JHS & SHS debaters represent Ateneo, PH and win 98 medals in Vietnam

July 15, 2017
By: 
Joel Falgui

The Ateneo de Manila Junior High School (AJHS) Debaters brought honor and glory to both the Ateneo and the Philippines when they won a total of 98 medals at the Global Rounds of the World Scholar’s Cup (WSC) 2017 held last June 25 to July 1 in the Vietnamese National Convention Center in Hanoi, Vietnam. The AJHS Debaters did very well with 6 teams qualifying outright for the Tournament of Champions to be held in Yale University later this November.

 
A total of 98 medals (66 silver and 32 gold) were awarded to our AJHS Debaters contingent composed of 16 Grades 8-10 students from the Junior High School and seven Grade 11 students from Senior High School who were former AJHS Debaters. What is especially remarkable about the performance is that about 4,000 participants and over a thousand teams were competing. In addition to participating in all the World Scholars Cup academic events of Scholar's Challenge (a written exam on all subject areas of Science, Literature, History, Social Studies, Arts and Music, and a Special Area - Modern Mythologies), Scholar's Bowl (a quiz bee on all 6 subjects), On the spot Collaborative essay Writing, and 3 rounds of Team Debates, there were also team building events like the Scholars' Scavenge, social events like the Scholar's Ball, and cultural exchange activities like the Cultural Fair which gave the JHS students many chances to interact with students, coaches, and teachers from Australia to Zimbabwe over the weeklong academic contest. 

(L-R) Matthew Garcia, AC Saulong, Rap Del Valle, Xavi Tuazon, Michael Ocampo, Christian Tiamzon (back), Josh Caluya, Anton Abiera, Andrei Gelbolingo, David Bejarin, and Simon Angoluan
 
Aside from the competitions, other highlights included traveling around the area and seeing the sites in Hanoi as well as paying a courtesy call to the Philippine Embassy in Hanoi after being invited along with some other Philippine teams by the Ambassador to Vietnam, H.E. Ambassador Noel Servigon.

All students participating in WSC are called “scholars” and are categorized into the Junior (below 15 years old) and Senior (15 years old and above) divisions. Since some AJHS teams’ compositions included students who were 15 or older, these teams were entered in the Senior division. As such, some of the younger AJHS Debaters had the additional challenge of facing students much older than them. Nevertheless, the AJHS Debaters excelled and still brought honor to both the Ateneo and the Philippines on an international stage.
 
While there were many excellent performances against top international competition, some of the highlights were:
 
*Simon Angoluan of JHS P10-ZUR brought home 9 medals including 8 silvers and 1 gold for being the top scholar of the AJHS Juniors DivisionSimon Angoluan
 
*Luis Amatong of JHS L10–GER brought home 6 gold medals and was the top scholar of the AJHS Seniors Division. Luis was also ranked 119th out of 500 Champion Scholars and was ranked 37th and 39th in Challenge History and Challenge Literature, Seniors Division
                                             
*Shawn Tongson of  JHS L10-GER brought home 8 medals, including 5 golds, and was ranked 68th and 78th in Challenge Literature and Challenge Science, Seniors Division, among his other awards
Shawn Tongson
 
*Julian Bumagat of JHS M10–MAN was the only Atenean to be awarded a Da Vinci Scholars medal and was ranked 15th among the Da Vinci Scholars who scored in the upper 30% of all 6 Challenge Subject Areas, Seniors Division

Julian Bumagat
 
*Paco Blanco of SHS ABM 11-Borgia was the highest ranked Atenean at 41st in Collaborative Writing, Seniors Division
 
*Raphael Estacio of SHS GA 11-Goupil was the highest ranked Atenean at 40th in Challenge History, Seniors Division
 
*The Juniors Division team of Rap Del Valle (JHS P9-SOU), Michael Ocampo (JHS P9-SPI), and AC Saulong (JHS P9-SIT) brought back 15 medals, including 10 golds, and finished 84th out of the top 300 (Scholar’s Bowl), 37th out of the top 300 (Team Debate), and 90th overall in the Juniors Division 

