This weekend, Los Altos’s Javin Pombra & Daniel Vesurai triumphed at Irvington High School’s debut tournament, the Vikings Invitational. Although there was no final round, the Los Altos team brought home the championship, going undefeated in all five rounds and earning the highest speaker points at the tournament. 

Los Altos's Javin Pombra & Danny Vesurai pose with awards. 

Los Altos's Javin Pombra & Danny Vesurai pose with awards. 

Irvington originally capped entries at 5 teams per school per division, allowing only entries from high school teams. This resulted in a smaller pool than usual, with 41 varsity entries and 23 novice entries. However, the invitational still attracted many strong teams, many of whom were looking to earn points before the first TOC auto-qualification cutoff. Points were given to all teams that emerged with winning records, since there were no elimination rounds.

Debaters were generally satisfied with how the tournament was run. “The tournament was efficient, and I had a great time,” said Campolindo’s David Gomez-Siu. “Irvington did a great job making this a paperless tab tournament.” Other competitors also mentioned that they enjoyed the resolutions.

After five rounds, two other teams, Irvington’s Reetam Ganguli & Isha Sanghvi and Campolindo’s David Gomez-Siu & Sophie Stankus, also maintained undefeated records. Five teams achieved 4-1 records, including Valley Christian’s Sai Alisetty & Katherine Ho, Campolindo’s Austen Li & Ming Qian, Prospect’s Mehak Sharma & Paige Prudhon, Nueva’s Neeraj Sharma & Leo Rossi, and Campolindo’s Arjun Chimni & Colin Jones.

In the novice division, Nueva’s Ben Cheng & Robby Voorhis successfully affirmed the same resolution, defeating Campolindo’s Angad Chimni & Samuel Ganten in the last round to emerge as the only 5-0 team in the division.

In addition to their championship, Los Altos also swept speaker awards. Vesurai and Pombra took first and second place respectively, while Campolindo’s Kyle Wu took third. In the novice division, Prospect’s Emily Vainberg and Julie Son took first and third place, while Nueva’s Ben Cheng took second.

The tournament ended just an hour behind schedule, despite having five rounds in one day. Based on this year’s success, debaters hope to see the Vikings Invitational become a regular on the NorCal circuit.

Tournament results can be found here

Official tournament photos by Rishabh Meswani can be found here

Our Northern California correspondents are Shannon Bonet, who debates for Campolindo High School, and Emily Her, who debates for Dougherty Valley High School.