Finalist Interviews

Evan Engel (Harvard-Westlake EE), Champion

Question: What did you find the hardest case to answer at this tournament?
Evan Engel: I thought the hardest position to answer was definitely Greenhill’s Flip the Bird AC. It’s such a small aff and the cards are really good, even the best generics were an uphill battle.

Q: What do you think best prepared you for this tournament?
EE: I did a lot of background reading on the topic. I think a lot of judges will be more likely to give you the benefit of the doubt if you sound like you know what you’re talking about.

Q: How do you like this topic compared to others you’ve debated and why?
EE: I think the plurality of debaters hate Nov-Dec because they’re always legal topics, which means they normally pigeonhole people into either kritiks or philosophy positions because there is no larp ground. I personally didn’t mind this topic nearly as much as Jury Nullification or Right to be Forgotten, mostly because I think there is actually lit and contentious opinions about qualified immunity.

Q: Are there any positions/issues in debate that you’re passionate about that you’d like to speak about?
EE: I feel like it’s hard to answer this question without calling people out, but in the most general sense, can we abandon tricks debate? If you’re really into Kant, and you want to read a Kant aff, do your thing. But what is the value in building an aff around hoping the 1nc misses something and you get to scream “gotcha” at the top of the 1ar. No one learned anything, no one is better off because they had to answer the 3 hidden a prioris in your aff. I’m all for gamesmanship in debate, but why play a game in the first place if one of the players spends their whole turn trying to ruin it for the other?

Oliver Sussman (Cambridge Rindge and Latin OS), Finalist

Question: What did you find the hardest case to answer at this tournament?
Oliver Sussman: Lake Highland’s affs often have very unique frameworks; answering them requires a lot of quick thinking. This is especially true because they break new affs a lot! Specifically, I debated their democracy-to-come and inoperative community affs.

Q: What do you think best prepared you for this tournament?
OS: I think Bob and I came up with a bunch of pretty unique positions that others hadn’t developed—I especially like our drones advantage.

Q: How do you like this topic compared to others you’ve debated and why?
OS: I think this topic had pretty poor neg disad and philosophy ground. Ground-wise, I think I liked pretty much every other topic from the last two years more. However, it forced me to read up on really specific legal issues, to a greater degree than even other legal topics like jury nullification.

Q: Are there any positions/issues in debate that you’re passionate about that you’d like to speak about?
OS: I wish debaters engaged philosophical positions more instead of just reading generic kritiks and such to avoid framework debate. (Of course, nuanced kritiks that indict very specific aspects of philosophical affs are interesting.) I think people are often too quick to dismiss some framework arguments as “cheap shots” even when they are compelling issues that philosophers have debated for hundreds of years.

Main Tournament

Round 1

Pairings | Results

Round 2

Pairings | Results

Round 3

Pairings | Results

Round 4

Pairings | Results

Round 5

Pairings | Results

Round 6

Pairings | Results

Round 7

Pairings | Results

Bracket

Speaker Awards

  1. Sekou Cisse (Success Academy SC)
  2. TJ Foley (West Des Moines Valley TF)
  3. Shruthi Krishnan (Greenhill SK)
  4. Evan Engel (Harvard-Westlake EE)
  5. Raffi Piliero (Harrison RP)
  6. Connor Engel (Harvard-Westlake CE)
  7. Grant Brown (Millard North GB)
  8. Muhammad Khattak (Lake Highland Prep MK)
  9. Ariel Azbel (Lake Highland Prep AA)
  10. Gillian Zipursky (Scarsdale GZ)

