Debate concludes season, places 10th at State


Anna Evilsizor

WORKING IT OUT Discussing a piece, Daniel Eriks, junior, examines feedback with Ayush Arora, junior, on a speech for a past competition.

After weeks of preparation, Debate placed 10th overall at State Jan. 28-29. Several students advanced, including Keira Hawk, senior, and juniors Ayush Arora, Reena Alsakaji, Hiba Fatima and Anagha Kodukula. For Keira, who semi-finaled in Congressional Debate, the self doubt that comes with competing proved to be a tough obstacle.

“A lot of the times you get in your own head and think, ‘What if I didn’t break?’ Reassuring yourself and remaining calm is pretty hard,” Keira said. “So I was very satisfied and happy that I was able to accomplish a part of my goal.”

With all the adjustments this season, the team’s hard work will pay off at Nationals. Keira, Ayush and Suvali Giridaran, freshman, qualified at Districts Feb. 12 to compete at Nationals June 13-17 in Louisville, Kentucky. 

“I had been (adapting to the in-person environment) throughout the season, but in the final round at State, we debated in a sizeable lecture hall,” Ayush said. “Knowing that this was the final round, in addition to being in the large hall, made it harder to focus and really got my nerves up. My performance helped me recover my confidence.”