Tonganoxie High debate team heading to four meets this weekend

Squad had representation at five tournaments Nov. 21

December 4, 2015

The THS debate squad maximized its travel opportunities this just before Thanksgiving by competing at five area events Nov. 21.

Sophomores Gage Smith and Jacob Derzinski earned a sixth seed in elims with their 4-1 preliminary record in competition at Topeka High. They dropped to Blue Valley in the quarterfinals and finished fourth. Others debating at Topeka were seniors Spencer Finkbiner, Emma DeMaranville and Hunter York; juniors Michael Mast, Scott Kirk and Austin Ballard.

At St. Thomas Aquinas the squad had two teams earn 4-1 records. Junior Bailey Jackson debated with sophomore Alan Hinds while sophomores Ethan Sandburg and Sierra Staatz compiled impressive prelim records. Unfortunately, seeding left both teams out of elims. Sandburg and Staatz finished ninth and Jackson and Hinds 13th. Others competing at STA were juniors Matthew McClellan and Dylan Tavis; and sophomores Sammy Sigourney and Philip Rutherford.

At Bishop Miege the THS squad placed third in team sweepstakes with a 13-7 cumulative record. Freshmen Sofia Romero and Julianna Ballard compiled a 4-1 record and placed fifth. Others competing were freshmen Emmett Keene, Harrison York, Aaron Grant, Chris Botkin, Miriah Vestal and Coby Claypool.

At Basehor, THS was represented by senior Jacob Tollefson, sophomores Simon Commerford, Bowan Jones, Allison Williams and Grayson Gilbert and freshmen Xander Stowe and Madisen Lansing and Alex Tucker.

At Ottawa, THS debaters included junior Nathan Bothwell and freshmen Blake Phillips, Garrett Eason and Jacob Wolf.

After the Thanksgiving break, THS will be on the road this Saturday to Lawrence High, Lawrence Free State, Rock Creek and Topeka Hayden.

Tonganoxie then will host a tournament Dec. 12. Any community members interested in judging at the THS Invitational can contact Steve Harrell at the high school, 913-416-1460.

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