Double-Octafinals

Peninsula IG walked over Peninsula JL (Bye)
Strake Jesuit JH def. West Des Moines Valley TF (Wu, Woodhouse, Grishaber)
Harvard-Westlake EE def. Westwood RM (Timmons, Stolte, Alderete)
Oakwood School – North Hollywood JW def. Harker EM (Torson, Taylor, Delateur)
Cambridge Rindge and Latin OS def. Harker SP (O’Krent, Legried, Hunt)
Success Academy SC def. Millburn CS (Sims, Gersh, Eckert)
Harrison RP def. Oakwood School – North Hollywood AW (Uppalapti, Kollar, Chapman)
Millard North GB def. Immaculate Heart DD (Stumbris, Moorhead, Castillo)
Lake Highland Prep MK def. American Heritage School – Plantation DM (Shapiro, Montecalvo, Kenny)
Lake Highland Prep AA def. West Des Moines Valley CT (Zhou, Yerneni, Laverty)
Dougherty Valley CS def. Strake Jesuit RC (Smith, Norman, Fahey)
Stuyvesant KF def. Kinkaid JY (Lonam, Evnen, Brennan)
Millard North PK def. Newark Science BA (Paramo, Merchant, Davis-Marks)
Cypress Woods LC def. Collegiate DM (Thompson, Pyda, Gravley)
Greenhill SK def. Phoenix Country Day PW (Hsun, Hertzig, Gandra)
Harvard-Westlake CE def. Scarsdale GZ (Rahman, Peiris, Burdt)

Octafinals

Lake Highland Prep MK walked over Lake Highland Prep AA (Bye)
Dougherty Valley CS def. Millard North GB (Zhou, Norman, Lonam)
Cypress Woods LC def. Oakwood School – North Hollywood JW (Taylor, Eckert, Castillo)
Stuyvesant KF def. Harrison RP (Taylor, Paramo, Evnen)
Harvard-Westlake EE def. Greenhill SK (Gandra, Alston, Alderete)
Harvard-Westlake CE def. Strake Jesuit JH (Yerneni, Gandra, Eckert)
Success Academy SC def. Millard North PK (Shatzkin, Hertzig, Davis-Marks)
Cambridge Rindge and Latin OS def. Peninsula IG (Pyda, Hunt, Castillo)

Quarterfinals

Harvard-Westlake EE def. Dougherty Valley CS (Lonam, Kenny, Eckert)
Stuyvesant KF def. Cypress Woods LC (Taylor, Overing, Castillo)
Harvard-Westlake CE def. Lake Highland Prep MK (Zhou, Sims, Burdt)
Cambridge Rindge and Latin OS def. Success Academy SC (Hunt, Hertzig, Alderete)

Semifinals

Harvard-Westlake EE def. Stuyvesant KF (Taylor, Sims, Eckert)
Cambridge Rindge and Latin OS def. Harvard-Westlake CE (Zhou, Torson, Lonam)

Finals

Harvard-Westlake EE def. Cambridge Rindge and Latin OS (Zhou, Taylor, Hertzig) on a 2-1.

Champion

Evan Engel (Harvard-Westlake EE)

Scouting Report

Bid Level: Octafinals
Entries (As of 11/17): 186
Last Year’s Finals: Greenhill BE def. Harrison SR (Fakorede, Pak, Taylor)

Debaters with Bids (As of 11/13):
American Heritage Plantation DM (2)
Apple Valley JB (1)
Cambridge Rindge and Latin OS (3)
Collegiate KY (2)
Collegiate DM (1)
Dougherty Valley CS (1)
Dulles AW (1)
Gilmour SW (1)
Greenhill SK (4)
Harker EM (2)
Harker SP (2)
Harrison RP (5)
Harvard-Westlake EE (3)
Harvard-Westlake CE (2)
Harvard-Westlake JN (1)
Harvard-Westlake SP (1)
Immaculate Heart DD (1)
Lake Highland Prep AA (4)
Lake Highland Prep MK (2)
Lexington NB (1)
Lexington RW (1)
Millard North GB (2)
Millard North PK (1)
Newark Science BA (2)
Oakwood JW (3)
Peninsula JL (5)
Peninsula IG (2)
Phoenix Country Day PW (2)
Scarsdale GZ (2)
Strake Jesuit CP RC (3)
Strake Jesuit CP MC (1)
Success Academy SC (3)
Kinkaid JY (1)
Woodlands College Park JZ (1)
West Des Moines Valley TG (3)
West Des Moines Valley CT (2)
West Des Moines Valley EM (2)
West Des Moines Valley TF (2)
West Ranch JW (3)
Westwood RM (1)
Westwood RS (1)
Winston Churchill BW (1)

 

Shailja Somani