Miguel Ventura of 3-A is named Over-all Best Speaker in the Philippines at PSDC 2012

November 07, 2012
AHS Debaters

Last 2-5 November 2012, the Ateneo Debate Society of the Loyola Schools hosted the largest high school debate tournament in the country: the Philippine Schools Debate Championship (PSDC). Now on its eleventh year, the tournament’s number of participants reached an all time high, bringing in three hundred and twenty debaters from all over the country.

The tournament was held in the British Parliamentary Format. It also consisted of seven preliminary rounds, after which thirty two (32) out of one hundred and sixty (160) teams would be ranked and seeded, and proceed to compete in four elimination rounds, also known as break rounds.

The Ateneo High School Debaters performed remarkably well—earning several individual and team awards, and setting several tournament records along the way.

The first record that the team set was getting the highest number of teams breaking into the elimination rounds in eleven years of PSDC. Seven out of ten teams from the Ateneo High School advanced, a remarkably high percentage proving the depth of the Ateneo bench. After the preliminary rounds, AHS A, comprised of Miguel Ventura (3A) and Jim Bulan (3N) were seeded first. AHS C, comprised of Kiko Santos (4A) and Vitto Pavia (4K), was seeded fifth. AHS E, comprised of Matt San Pedro (4M) and Martin Abis (3B), was seeded 8th. AHS F, comprised of Miguel Guerrero (2A) and Poch Kalagayan (2A), was seeded 10th. AHS D, comprised of Rafa Lapira (2A) and France Santos, was seeded 12th.  AHS G, comprised of Tres Yap (2B) and Adrian Padilla (2J), was seeded 16th. Finally, AHS B, comprised of Ryan Abis (4B) and Isaac Lee (3D), was seeded 26th. Abis and Lee were originally the 6th seeded team, but three team points were deducted as a penalty of one of the members missing one preliminary round, for having to take a scheduled SAT examination. The deduction made the team fall to 26th seed.

Due to tournament rules, however, only five teams from a high school can compete in the break rounds. AHS C reached the finals of the tournament, and came in 2nd place in the final round. AHS A reached the semifinals; AHS D and E reached the quarterfinals, and AHS F reached the octofinals. AHS B and AHS G were “capped off” due to tournament rules, but were nonetheless recognized as official breaking teams.

The second record was set by Miguel Ventura and Jim Bulan—who earned a total of 20 out of a possible 21 points in the 7 preliminary rounds, dropping only one point during the long process. This ties the previous tournament record last set in 2007, where eventual champions Xavier also finished with 20 out of a possible 21 points.

The third record was set by having four speakers named among the top ten speakers of the Philippines. Miguel Ventura was named as the Best Speaker in the Philippines, Jim Bulan as the 3rd Best Speaker in the Philippines, Vitto Pavia as the 6th Best Speaker in the Philippines, and Martin Abis as the 10th best speaker in the Philippines. This ties the previous record set, also by the Ateneo High School, when in 2010, Bas Claudio (4M 2011), Jovin Pizarro (4A 2011), Vincent Soriano (4A 2012), and Javier Pablo (4A 2013), were named among the ten best speakers of PSDC.

Xavier School emerged as the eventual champions of PSDC 2012.

Special recognition also goes to Alfonso Opulencia (4B), Josiah Encinas (2F), Derrick Ampil (2J), Tim Yusingco (2A), Migui de la Cruz (2G), and JJ Sagcal (2A), who also competed and did very well at PSDC 2012.