Debaters start season with a series of wins and bids to TOC

Ethan Lachman and Celine Park

With seven bids, the debate team solidified its spot as the top team in the country thus far.

The team started the month off at the Loyola Invitational for Lincoln Douglas Debate on Sept. 7-9, in which Alexandra Mork ’20 got her first bid to the Tournament of Champions. Debaters Andrew Gong ’21 and Chronicle Opinion Editor Vishan Chaudhary ’19 advanced to elimination rounds, while Matthew Paul ’21, Spencer Paul ’19, Will Berlin ’19 and Chronicle Assistant Features Editor Spencer Klink ’20 placed in the top 32 debaters. Jaya Nayar ’20 placed in the top 16 and Mork placed in the top four. Additionally, Chaudhary won first speaker, Nayar second speaker and Spencer Paul fifth speaker.

The next week, 117 students participated at the Greenhill Memorial Classic Tournament from Sept. 13-17. Spencer Paul won the tournament, and placed as the fifteenth best speaker. Nayar, Chronicle Assistant Opinion Editor Jessa Glassman ’20 and Samantha Mcloughlin ’21 placed in the top 16. Glassman placed third and Mcloughlin 11th in speaker points. Chaudhary placed top four in the point system and won second speaker. Ari Davidson ’19 placed top eight, winning sixth place in speaker. Mork completed her qualifications for the Tournament of Champions, which takes place in April, and placed within the top 32 speakers in points. Will Berlin went 4-2 in preliminary rounds and Spencer Klink went 3-3 in preliminary rounds, and unfortunately, none of them advanced to the next round.

“It was really great [winning the tournament] because I had worked really hard to do well at that tournament since it was the first big one of the season,” Spencer Paul said. “And for all of the hard work to pay off and finally win a tournament was a really great feeling.”

Eighty five students entered the Jack Howe Memorial Tournament at Cal State Long Beach. Matthew Paul ’21won the tournament and received his first bid to the Tournament of Champions. Davidson and Nayar won the policy awards and received their bids to the Tournament of Champions for policy debate, a feat that has not occurred in over 25 years. Landon Poon ’20, Nathan Russell ’21 and Andrew Gong ’21 proceeded to the double octofinals. Glassman, who also placed as the second speaker, and Chronicle Assistant A&E Editor Joanna Im ’20 proceeded to the octofinals.

The debate team’s next tournament is The Presentation Voices Invitational in San Jose from Oct. 5-7.