(L-R) Rap Del Valle, Michael Ocampo, and AC Saulong
 
*The Juniors Division team of David Bejarin (L8–COT), Xavi Tuazon (C8–ARN), and Christian Tiamzon (C8–ARW ) finished 125th out of the top 300 teams for the Juniors Division Scholar’s Bowl

(L-R) Christian Tiamzon, Xavi Tuazon, and David Bejarin
 
*The Juniors Division team of Josh Caluya (M9–LMN), Andrei Gelbolingo (L10-GLB), and Simon Angoluan finished 167 out of the top 300 teams for the Juniors Division Collaborative Writing

From left: Simon Angoluan, Andrei Gelbolingo, and Josh Caluya
 
*The Seniors Division team of Gareth de Leon (C9-BNO), Shawn Tongson, and Yuan Ordenes (HUMSS 11-Hurtado) brought back 17 medals, including 9 golds, and finished as the 114th out of the top 250 in Scholar’s Bowl, the 96th out of the 250 Top Debate Teams, and the 108th overall in the Champion Team Countdown
 
*The Seniors Division team of Paco Blanco, Matthew Mercado (ABM 11-Bellarmine), and Carlos Pastoral (GA 11-Garnet) brought back 20 medals, including 6 golds, and finished as the 99th out of the top 250 Champion Writing Teams and was the 198th overall in the Champion Team Countdown
 
*The Seniors Division team of Raphael Estacio, Riane Oquiza (HUMSS 11-Mayer), & Javy Pineda (GA 11-Garnet ) brought back 17 medals (including 6 golds) and finished as the 59th out of the 250 Top Debate Teams, and the 149th overall in the Champion Team Countdown
 
*Rap Del Valle (278 th), Michael Ocampo (270 th), and Simon Angoluan (156th) were named to the list of the top 350 Champion Scholars of the Juniors Division out of almost a thousand participants
 
*Andrei Gelbolingo (485th), Michael Ocampo (339th), Matthew Garcia (P9-SPI, 336th), AC Saulong (300th), Simon Angoluan (289th), Xavi Tuazon (C8-ARN, 215th), and Rap Del Valle (30th out of 500!) were named among the 500 Champion Debaters of the Juniors Division

*Yuan Ordenes (391st), Shawn Tongson (263rd), Paco Blanco (253rd), Matthew Mercado (243rd), Riane Oquiza (190th), and Luis Amatong (119th) were named to the list of the top 500 Champion Scholars of the Seniors Division out of almost a thousand participants
 
*Raphael Estacio (502nd), Javy Pineda (435th), Yuan Ordenes (372nd), Luis Amatong (252nd), Shawn Tongson (248th), Matthew Mercado (152nd), and Riane Oquiza (70th) were named among the 600 Champion Debaters of the Seniors Division
 
The culmination of all the hard work and preparation was the announcement that a total of six teams had excelled in the Global Round and were now qualified to compete in the Tournament of Champions to be held in Yale University from November 9-14, 2017.
 
The students were accompanied during the trip by AJHS faculty member Ms. Mary Jill Janine S. de la Paz of the English Subject Area and by the parents: Mrs. de Leon, Mrs. Ocampo, Mrs. Del Valle, Mrs. Bejarin, Mrs. Tongson, Mrs. Caluya, Ms. Ordenes Cascolan, Atty. Abiera, Mr. Saulong, Mr. Garcia, Mr. and Mrs. Pastoral, and Mr. & Mrs. Mercado. In addition, Ms. de la Paz and parent Attorney Arthur Abiera served as adjudicators for the debates of both the Junior and Senior divisions.
 
The moderator of the AJHS Debaters is Mr. Joel Falgui and the students prepared for this competition with training from Mr. Falgui, AJHS Debaters coach Mr. Tres Yap, and AJHS Debaters alumni including Matti Tan, David Africa, and Matthew Mercado.
 
The AJHS Debaters wish to extend their thanks and gratitude to the ASHS and AJHS school administrators, Mrs. Arespacochaga, Mrs. Concepcion, Mr. Capinding, and Mr. Miranda, and most especially to Dr. Carmela C. Oracion, for the schools’ unwavering support in the teams’ many endeavors.
 
Thanks are also extended to Cebu Pacific Air which helped with the flights to and from Vietnam and to the Grade 8 Parents Council SY 16-17 of the AJHS Parents Union for School and Home (PUSH) which helped sponsor the AJHS Debaters.

