HARRISON, N.Y. -- The Harrison High School debate team has captured the top three spots in two district championships – qualifying the team for the national championships.
Senior Elyssa Alfieri was the NCFL district champion and the tournament’s top speaker, earning a perfect 6-0 ballot count in her first three rounds. Alfieri was a quarterfinalist at NCFL Nationals last year. Senior Kathryn Kenny was the tournament’s runner-up and the second speaker, and senior Sarah Ryan placed third and was the tournament’s third speaker. This is the first time in school history that Harrison has claimed the top three spots at NCFL districts, and all three students will be attending the NCFL National Tournament in Sacramento, California in May.
At the NSDA District Tournament, Harrison also captured the top three spots. Kenny, junior Sammi O’Reilly and junior Raffi Piliero closed out the tournament in a three-way co-championship. None of the debaters lost a round in the tournament, held at Iona Prep in New Rochelle. As only two can advance to the nationals, Kenny and O’Reilly will represent Harrison at the District at NSDA Nationals in Salt Lake City in June. Piliero will be the first alternate.
This is the fifth consecutive year that Harrison has qualified students to the NSDA Nationals.
For her leadership on issues related to women in the debate community, Kenny was also recognized as the District Student of the Year, the first time a Harrison debater has received that honor.