It was touted as the most competitive Golden State Debate League Championship tournament ever.
Who could argue against that statement? A month ago at Nationals, represented by league stalwarts Colina, Chaminade, Sycamore, and, of course, Oakwood, the GSDL won 39 of 55 rounds (70.9%), a record that far eclipsed any combined record of any four other teams at Nationals. So, what would happen when those four teams, plus Oaks Christian, were thrown into a tournament together just by themselves? For Oakwood, even as defending league champions, it was a gargantuan challenge.
Last Saturday morning, as nervous debaters started to trickle into the championship at Oaks Christian, there was a tension in the room based on what was at stake. Sycamore students sat in uniform pods at their tables, busily going over arguments in last-minute preparations. Chaminade debaters were comparing notes and refutations. Coaches greeted each other and braced themselves for a day of trials.
But where were the Oakwood kids? What were they doing?