AHS Debaters Are Rotary Nat’l Debate Champs for the 2nd time in 3 Years
For the third time within seven days, the Ateneo de Manila High School Debaters have won a championship. Team AHS A, comprised of Renz Reyes (11-A), Luigi Alcañeses (11-A), and Hans Gonzalez (10-M) were undefeated as they swept the Rotary National Debate Championship (RNDC) on January 31, 2016. After breaking into the elimination rounds as the top seed, they battled their way to the grand finals against PAREF Southridge A. AHS A won every preliminary and elimination round unanimously, a rare feat known as a tournament sweep. Team AHS A likewise won individual speaker awards. Reyes was awarded as the 3rd Best Speaker of the tournament, while Gonzalez and Alcañeses tied as the 7th Best Speakers.
This marks the second time in RNDC’s three-year history that Ateneo High School has won the prestigious competition. Alcañeses and Reyes were in the Grand Final of the inaugural RNDC in 2014, but lost to then Team AHS A, comprised of Miguel Ventura (A 2014), Isaac Lee (D 2014), and Jim Bulan (N 2014). Now in their third or second year of high school, Reyes, Alcañeses, and Gonzalez savor the victory.
In the finals, AHS A successfully supported the motion, “This house believes that the Philippines should abandon the arbitration case against China and pursue cooperation in the West Philippine Sea with them instead.” They won unanimously before a panel of five judges, and Renz Reyes was awarded as the Best Speaker of the Finals.
Team AHS B, comprised of Red Nadela (11-A), JC Cruz (11-L), and Matti Tan (9-A) reached the quarterfinals of the tournament before being eliminated by AHS A. AHS C, comprised of Miguel Carnecer (11-C), David Africa (9-A), and Matthew Mercado (9-H), reached the Octofinals. Finally, all-freshman team AHS D, consisting of Gabe Apostol (9-A), Ryan Oquiza (9-D), and Javy Pineda (9-D) also broke into the Octofinals of the tournament. The four teams of AHS achieved a full contingent break.
The Rotary National Debate Championship (RNDC) is a national debate tournament hosted by the Rotary Club of San Francisco Del Monte. This year’s tournament, hosted in the Asians Parliamentary Format, was competed in by 102 debaters, and several other adjudicators and observers. It was hosted in Quezon City Science High School from January 30-31, 2016.
The AHS Debaters are coached by Miguel Ventura, Isaac Lee, Henry Fernando, and Rafa Lapira. The moderator of the team is Mrs. Fe U. De Jesus of the English Department. The team extends its heartfelt gratitude to the OSA, under the leadership of Ms. Kristine Valdellon, for its support for the competition. Moreover, the team thanks the entire AHS community for its well wishes and prayers. The team continues to train and prepare for upcoming competitions as the school year comes to a close.