On Saturday, Nov. 16, the 2013 Munster Open Debate Tournament in Munster, Ind., drew 327 debaters from 18 schools in three states competing in Policy, Public Forum, Lincoln-Douglas and Congressional debate formats.
Woodlands Academy of the Sacred Heart's newly revived Debate Team sent three debaters to compete in the Lincoln-Douglas Novice Division. Out of a field of 37 entrants hailing from a dozen schools, Woodlands Academy sophomores Arminda Downey-Mavromatis of Gurnee, Elena Gutierrez of Waukegan and Ellie Randolph of Lake Forest finished in 1st, 2nd and 3rd place (respectively) with a perfect combined 12-0 record.
Downey-Mavromatis was named the Novice Division Tournament Champion.
Kyle Schmitt, debate coach, remarked on the day's events: "Three things happened that I've never seen before in my 10 years in debate. I've never seen a team sweep 1st, 2nd and 3rd at a tournament this big. I've never seen a debater (Gutierrez) post a perfect (4-0) record in her first tournament ever against opponents with multiple tournaments of experience. And, most impressively, I've never seen a team receive their awards hand-in-hand and hug afterwards. In the context of an activity like debate, which can sometimes be conducive to egoism, that was a beautiful and heartwarming moment."
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Founded in 1858, Woodlands Academy is an independent Catholic college preparatory day and boarding high school for young women, and part of a worldwide network of Sacred Heart Schools that spans 19 cities in the United States and 44 countries around the world. A nonprofit, Woodlands Academy's identity is rooted in Saint Madeleine Sophie Barat's desire to inspire young hearts and minds to excel, to lead lives of integrity and to serve. For more information about Woodlands Academy, please visit www.woodlandsacademy.org