coach/Tournament Director

General Information

Please note that coaches and administrators are responsible for knowing the rules of entry for this tournament.

Registration: You must register on-line at www.tabroom.com. Only in the most extraordinary of circumstances we will accept other forms of registration.
  • Entry Deadline: Tuesday, January 3, 5:00 PM Pacific Time.
  • Drop Deadline: Wednesday, January 4, 11:00 PM Pacific Time. After this deadline, fees will be calculated and all drops will be charged full entry fees.
  • If necessary, you may email changes to your registration via tabroom.com. Please email changes as soon as you know them, but check www.tabroom.com first to see if you can enter the changes yourself.
  • Confirmation of registration will be online. All of your information should be available on www.tabroom.com. Please do not wait until Friday morning when ballots are being distributed to make changes except in unusual circumstances.
  • Tabroom.com invoices are not official invoices until we have posted that they are correct. Please do not use these invoices to make payments until we notify programs they have been processed and are ready for use as tabroom.com is may be incorrect with its calculations. It is the responsibility of coaches/directors to file appropriate payment to their accounting offices.

Entry Information:

All events will be live and in-person events. We will not be offering recorded or asynchronous speech or debate.

  • Lincoln-Douglas Debate:
    • An L-D entry is defined as a single individual prepared to debate both sides.
    • All L-D rounds will be double-flighted.
  • Public Forum Debate:
    • All public forum debates will be double-flighted.
    • No one person, or "maverick" teams are allowed except in limited basis in the event a partner is ill, e.g. for not more than 2 rounds. Maverick teams are not permitted in elimination debates.
  • Congressional Debate:
    • Entries will be Open (any student) and Novice. If houses reach more than ~16 students we will split chambers as necessary. We will use the spring docket of congress bills when available via tabroom.
  • Individual Events:
    • Students may triple enter, but are responsible for making all of their rounds on time.
    • Students may enter only one duo interpretation.
  • Students may enter only one kind of debate or congress.
Divisions for Public Forum, and LD Debate:
  • Novice division is open to students who have no previous experience in debate prior to the current competitive year; or have six or less rounds of debate competition at invitational, league, or district competition prior to the current competitive year; and have not placed first through fourth in novice or above debate competition at two tournaments.
  • Junior division is open to those students in their first or second year of competition who have not placed first through fourth in junior or above debate competition at two tournaments.
  • Open division is open to all students regardless of years of experience or awards won in debate.
  • If a debate team is composed of partners of different experience levels, the team must enter the division of the more experienced partner.
  • We reserve the right to collapse a division of congressional debate, public forum, or LD if there are fewer than six schools entered or insufficient number of entries to run a successful division.
  • We will use MPJ in Open Lincoln Douglas Debate. Preferences will likely be released Thursday afternoon or evening.

Divisions for Individual Events: · Novice division is for beginners. These are students who have no more than twelve rounds of forensics experience in individual events or debate prior to the current school year regardless of class standing. · Open division is open to any high school student. Open division is defined as appropriate for those who have had six or more rounds of speaking experience prior to the current school year. Those not meeting the requirements of novice division must compete in open division. We reserve the right to collapse divisions if entries are below seven total slots.

  • Individual Events: Informative, Extemporaneous, Dramatic Interpretation, Duo Interpretation, Oratory, Impromptu, Humorous Interpretation, Programmed Oral Interpretation
  • Debate: Public Forum, Lincoln Douglas, and Congress


  • Individual events will be prematched, with drops processed as we receive them. Not reporting your drops is not the fault of the tournament directors.
  • Public Forum, and L-D Debate: Rounds I and II of all debates will be prematched; please report drops promptly. All subsequent debates will be matched “high-low” within brackets unless events are too small to power match in which case all six rounds will be random matches. We will use MPJ for open LD only.


  • Awards will be presented to the first-third place finishers in each individual event. In debate events, awards will be given to octo-finalists through first place. In congress top presiding officers and judge’s choice will receive awards in each chamber. Speaker awards will be offered to appropriate numbers in each division of each kind of debate.
  • The Charles T. Battin Award will be presented to the top open division all-around competitor in the tournament.
  • It is the responsibility of schools to be present at awards to pick up awards and certificates.
  • School sweepstakes awards will be presented to the top 3 squads based on the following formula:

L-D Debate PF Debate Congress IE

First Place 10 pts 10 pts 8 pts 5 pts

Second Place 8 pts 8 pts 6 pts 4 pts

Third/Quarters 6 pts 6 pts 4 pts 3 pts

Finalist/Octos 3 pts 3 pts 2 pts 2 pts

This is not an open tab room tournament.

Entry Fees

All fees will be handled at the fee collection times; you do NOT need to send your school fee in advance. Fees will be assessed as of 11:00 p.m. on Wednesday, January 4th. Drops after that time do not reduce fees as we hire judges and buy trophies based on your original entry numbers. Make checks payable to University of Puget Sound. Please email in drops and changes early; the fewer drops that are reported at registration, the more likely we are to start on time.

Purchase Orders: We ask that you avoid the use of purchase orders. If you select to use a purchase order then the director of your program is responsible for processing the necessary forms from registration with your schools accounting agents.

