Congratulations to the Harrison High School Debate team who captured both the Varsity and JV Championships at the 44th University of Pennsylvania tournament (a.k.a. the Liberty Bell Classic) this year. This was the first time in team history that two Harrison debaters have closed out the varsity division of a bid tournament; additionally, the team claimed the JV championship, and was one ballot away from a close-out in that division.
This is also the second consecutive year that Harrison has won both Lincoln-Douglas divisions of Penn, bringing the team's tournament win count to 13 and Tournament of Champions bid count to 11 so far this season.
In varsity, senior Eli Lapkin and junior Ethan Voskoff were co-champions. This was Eli’s first tournament win of the season and he earned his 4th TOC bid in the process. Ethan was the tournament's 4th place speaker and earned his first TOC bid of the season.
Sophomore Sonali Nicola cleared to elimination rounds where she reached partial doubles (the top 23) and was eliminated on a close 2-1 decision. This is Sonali's second time clearing at a bid tournament. Rounding out the varsity division were sophomores Rebecca Anderson, Molly Ryan, and Giovanni Cutri, all of whom had solid 3-3 records in a competitive field. Rebecca was also 9th speaker in the varsity division.
In JV, freshman Luka Safar was the tournament champion, clearing to elimination rounds as the 2nd seed and 2nd speaker! This is Luka's second tournament win this season. Freshman Ali Ahmad reached semifinals, where he was eliminated on a close 2-1 decision. He placed 4th overall, and was top speaker in JV.
Freshman Gabe Voskoff reached quarterfinals, where he was coached over by Luka based on seeding, placing 7th overall. Freshman Mai Blaustein reached octofinals, where she was eliminated on a close 2-1 decision; she placed 11th overall, and was 6th speaker in JV.