14 members of the CA Speech and Debate team traveled to the Legislative Building in downtown Raleigh on Saturday February 25th to compete in Tarheel East District Congress tournament which determines who will represent eastern North Carolina at the NSDA National Tournament to be held in Birmingham Alabama in June. CA had an outstanding showing qualifying two legislative debaters to nationals for the third straight year as Jack Stafford qualified for Nationals for the third time after being named runner up in the Senate, and RJ Jain qualified in the House after being named the champion in House 1. In addition three other Cary Academy students were the first alternate to Nationals after placing second in their house chambers. Dylan Lamphier, Cade Spector, and Georgia Dietz were the runners up in House 1, House 2, and House 3 respectively. Other students placing were Suki Bristol who was third in House 1, Ben Lipson who was third in House 3, and Grace Wissink who was fourth in House 2. On the basis of these placements CA was named the sweepstakes champion of the District Congress. This was CA's third straight District Congress sweepstakes. CA has now qualified to compete in the National Student Congress for six consecutive years.
Twenty members of the Cary Academy speech and debate team traveled to Charlotte over the weekend of February 25th to compete in the first ever Steven Davis Invitational hosted by Ardrey Kell High School. The team of Isaac Fan and Kevin Chen reached the final round of Junior Varsity Public Forum Debate placing second out of a field of of 32 teams. Isaac and Kevin were undefeated in prelims finishing as the top seed, and Isaac was also the top speaker in the division. In Junior Varsity Lincoln Douglas Debate Will Aarons reached the semifinals after going undefeated in prelims. There were several CA entries who had 3-1 records but failed to place on speaker points as well including Alex Knott and Riya Thomas, as well as Tori Borlase and Matthew Schaeffer in Varsity Public Forum, Oonagh Stevans and Chelsea Fang in Varsity Lincoln Douglas, and Cate Pitterle and Ethan Ng in JV LD.
Five members of the Congressional Debate squad traveled to Cambridge Massachusetts over President's Day weekend to compete in the 43rd annual Harvard Invitational. They competed against 450 other competitors in the Harvard National Congress and after 3 preliminary sessions 3 of the 5 CA competitors advanced to the quarterfinals. Jack Stafford was second in both his prelim chamber and quarterfinal chamber to advance to the semifinals placing him in the top 48 of the 450 competitors. Ben Lipson also advanced to the semifinals after placing 5th in both his prelim and quarters chambers. RJ Jain advanced to quarterfinals before being eliminated after placing 5th in his prelim chamber. Lexi Kleine just missed out an advancing after placing 6th in her prelim chamber.
30 novice members of the CA Speech and Debate team traveled to Fayetteville on Saturday February 11th to compete in the second annual DSDL Novice Championships hosted by Cumberland International Early College on the campus of Reid Ross Classical High School. The team enjoyed a great deal of success placing second in overall sweepstakes and bringing home championships in two different events. Becca Segal was named the champion of Extemporaneous Speaking after receiving straight ones in the final round, and Will Aarons and Jessica Zhong combined to close out Lincoln Douglas Debate and were named co-champions. Other students contributing to the team's overall performance were Luke Johnson and James Taylor who reached the semifinals of Public Forum Debate; as well as Margalit Mermelstein who was second in Poetry and fourth in Prose, Jessica Judge who was fourth in Poetry and sixth in Prose, and Liz Uys who was third in Poetry.
12 members of the Cary Academy Speech & Debate team traveled to the suburbs of Philadelphia to compete in the Falcon Invitational hosted by Pennsbury High School. The team had an extremely successful weekend with several students advancing to the elimination rounds in their respective events. Georgia Dietz and Aleksia Kleine both reached the finals of Student Congress. In the speech events Elizabeth Maydew was 3rd in Impromptu and and a semifinalist in Extemp and Oratory. Viraj Garg was 3rd in Informative Speaking and a semifinalist in Impromptu. Eesha Sachdeva was 6th in Oratory, and Grace Seidel reached the semifinals of Prose and Lily Levin reached the semifinals of Poetry.
The Dogwood Speech and Debate League's regular season came to an end on Saturday February 4th as the sixth and final Dogwood Tournament was hosted by Gray's Creek High School. CA had an fantastic day repeating as winners of the Carole Hamilton School of Excellence Award given to the school who accumulates the most points throughout the league season, winning individual points race championships in three events, placing second in overall sweepstakes, and qualifying 25 students to compete in the NCFL Grand Nationals tournament in Louisville Kentucky in May. The individual points race champions were as follows:
Jack Stafford-1st, Student Congress Chamber B
Cate Pitterle- 1st, Novice Lincoln Douglas Debate
Sullivan Morgus- 1st, Varsity Lincoln Douglas Debate
Grace Jin- 2nd, Varsity Lincoln Douglas Debate
Evan Ehrhardt- 2nd, Program of Oral Interpretation
Evan Ehrhardt- 3rd, Original Oratory
Ben Lipson-3rd Place, Student Congress Chamber A
Becca Segal- 3rd, Declamation
Diviya Vijayakumar- 3rd, Extemporaneous Speaking
Jonathan Segal-4th, Extemporaneous Speaking
Emily Keady- 4th, Declamation
Olivia Halferty & Milen Patel-4th Place, Varsity Public Forum Debate
Cameron Hasund- 5th, Declamation
Davis Braswell- 5th, Extemporaneous Speaking
In addition to these students who were recognized Dr. Alexandra Sencer was inducted into the Dogwood Speech and Debate League Hall of Fame.
The Cary Academy Speech and Debate team is responsible for the content of this blog.