What follows is a listing of the awards won by the AJHS Debaters. The numbers that follow the award are the ranking of the individual or the team.

Individual Awards—Ateneo Junior High School Students
Anton Abiera (L8–DEC)
          •        Top Debate Teams - 218 (Silver)
 
Luis Amatong (L10–GER)                       
·         Champion Scholars 119 out of 500 (Gold)
·         Debate Champions 252 (Gold)
·         Writing Champions 110 (Gold)
·         Challenge History 37 (Gold)
·         Challenge Literature 39 (Gold)
·         School Top Scholar (Seniors Division) - Gold
 
Simon Angoluan (P10–ZUR)
          •        Top Debate Teams - 216 (Silver)
          •        Top Writing Teams - 167 (Silver)
          •        Debate Champions - 219 (Silver)
          •        Writing Champions - 477 (Silver)
          •        Challenge - History - Silver
          •        Challenge - Science - Silver
          •        Challenge - Special Area - Silver
          •        School Top Scholar - Gold
          •        Champion Scholar's - 156 (Silver)
 
David Bejarin (L8–COT)
          •        Scholar's Bowl - 125 (Silver)
          •        Top Debate Teams - 220 (Silver)
          •        Champion Team Countdown - 192 out of top 200 teams (Silver)
 
Julian Bumagat (M10–MAN)          
          •        Da Vinci Scholars 15 (Gold)
 
Josh Caluya (M9–LMN)
          •        Top Debate Teams - 216 (Silver)
          •        Top Writing Teams - 167 (Silver)
 
Gareth De Leon (C9 – BNO)
·         Scholar’s Bowl 114 (Gold)
·         Top Debate Teams 96 out of 250 (Gold)
·         Champion Team Countdown 108 out of top 200 teams (Silver)
 
Rap Del Valle (P9–SOU)
          •        Scholar's Bowl - 84 (Gold)
          •        Top Debate Teams - 37 (Gold)
          •        Champion Team Countdown - 90 out of top 200 teams (Gold)
          •        Debate Champions - 30 (Gold)
          •        Champion Scholar - 278 (Silver)
 
Matthew Garcia (P9–SPI)
          •        Top Debate Teams - 218 (Silver)
          •        Debate Champions - 336 (Silver)
 
Andrei Gelbolingo (L10 –GLB)
          •        Top Debate Teams - 216 (Silver)
          •        Top Writing Teams - 167 (Silver)
          •        Scholar’s Challenge - Literature - (Silver)
          •        Debate Champions - 485 (Silver)
 
Michael Ocampo (P9–SPI)
          •        Scholar's Bowl - 84 (Gold)
          •        Top Debate Teams - 37 (Gold)
          •        Champion Team Countdown - 90 out of top 200 teams (Gold)
          •        Debate Champions - 339 (Silver)
          •        Writing Champions - 277 (Silver)
          •        Champion Scholar - 270 (Silver)

Michael Ocampo was selected as Philippine contingent flag bearer
 
AC Saulong (P9–SIT)
          •        Scholar's Bowl - 84 (Gold)
          •        Top Debate Teams - 37 (Gold)
          •        Champion Team Countdown - 90 out of top 200 teams (Gold)
          •        Debate Champions - 300 (Silver)
 
Christian Tiamzon (C8–ARW)
          •        Scholar's Bowl - 125 (Silver)
          •        Top Debate Teams - 220 (Silver)
          •        Champion Team Countdown - 192 out of top 200 teams (Silver)
 
Shawn Tongson (L10–GER)
·                Scholar’s Bowl 114 (Gold)
·                Debate Champions 248 (Gold)
·                Challenge Literature 68 (Gold)
·                Challenge Science 78 (Gold)
·                Challenge Special Area (Silver)
·                Top Debate Teams 96 (Gold)
·                Champion Scholar 263 (Silver)
·                Champion Team Countdown 108 out of top 200 teams (Silver)
 
Xavi Tuazon (C8–ARN)
          •        Scholar's Bowl - 125 (Silver)
          •        Top Debate Teams - 220 (Silver)
          •        Champion Team Countdown - 192 out of top 200 teams (Silver)
          •        Debate Champions - 215 (Silver)
          •        Writing Champions - 402 (Silver)
 
