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University of Richmond policy debaters recently won a 28-team novice tournament hosted by Appalachian State University in Winston-Salem, N.C.

The Richmond team of sophomores Catherine Kent of Granville, Ohio, and Danielle Taylor of Basking Ridge, N.J., went 4-2 in preliminary rounds, before sweeping through the elimination and final rounds to capture the championship. Kent and Taylor were competing in only their second tournament.

In each round of collegiate policy debate — also known as cross-examination debate — two-person teams argue either the affirmative or negative side of a topic that is established for the year. In preliminary rounds, a team must argue affirmative and negative an equal number of times. In elimination rounds, a coin flip determines who argues which side.

Kent and Taylor defeated Louisville, Miami (Fla.) and Liberty in preliminaries, then eliminated George Mason, John Carroll and Liberty enroute to the finals. They defeated Vanderbilt in a final round split decision.

This year’s topic is “Resolved: the United States Federal Government should substantially increase the number of and/or substantially expand beneficiary eligibility for its visas for one or more of the following: employment-based immigrant visas, nonimmigrant temporary worker visas, family-based visas, human trafficking-based visas.”