Debate Team Soars at National Level

The varsity debate team demonstrated why it is considered one of the best teams in the nation with tremendous performances at the John Edie Holiday Debate Tournament (Minnesota) and the Southern Bell Forum Debate Tournament (Tennessee) over winter break. The team also won the Lexington Massachusetts Winter Invitational debate tournament over Martin Luther King, Jr. weekend.

The Lexington Massachusetts Winter Invitational was the second major "Tournament of Champion" sanctioned event that a McDonogh team has won.The field consisted of over 80 teams from over 10 different states, totaling more than 150 students in competition. The team of Sahil S. '15 and Nishad N. '17 finished the preliminaries with a 4-2 record and entered the elimination rounds as the tournaments 16th seed with Sahil named as the 15th speaker overall.They ended up defeating Peninsular High School from California on a 2-1 decision to win the tournament. The team of Harini R. '15 and Ryan J. '17 finished in the top 16 of the tournament.

In Minnesota, not only did all of McDonogh’s pairings qualify for the elimination rounds (a first in team history), but the team of Ryan E. '15 and Alyssa R. '15 came in first place, defeating one of the top teams in the country. Ryan and Alyssa also received another qualifying bid to the Tournament of Champions (TOC) at the University of Kentucky in April, and Alyssa received 11th speaker overall out of more than 300 debaters at the tournament. Additionally, Ryan J. '17, Harini R. '15, Nishad N. '17, and Sahil S. '15 were all one win away from one out of two qualifying bids to the TOC.

During the Southern Bell Forum Debate Tournament, considered one of the most prestigious regular season tournaments of the year with only the top teams in the nation receiving invitations, Alyssa and Ryan received their fifth qualifying bid to the TOC. The pair finished in the Octofinals, losing to Pace Academy (Georgia), who went on to win the tournament. Their 5-1 preliminary record placed them in the top ten seeds going into the elimination rounds. Out of a field of over 100 of the best high school debaters in the country, Ryan was named the 25th speaker overall and Alyssa was named the sixth speaker.


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8600 McDonogh Road | Owings Mills | Maryland | 21117