Aaron Viloria (P10–WHI)
·         Challenge History (Silver)
 
Individual Awards—Ateneo Senior High School Students
Paco Blanco (ABM 11-Borgia)
·         Scholar’s Bowl 217 (Silver)
·         Top Debate Teams 212 (Silver)
·         Top Writing Teams 99 (Gold)
·         Champion Team Countdown 198 out of top 200 teams (Silver)
·         Writing Champion 41 (Gold)
·         Challenge Arts (Silver)
·         Challenge History (Silver)
·         Challenge Literature (Silver)
·         Champion Scholars 253 (Silver)
 
Raphael Estacio (GA 11-Goupil)             
·         Scholar’s Bowl 168 out of 250 (Silver)
·         Top Debate Teams 59 out of 250 (Gold)
·         Champion Team Countdown 149 out of top 200 teams (Silver)
·         Debate Champions 502 out of 600 (Silver)
·         Challenge History 40 of top 100 (Gold)
·         Challenge Literature (Silver)
 
Matthew Mercado (ABM 11-Bellarmine)
·         Scholar’s Bowl 217 (Silver)
·         Debate Champion 152 (Gold)
·         Writing Champion 490 (Silver)
·         Top Debate Teams 212 (Silver)
·         Top Writing Teams 99 (Gold)
·         Champion Scholars 243 (Gold)
·         Champion Team Countdown 198 out of top 200 teams (Silver)
 
Riane Oquiza (HUMSS 11-Mayer)
·         Scholar’s Bowl 168 out of 250 (Silver)
·         Top Debate Teams 59 out of 250 (Gold)
·         Champion Team Countdown 149 out of top 200 teams (Silver)
·         Debate Champions 70 (Gold)
·         Writing Champion 452 (Silver)
·         Challenge Social Studies (Silver)
·         Champion Scholars 190 (Gold)
 
Yuan Ordenes (HUMSS 11-Hurtado)
·         Scholar’s Bowl 114 (Gold)
·         Top Debate Teams 96 (Gold)
·         Champion Team Countdown 108 out of top 200 teams (Silver)
·         Debate Champion 372 (Silver)
·         Writing Champion 523 (Silver)
·         Champion Scholars 391 (Silver)
 
Carlos Pastoral (GA 11-Garnet)
·         Scholar’s Bowl 217 (Silver)
·         Top Debate Teams 212 (Silver)
·         Top Writing Teams 99 (Gold)
·         Champion Team Countdown 198 out of top 200 teams (Silver)
 
Javy Pineda (GA 11-Garnet)
·         Scholar’s Bowl 168 out of 250 (Silver)
·         Debate Champions 435 (Silver)
·         Top Debate Teams 59 out of 250 (Gold)
·         Champion Team Countdown 149 out of top 200 teams (Silver)
 
Ateneo Junior High School Students arranged by cluster:
Pamplona
Rap Del Valle (P9-SOU)
Matthew Garcia (P9-SPI)
Michael Ocampo (P9-SPI)
AC Saulong (P9-SIT)
Aaron Viloria (P10-WHI)
Simon Angoluan (P10-ZUR)
 
Cardoner
Xavi Tuazon (C8-ARN)
Christian Tiamzon (C8-ARW)
Gareth De Leon (C9-BNO)
 
La Storta
Anton Abiera (L8-DEC)
David Bejarin (L8-COT)
Luis Amatong (L10-GER)
Andrei Gelbolingo (L10-GLB)
Shawn Tongson (L10 GER)
 
Montserrat
Josh Caluya (M9-LMN)
Julian Bumagat (M10-MAN)

The AJHS boys
 
Ateneo Senior High School Students arranged by strand:

ABM
Matthew Mercado – ABM 11-Bellarmine
Paco Blanco – ABM 11-Borgia
 
GA
Raphael Estacio – GA 11-Goupil
Carlos Pastoral – GA 11-Garnet
Javy Pineda – GA 11-Garnet
 
HUMSS
Riane Oquiza – HUMSS 11-Mayer
Yuan Ordenes – HUMSS 11-Hurtado