The season is off to a strong start for the Dodge City High School debate team.

This past Saturday, the debate team won the top prize at the Dragon Debate Invitational in Halstead.

Completing the day with an almost perfect score was senior Amber Nilhas who scored a 6 in five rounds while her partner Daniel Soriano led the Demon Debate team giving the pair a perfect 5-0 on the day taking first place in the open division.

"I was really nervous about this tournament," said Nilhas in a press release. "So, of course, I was really surprised that we went undefeated and won first place.

"This is definitely the highlight of my career so far."

In the novice division, Deymi Martinez and Alexa Martinez made up one of only two teams at the meet that went 5-0 on the day.

Unfortunately a tie-breaker was applied and the team ended up taking 2nd place.

The 6th place team posting a 3-2 record at the meet was teammates Kale Lowery and Alden Knedler were 3-2 at the meet.

In the junior varsity division, Amy Soberanes and teammare Roque Orozco posted a 3-2 mark for 5th place while the team of Allie Gier and Guadalupe Hipolito posted a 3-2 mark for 6th place.

In total the Demon Debaters held an overall mark of 21-9 between the six duos.

According to debate coach Steve Ray, the best four ledgers, which were used to determine the sweepstakes winner, were a collective 16-4 which was one win better than the runner-up McPherson team in the tournament.

"This was truly an outstanding tournament," said Ray. "There were over 130 debaters from 21 high schools participating, and I am sure many of them will qualify for the state tournaments in their respective classes later this year.

"I am very proud of our debaters for performing so well against such stiff competition."

Next up for the debate team will be the Arrowhead Invitational Debate Tournament in Hays.

To contact the writer email vmarshall@dodgeglobe.com