LRCH Central Debate & Forensics Team

Originally Published March 2023

Congratulations to the Little Rock Central debaters who perilously traveled all the way to the Harvard National Speech and Debate Tournament in Cambridge, MA last month and left with lots TSA-triggering hardware!

Senior Georgia Liu earned her SEVENTH BID to the Tournament of Champions in Congressional Debate! This achievement puts Georgia in the Top 10 Congressional Debate Bid Earners in the country. Georgia finished in Semifinals of Harvard Nationals—the most challenging bid tournament of the year for Congressional Debate. 

Junior Rose Walters earned her SECOND BID to the Tournament of Champions in Congressional Debate, fully punching her ticket to the TOC in April! Rose finished in the Quarterfinals! 

After seven grueling preliminary rounds of debate (14 hours), Juniors Brady Chandler and Bess Kerby and Junior Sarea Pitts and Sophomore Ayoka Boaitey emerged UNDEFEATED and the TOP TWO SEEDS in the JV Policy Division. Chandler/Kerby advanced through all elimination debates to the FINAL ROUND, placing SECOND in the Division in a close 2-1 decision (fun fact: LRCH Alum, Darrin (DJ) Williams was a panelist in this round!). Boaitey/Pitts placed THIRD in the division, and Sarea Pitts earned SECOND SPEAKER in the division! Sophomore Blanche Finzer and Junior Joey Leenhouts advanced to elimination rounds of JV Policy Debate, placing FOURTH in the division! 

Juniors Jack Baker and Jackson Mills advanced to Varsity Policy Debate elimination rounds, earning a spot in the Double-Octafinals. They continue to distinguish themselves as one of the best (and youngest) bid-level policy teams in the country! They are the only team from Arkansas qualified to the Tournament of Champions in Policy Debate. 

Junior Layla Perry and Freshman Aarush Gaddi finished preliminary rounds in Novice Policy Debate with a 5-1 record, finishing in the ELITE EIGHT of the division! Perry and Gaddi have placed at every national tournament they have attended this year. They are well-poised to win the Novice National Championship at the end of this month. 

Additional results include:

Fatimah Yousaf/Aishani Artha - Novice Policy - Novice Policy Debate - Octafinalists 

Allie Mareen/Jude Schaffner - Novice Policy Debate - Double-Octafinalists 

Bess Kerby - JV Policy Debate - 5th Speaker