Debate teams from Sumner Academy and Lincoln College Preparatory Academy led Debate-Kansas City teams to their best performance yet in the Urban Debate National Championship in Los Angeles.
The Sumner team of Mylan Gray and Alex Trobough from the Kansas City, Kan., school district finished second, going undefeated through nine matches before losing in the final.
Lincoln Prep’s Monica Medeiros won the tournament’s top speaker award as she and teammate Ellen Baker reached the semifinals before losing to the eventual championship team from Baltimore.
Baker won third place in the individual speaker award. Gray and Trobough won the fifth- and sixth-place speaker awards.
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The four debaters “made history,” said Gabe Cook, the executive director for Debate-Kansas City.
By winning four of the top six speaker awards and putting two teams into the semifinals, the students compiled Debate-KC’s best performance in its 17-year history and one of the best performances by any debate team in the national championship’s history, Cook said.
In all, 38 policy debate teams representing 19 leagues put 76 students in the competition, which was held at the University of Southern California last weekend.