The DC International School was our second middle school program, and were the first middle school team to field a varsity team this year. Last year, they stepped up and hosted our January tournament after a snow storm cancelled our previous tournament. This year, they won first place in Varsity at their own competition.
Always a pleasant tournament venue, DC International prepared hard to seize the home field advantage. Their hard work paid off, as the team of Lowenstein and Frone took first place in the Varsity Division, the first middle school team to win a Varsity tournament in 2016. Their dominant performance also netted them the 3rd and 4th overall speaker awards. The DCI team of Baskurt and Almendarez also grabbed 5th place in Varsity, while the DCI team of Houge and Teasdale took 4th in the Novice pool.
DC International wasn't the only school that worked hard. Several students and teams won their first trophies, or made their debuts this past weekend. Sizer of Largo made his debut, and took the 5th place speaker award in the Varsity division. Reyes of EL Haynes debated in his first Varsity tournament, got 4th place in Varsity, and took the top speaker award in Varsity. The team of Hernandez and Miranda from Capital City took second place in the Novice Division. The Stuart Hobson team of Turner and Thompson won their first trophy in the Novice Division, Brookland Middle School made their competitive debut, and defeated Two Rivers and Oyster Adams in their debut.
Congrats also to the teams of Oyster Adams McPhie and Shapiro (1st place in Novice), Oyster Adams Retherford and Manegio (2nd place in Novice), Hinant and Scott-Reid of Largo (2nd Place Varsity), and DC Prep's Tan and Headly (3rd Place Varsity).
The success of new Varsity teams moving into Varsity is a great sign of the growing quality of debate available in the WUDL. We have four more teams ready to move up after this tournament, and I'm confident they will continue the trend.