Published on March 10, 2016 by Sean Flynt  

The Samford University junior varsity debate team of Carly Davis of Windermere, Florida, and Wesley Staples of Killen, Alabama, finished fifth at the National Speech and Debate Association’s JV/Novice Nationals held at West Virginia University March 5–7.

The team had a winning preliminary record, defeating teams from Rutgers University, West Virginia University, Liberty University and the University of Central Florida before defeating Liberty in the round of sixteen. They were finally defeated in the quarterfinals on a close decision against the University of Michigan. 

Davis was named eleventh speaker in the nation at the tournament, adding to her recent recognition as the regional Novice Debater of the Year.

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.