School/Squad fees: $70.00/school or squad

Lincoln Douglas $38.00/per debater

Public Forum $40.00/per team

Congress Slot $20.00/per contestant

Individual Events $11.00/per entry (not person)

Uncovered LD Debater $100.00/per debater

Uncovered Public Forum $100.00/per team

Uncovered Congress Slot $70.00/per student

Uncovered IE Slot $25.00/per slot

No Show Judges $200.00/per no show

Missed Ballot Fee $20.00/per missed ballot


Because forensics is an educational activity, we believe that a coach-judge who will provide competent critiques for competitors should accompany all entries. Members of the Puget Sound Forensics Team are not available for hire as they are needed to run the tournament. Students who have not graduated from high school may NOT judge regardless of division

  • Each LD, PF, or Congress Judge covers up to 3 entries.
  • Each IE Judge covers up to 6 entries
  • Judges cannot cover concurrent events: Public Forum, LD, and Congress.
  • Judging Penalties: Each no-sow judges not reported by 11:00 p.m. Thursday, January 5th will cost the school a $200.00 penalty and the appropriate fees for uncovered entries. Ballots assigned to judges from your school that are not picked up by ten minutes after a round is scheduled to begin will incur a $20 fee to cover a hired judge payment.

Tentative Tournament Schedule

January 6-7, 2023

IE Pattern: Expository, Extemporaneous, Dramatic Interpretation, Duo Interpretation, Oratory, Impromptu, Humorous Interpretation, Programmed Oral Interpretation

Tentative Schedule

Debate—LD, PF



Friday 1/6

Friday 1/6

Friday 1/6

8:00-10:00 am—Rd 1

12:00-2:00 pm—Rd 1

8:30-11:00 RD 1

10:00-12:00—Rd 2

4:00-6:00 pm—Rd 2

2:00-4:00 pm—Rd 3

6:00-8:00 pm—Rd 4

8:00-10:00 pm—Rd 3

5:30-8:00—Rd 2

Saturday 1/7

Saturday 1/7

Saturday 1/7

8:00-10:00 am—Rd 5

10:00-12:00 pm—Rd 6

12:00-2:00 pm--Finals

9:00-12:00 am—Congress

Individual Event and Debate Speaker (if possible) Awards 4:00 pm Saturday

Awards will only occur in the event the tournament is running on-time. Any delay and awards will be moved until after debate elims.

LD and PF Elims

Saturday 17

2:00-3:00 Elim 1

3:30-4:30 Elim 2

5:00-6:00 Elim 3

6:30-7:30 Elim 4

8:30 Elim 5 if needed

Tournament Speech Statement

This tournament affirms the importance of all tournament participants' cooperation in creating an educational and competitive environment that is fair, humane and responsible while, at the same time, encouraging debates that are devoted to full and robust argument about a diverse range of ideas. Specifically, this tournament affirms that:

  • Judges and students are encouraged to talk about the expectations that they have for creating a debate that focuses on ideas instead of personal attacks.
  • Debaters are encouraged to communicate with respect and to avoid the perception of attacking each other or the judge.
  • Judges are encouraged to communicate with respect and avoid the perception of attacking or devaluing students.
  • Debaters and judges are encouraged to reject discourse that devalues other members of our community based on their race, age, gender, gender orientation, class, sexual or religious orientation, or any reason that is not directly related to the arguments that they present.
  • Students and judges are encouraged to communicate with each other when they observe instances of verbally aggressive attacks rather than silently watching something occur to which they object.
  • Judges are encouraged to reward courteous and respectful behavior toward the judge and other competitors in awarding speaker points.

If serious and/or repeated demeaning speech materially or substantially disrupts the opportunity for debaters to compete fairly or the judge to evaluate fairly, judges are encouraged to dock speaker points.

Program Background

The University of Puget Sound has a long history of successful competition in collegiate debate. In addition to winning the national championships of the National Parliamentary Tournament of Excellence (NPTE) and the National Parliamentary Debate Association (NPDA), the University has consistently placed teams in the elimination rounds of the Cross-Examination Debate Association, NPTE, and NPDA as well as qualified teams to the National Debate Tournament (NDT). The Puget Sound program is currently transitioning to two forms of debate a new format being developed by Pacific Northwest Directors of Forensics. This new format has four major goals.

  • It seeks to immerse students in scholarly literature related to pressing social and political controversies.
  • It seeks to develop student skill in building, testing, and critiquing arguments synthesized from that literature and honing their ability to do so in front of a diversity of educated audiences.
  • Itseeks to develop skills related to critical and strategic thinking.
  • The format emphasizes the educational and social benefits of forensics through community-building.

Personally, I have served as Director of Forensics for 22 years as an active leader in regional, national, and international debate communities.I passionately believe in the transformational power of debate and seek to foster student learning through individual educational excellence while fostering a community of lifelong learners.

The Puget Sound Forensics program offers renewable scholarships and the University offers aggressive financial aid packages.

The University of Puget Sound offers unparalleled academic opportunities in a 97-acre residential campus of 2400 undergraduate students in the heart of Tacoma’s North End district.As Western Washington’s only national small independent college the University has been selected as one of 40 colleges that change lives. Additional information about the University of Puget Sound can be found athttps://www.pugetsound.edu.

I look forward to hearing more about your students and their future plans. If you or your students would like to talk more about Puget Sound and the Puget Sound Forensics program, please reach out to me atdbuescher@pugetsound.edu.