First year debaters win championship at Marist

Congratulations to ninth grade debaters Collin Chan, Ophelia Cherry-Pulay, Caroline Keiper, Rhea Nachnani, Zinnia Nichols Loller, Ellie Rothman, Lexi Straus, and Siddhi Voona for an outstanding start to their high school debate careers.
By Bill Wilson, HS Debate Coach

USN's first year debaters started their season this weekend virtually and rocked the Marist Ivy Street Invitational. All four teams in competition reached the elimination round Saturday night, Sep. 25. Three USN teams claimed a co-championship in the division.

Ophelia Cherry-Pulay '25 and Ellie Rothman '25 finished preliminary competition with a 4-1 record, good for the second seed in the bracket. They won their elimination round in a 3-0 decision over Alpharetta HS (Georgia). Ophelia and Ellie earned the first and second place speaker awards in the division.

Lexi Straus '25 and Rhea Nachnani '25 finished with a 3-2 record, good for the eighth seed where they met the ninth seeded USN team of Collin Chan '25 and Caroline Keiper '25 (3-2). Lexi, Collin, and Rhea claimed the fourth, seventh and ninth place speaker awards in the division, respectively, while closing out one slice of the bracket. Zinnia Nichols Loller '25 and Siddhi Voona '25 finished 3-2, also. As the 13th seed they lost their elimination round to Montgomery Bell Academy.

What a fine start to these debate careers — looking forward to watching what this group can accomplish together.
    • Ninth graders Collin Chan, Ophelia Cherry-Pulay, Caroline Keiper, Ellie Rothman, and Rhea Nachnani pose for a pre-debate picture on the day of the Marist Ivy Street Invitational.

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